Washing your car the right way – Vital Auto Spa

Washing your car the right way

Washing my coated car the right way
April 12, 2021

Washing your car the right way

Washing your car the right way

The number 1 question we get after one of our Vital details is "How do I keep my car this way?" So we wanted to put together a quick guide to aftercare for your vehicle. The first thing to remember here. Avoid HARSH and stay CLEAN. Put back the "soft cotton" rags you are using to scrub your pits, and the Dawn stays in the kitchen! Here is a list of things you need to get started.

Tools for Washing

2x-35-Gallon-Buckets-2x-Grit-Guards-Kit_cover_1151_full_867

Wash Buckets

3 Buckets, 2 Grit Guards
Detail-Guardz-Dirt-Lock_1770_1_lw_5543

Dirt Locks

Add to your buckets or upgrade the grits!
The-Rag-Company-Cyclone-Premium-Microfiber-Wash-Pad-Grey-6-x-8_1928_1_lw_2683

Wash Mitt

Recommend 2 at least
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Double Flips

Flip series great for section washing!

Wheel Tools

Wheel-Woolies-3-Piece-Kit_cover_651_full_885

Wheel Woolies

Various sizes to get in and around spokes
Tuf-Shine-Tire-Brush_550_1_lw_2954

Tire Brush

Great for scrubbing tires
DI-Brushes-Boars-Hair-Detailing-Brush-1_565_1_lw_3318

Boar's Hair Detail Brush

Clean your wheels, trim ,and interior
SX-TIRE234b_1000_2400x

Dressing Applicator

Easy to hold, gets into grooves

Towels

16x-Pack-All-Purpose-Microfiber-Towel-Kit_cover_1155_full_165

Microfiber Towels

You can never have enough towels
NanoSkin-AutoScrub-Medium-Wash-Mitt_702_1_lw_4996

AutoScrub

Clay replacement to remove embedded contamination
51SqIPy06bL._AC_SL1000_

Everything Towels

Slightly more plush everyday microfibers
51XIG75n15L._AC_SL1000_

Glass Flips

Clean towels clean windows, these flips are amazing!

Wash Chemicals

Pure-Wash-1000-ML

Pure Wash

Pure wash by Feynlab
Koch-Chemie-Gentle-Snow-Foam-1000-ml_2242_1_lw_2868

GSF Snow Foam

PH neutral soap from Koch Chemie
Koch-Chemie-Green-Star-1000-ml_2243_1_lw_2214

GreenStar

Green Star all purpose cleaner
ADG-FB16-landscape_4b44e4fd-e751-4ec9-ab01-898052b0485f_2400x

FBomb Degreaser

highly concentrated multi purpose cleaner that can be used for a variety of applications

Finishing & Maint

valor-pint-sprayer-wide_2400x

Valor

Spray Sealant & Drying Aid
Glass_Cleaner_Gc_USA_500ml_1024x1024

Glass Cleaner

Clean clear glass
Koch-Chemie-Quick-Shine-1000-ml_2245_1_lw_2897

Quick & Shine

Finishing spray and shine
Z-200303-Shine_Supply_Clutch_160z_1024x1024

Clutch

SIlica Spray Sealant
ADG-WO16B-landscape_2400x

Wipeout

Versatile wash concentrate.

Location:

Shaded area of your driveway, early morning or late evening.

Setup

Fill your wash buckets and place your chosen grit guards in the rinse and soap buckets Add roughly 3-5 oz of soap to your soap bucket. Grab the grit guard and agitate till enough foam bubbles to indicate soap and water have mixed. Add the wheel cleaner to the 3rd bucket Place all Mitts and 2-3 Microfibers in the soap bucket Place all wheel brushes into a seperate wheel bucket

Start

BODY

Rinse from top to bottom.

Take 1 clean mitt to begin your wash. Each wash mitt should be flipped 1 time then returned to the rinse bucket.

You should be able to get about 2 panels per cycle. We normally start at the roof and work down.

Since most of the dirt will be focused on the bottom of the panels, try to only wash half way down before rinsing the mitt out.

Pop your gas cap and take the body boar's hair detail brush and clean one of the most overlooked areas.

Take a microfiber towel and make sure all your wheel arches and side view mirrors and all the other hard to reach areas have been cleaned.

Rinse Entire car and overview your work. This is normally where any "missed" spots are going to show. Take a microfiber to the wheels for any areas that you can see remaining dirt.

WHEELS

Since wheels and tires are one of the hardest parts of the wash. Brake dust, road dust, most modern vehicles wheels get very dirty very fast. To avoid any water spots from forming due to time spent on wheels. Start here.

Spray down all 4 tires and surrounding wheel arches to get as much of the road debris off of them as possible.

Spray down all 4 wheels with the Iron X/Sonax and allow to sit to remove any iron deposits

Agitate any remaining dirt and filth from tires using assorted brushes. Pay attention to corners of spokes and lug nuts

Can also use this on exhaust tips and suspension pieces that might be visible.

CLAY

Now that all of the filth is off the surface of the car, its time to remove the contaminants that are working their way into your clear coat. Pollen, Iron, Sap all are found attached to the clear and the only way to remove them is through a decontamination regimen. This is probably one of most often avoided steps when doing a wash and is one of the most rewarding. If your paintwork doesn't feel absolutely clean, like a mirror, then it will never be able to achieve a mirror-like finish.

Claying is easy. Lubricate and wipe. You can almost hear how bad it is when you are doing it, and once you can no longer hear the "scratching" then move off. The trick here is that it is NOT about pressure, but about FRICTION. You do not have to SCRUB when claying. Depending on just how bad the paint is, Knead the clay or rinse the block often. (Benefit of the block for the amateur: if you drop it, which you probably will, you can rinse it off and go. Clay you are normally not so lucky.) Take the ONR solution and mix according to instruction for "clay lube" (note: this can be used as a supplement in your wash water or as a waterless wash altogether). I also like the clay mitts as you are able to combine 2 "steps" into one while washing. (Wash on "rag" side, then clay on the "clay" side, rinse repeat)

We normally then go over the vehicle with 1 more round of washing to make sure no residue from the clay is left over. For those of you in the "car wash" bay, flip it to "Spotless" to use the deionized water which will aid in drying and avoid type 1 water spots.

Finish

Now that the surface is clean and clear of any debris, it is time to lay a foundation of protectant on the surface. This ensures both an easier cleaning experience next time as well as to keep the shine and luster of your vehicles sensitive surfaces. There are a number of great protectants on the market such as Valor from American Detailer Garage for ease and simplicity or one of our often grabbed protectants Shine Suply's Clutch for its potent punch. Both products are extremely versatile in use beyond paint such as glass and wheels but also rubber and plastics.

Throughout the week we love having a small spray bottle of some 10:1 Wipeout from ADG to catch any bird droppings and bug etchings you match catch along the way!

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