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Car washing

Discussion in 'Exterior Styling, Bodywork & Detailing' started by Chriswhit, 6 Jan 2017.

  1. Chriswhit

    Chriswhit Member VIP Member T6 Pro

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    How many guys get there T6 washed in a car wash and does anyone know what harm the chemicals (TFR) does to your pride and joy . I will never take my van to a car wash but choose to wash my self with the products that keep the shine in your pride and joy .
    How many guys have been bitten by the detailing bug , my wife is very concerned that now I have more detailing products in my garage than she has beauty products on her dressing table .
     
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  2. Loz

    Loz California 204 DSG 4Motion MY17 Moderator VCDS User VIP Member T6 Guru

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    Never to the first question. I would be more worried about all the grit in their sponges swirling your paint before any citrus TFR damage. Even the so called non scratch auto washes have loads of grit embedded in those mops.
     
  3. Chriswhit

    Chriswhit Member VIP Member T6 Pro

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    Your right @Loz , it's always a two bucket wash with a lambs wool wash mitt . It makes me cringe driving past a car wash and seeing these guys using old sponges and brushes . I don't think people know what damage they are doing to their paintwork.
     
  4. StudleyGlass

    StudleyGlass 150 DSG Combi Highline VIP Member T6 Legend

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    Car washers never ! There are people that just dont bother with their vehicles, it just transport to them, no more.
    Then there are us guys who are enthusiasts the look after our Pride and joy, we detail and modify it to our own tastes and get great pleasure for doing that. I no i do :)
     
    Chriswhit likes this.
  5. Polzeylad

    Polzeylad California 204 4motion VIP Member T6 Legend

    Car washes equal paint death.
    If you really can't wash your van at home, use a reputable hand car washing service or a pressure washer - do NOT wash the paint with a brush.
    Two buckets (one for soapy water, one for clean water), a wash mitt and a grit guard in the bottom of the rinse bucket is what you need.
    Do small areas at a time and rinse the mitt any time it looks at all dirty - that dirt will scratch your paint. The top of the van is usually quite clean and needs few rinses but as you work your way down, rinse the mitt more often.
    And be sure to hose off the soap before the water dries off.
    Also try and dry it with an MF towel if possible to avoid water marks.

    With regards to products, it's easy to overdo it and over the years I've realised what is needed and what isn't - my aim isn't to have a permanently show shined van/car because that's simply not practical; I keep mine polished and cleaned to protect it and make it easier to clean next time; it doesn't need to take an entire day - just some practical steps to keep your van looking good while at the same time retaining your sanity (and your other halfs).

    Essentials:
    A good pressure washer; I'd say only snow foam if the van is REALLY bad - I find a good blast off actually does a pretty similar job to the snow foam when it's not too bad.
    Two buckets one with a grit guard.
    A good wash mitt.
    Car shampoo - don't go super expensive; they're all pretty similar.
    At least half a dozen MF cloths - grade them keeping the "worst" for wheel drying/interior wiping and the best for polish removal/window cleaning.
    A multi purpose cleaner - absolutely brilliant all round cleaner - I use Bilt Hambers one at about 1:4 with water - it does almost everything from the wheels (spray, agitate, wait, rinse off) to the slightly annoying plastic floor (spray, agitate with a softish brush, wipe off), the door plastics and the tyres. It's also VERY cheap.
    Protector spray for the carpets - most car brands do one - I use the BMW Mini one (half the price of the BMW one!).
    A good glass polish - loads do them, some are a total pain to get off. You can do the dash plastics, satnav, all sorts with it.
    A good, easy to use polish - Dodo Supernatural Hybrid for me - polishes AND seals, easy to remove, leaves a great finish. Not the cheapest but the best value IMO.

    Things I've found I don't use a lot are:
    Detailing clay - yes it's a good thing to do but it doesn't need doing often and it's actually quite easy to do more damage with it than good.
    Harsh wheel cleaners - just too strong. I tend to just use multi purpose cleaner. I occasionally do the Subaru Wheels with some but they are a right pain to clean. Not used any on the van with it's easy clean Devonports.
    Wheel polish - I was an avid fan for a while but realised they don't last long at all. I don't bother any more.
    Detailing sprays - again I used to use it but don't bother any more. You can't clean with them (wash it) and if your van is polished well, they don't add any protection. They can be useful for getting rid of spot marks of bird muck but you're not being kind to your paint rubbing bird muck off - use warm/hot water in a sprayer, gently lift the bird cack off. If it's the welded on brown stuff, you'll need your trusty pressure washer.
    Tyre dressing - yes I do use it occasionally but it lasts about three days then looks poor again. Use the MPC regularly and the tyres should be okay.

    If a regular clean and dry off is taking you more than an hour, you're doing it wrong. Allow a couple of hours for a polish but taking an entire day is approaching "oh dear" territory.

    It's REALLY annoying when you get your van looking spot on only to have a short journey muck it up but it happens - round here it happens a LOT!!

    Bored yet?
     
    Last edited: 7 Jan 2017
    chrisw, Walski, Roadrunner and 3 others like this.
  6. HHO

    HHO Senior Member VIP Member T6 Guru

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    Van OCD big time in my house. Only person to touch my van to clean it is me. Drives the wife nuts ;)

    IMG_1144.JPG IMG_1145.JPG
     
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  7. StudleyGlass

    StudleyGlass 150 DSG Combi Highline VIP Member T6 Legend

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    nice carpet lines mate! proper
     
  8. HHO

    HHO Senior Member VIP Member T6 Guru

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    Just a bit of fun to wind the wife up. She genuinely didn't know where to put her feet when she got in after that one ! :rofl:
     
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  9. Vinci

    Vinci Member VIP Member

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    Anyone use Muckoff.....I use it on my bike to good effect?
     
  10. Polzeylad

    Polzeylad California 204 4motion VIP Member T6 Legend

    Yep but you soon realise they are mostly very similar so I now use my Bilt Hamber Surfex HD All Purpose Cleaner on the cars and bike to great effect; much cheaper. But I'm still using my MucOff spray bottle to apply it and my brush is a MucOff one.
     
  11. HHO

    HHO Senior Member VIP Member T6 Guru

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    Yes. You can buy it in 25 litre units too online. I'm yet to find my ideal shampoo/snowfoam/TFR. Will need to re-stock soon. Head scratching at the moment ......
     
  12. T6 Dave's Dad

    T6 Dave's Dad Senior Member T6 Guru

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    An old friend of mine who worked at a car dealership cleaning and prepping cars always insisted that when washing off a car it was better to wash from the bottom upwards in order to allow the dirt to float over a washed area rather than gather and thicken the layer of dirt if the car was washed top down. Certainly that is the better way to use a pressure washer. I shall now withdraw and let the debate begin :whistle:
     
  13. Fish

    Fish Senior Member VIP Member T6 Guru

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    Carlack products for maintaince
     
    Last edited: 7 Jan 2017
  14. Polzeylad

    Polzeylad California 204 4motion VIP Member T6 Legend

    I hate to be picky but a lot of dealership cleans and preps are very poor; one resulted in my old Cali needing a full machine polish.
     
  15. StudleyGlass

    StudleyGlass 150 DSG Combi Highline VIP Member T6 Legend

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    I agree with @Polzeylad, Did not let them touch mine. I have witness some dodgy cleaning method being used at a couple of dealerships in my time. Im sure there are some good ones about but its a bit pot luck unless you know them.
     
  16. HHO

    HHO Senior Member VIP Member T6 Guru

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    Sat in a McDonalds once watching the valeters at work in the Land Rover dealer next door. Wash brooms all over a £70k Range Rover. Picked up off floor and scrubbed all over it. :(
     
  17. Roadrunner

    Roadrunner Senior Member VIP Member T6 Guru

    The good thing is it was not your VW
     
  18. Walski

    Walski Senior Member VIP Member T6 Guru

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    Another one for carlack here. Just spent a couple of hours cleaner, decontaminating and sealing the wheels on the missus mini.

    @Polzeylad, re tyre dressing, I use swissvax pneu. It's expensive but does keep your tyres looking great.
     
  19. T6 Dave's Dad

    T6 Dave's Dad Senior Member T6 Guru

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    He was ex National Service and serving TA and knew the meaning of bullish*t and how to valet a car properly. It was at a high end dealer in Woking in the 60s. I saw his work and was most impressed with it.
     
  20. Polzeylad

    Polzeylad California 204 4motion VIP Member T6 Legend

    I have GTechniq T1 which is sodding expensive but still doesn't last long.
     

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