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Automotive Arts: Car Cleaning Tips


Automotive Arts Car Cleaning Tips

How to wash your car

First, select a high quality car wash like Maguire's NXT or Maguire's Deep Crystal Car Wash and add a couple capfuls to a bucket of water to clean the entire car; always check the directions on the bottle to ensure the proper mixing ratio. Dish washing liquid should NEVER be used as an alternate as this strips all the wax off of the car. Always make sure you purchase a quality sponge or wash mitt to wash the car; do not use old rags or t-shirts, because the synthetic fibers can cause small scratches and swirling in your car's finish. Always start from the roof and work downwards, so the dirty water won't run onto the areas you have just cleaned. Always work one panel at a time and rinse off to avoid soap drying onto the car. Repeat this process until the entire car is clean. To avoid water spotting on the finish, especially in our hot Caribbean conditions, use a damp chamois or soft terry cloth towel and remove excess water from the entire car. Start at the roof and work down to the lower panels.

Cleaning Wheels and Tires

Never try to clean your wheels right after driving; the wheels need to be cool to the touch, if necessary cool them down by rinsing with water. Using a high quality cleaner like Maguire's wheel cleaner, apply to the wheel with the aid of a wheel detailing brush; work the cleaner and brush into all the cracks and crevices of the wheel. Wheel cleaners are very aggressive so make sure you only work on one wheel at a time to avoid the cleaner drying on the wheel. Once cleaning is complete, rinse the wheel off and repeat the process on the next wheel.

Waxing the Car

Never wax the car in direct sunlight; the car needs to be both clean and cool prior to applying the wax. Get a proper foam applicator and apply the panel, carefully avoiding the seams and jambs of the vehicle, and only working one panel at a time. When the wax dries to a dull haze, use a 100% cotton terry cloth to remove the film of wax. Then use a high quality polishing cloth (no synthetic fibers) to buff the area to a high shine. After you have completed one panel, turn both towels to an unused section and start on the next panel. Repeat until you've completed the entire vehicle.

Caring for Your Car's Interior

While many people focus on keeping the exterior of their car clean and shiny, the inside of their car is another matter. Keeping the inside of your car clean and well groomed is equally important; here are some tips to keep it looking like new.

The best place to start is with cleaning your upholstery. If your vehicle has cloth or velour upholstery, then ensure you use a good quality foam cleaner. These foam cleaners can also be used on your floor mats and carpet.

If however, the interior of your car is leather, then you will require specialty cleaners developed with this surface in mind. Leather cleaner will not only clean, but moisturize the leather to slow down the aging process. Stay away from solvent based cleaners, because these are too aggressive on leather surfaces, and can lead to rapid aging and even cracking of the leather if used over protracted periods of time. A major contributor to interior maintenance of your car is floor mats. They protect your vehicle's carpet from spills, stains, dirt and wear. And, if your floor mats are showing signs of age, check out the great selection at your local Automotive Art.

Your car's dashboard and plastic/vinyl trim needs to be cleaned and protected against the sun's harmful rays, especially here in the Caribbean. For this you will need a good quality protectant, which will not only provide protection against dirt, grime and the sun's UV rays, but will also offer an attractive shine.

Tidy up your interior cleaning with some glass cleaner on the windows to get rid of any road residue that has built up on your windows. Perhaps add an air freshener to eliminate any odors from your car's interior. Automotive Art has a fantastic range of car care products that will help you keep your car clean, shiny and looking great; just ask any of our qualified sales representatives to recommend what you need.