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So, does anyone have any special tricks or tips for keeping a black car at its peak? How to avoid swirl marks and minimize scratches and such?
 

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hehe

Easy,

Touchless car washes every 2 weeks in the winter, handwash every 2 weeks in the summer.

Carwash:
1. Touchless will of course keep the swirl marks off of your car.
2. When you're out, use a real sheepskin chamois to take the excess water off and keep it dry and beautiful. Otherwise you're gonna get water stains. No thanks!
3. Don't use the chamois on the BOTTOM of the wheel wells, skirts, rims, or lower parts in general. It'll pick up dirt and scratch your paint. Use a crap towel to wipe these lower parts off.

Handwashing tips:
1. For handwashing, use a wash mitt. Simmonz makes them, they work really well.

2. Don't use car wash detergents/soaps. They suck. Use Palmolive with the scent of your choice. Three quarter sizes' worth are enough for an entire bucket of water.

3. Spray wash the car with a hose. Pressured is better. Just start at the rims and clean them out so the dirt flies eveywhere first. Then go from the top and work your way down with the hose close to the car for more pressure (if you don't have a pressured hose).

4. Use a regular cloth to clean the bottom of the car, especially around wheel wells, skirts, rims, etc. This is where the scratchy dirt is, and you don't want that wiping off on the rest of your car on the mitt. You'll wind up scratching your paint. The mitt should stay AWAY from sand/dirt.

5. You did this cleaning job yourself, so you can use the sheepskin chamois to get the car dry. Just start top to bottom just in case.

Other than that, use a good wax every 6 months. I recommend Maguire's. Good stuff! Apply this stuff in small doses with an up and down motion, no swirls :)

Now the bad news. You will get swirls no matter what. The best you can do is minimize them. If you get a sealer wax (wax that lasts 3-5 years), you'll still get swirls! Don't buy it!!!!

If you follow these instructions, your car will be looking good for a good 5 to 8 years. How's that for detail? :roll:
 

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Very detailed car washing how-to :)

I agree with most of what you recommend except I heard it was bad to use dishwashing soap because it is too strong and can take of the clearcoat or wax on a car. I think this is the reason for not using dish soap, but I am not positive. Has anyone else heard that dish soap should not be used?
 

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Good tips mostly, but Imp180psu is right. Dish detergents WILL strip the wax that you spend so much time putting on. Use a quality car wash soap such as Meguiars Gold Class.
 

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Palmolive

I've been using Palmolive on black cars for over 5 years, no problems. Dealerships wash their cars with Palmolive :) I've asked. My friend's been using it on his black Altima too for 2 years, no problems.

I've got to dispell the myth that it's corrosive, because actually it's a lot less harsh than car wash solutions. It won't fade or cause cracking, or ruin the clear coat.

I'm basing this on personal experience.
 

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The only time to use detergents is the first time you clean your car. Clean the shit out of your car and then use a clay bar to pick up any and all contaminants in the paint.

After this is done you want to apply whatever wax you want, I am a huge advocate of Zaino myself, do it in layers after a good clay bar and your car will look sexay!
 

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jsut wondering...touchless car wash are thoe gas station ones right?
 

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nmack said:
jsut wondering...touchless car wash are thoe gas station ones right?
yeah....touchless car washes are those high pressure washes in gas stations where pretty much only water touches your car so "touchless"
 

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Whoa! The only time you should use dishwashing soap is when you plan to put wax on after your done! Dishwashing soap "puts grease on the run", and wax is basically grease. Run your hand along the paint after using dish soap, doesn't "glide" too easily does it? Cuase there is no wax!
Any way, I wash by hand 99% of the time, using one of these brushes and an automotive car wash soap, rinse with the nozzel on SHOWER, and dry with either a soft towel or Absorber, depending on mood. No swirls, No drips, No errors. Oh, and that's on two black cars.
 

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my main concern is that with using any kind of brush/towel/sponge that you're going to be picking up dirt and dragging it across your car as you wahs it, thgus leaving a shitload of surface scratches.. but i guess that's where waxing comes in huh?
 

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So, if you don't use a brush, sponge, or mit, how do you expect to get the dirt off? High pressure wash WILL NOT remove it all. :D
 

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Some people are pretty obsessive about this. They will buy a new cleaning rag every week. I just wash my sponges every time. Also, it helps to wash your car starting from the roof and working your way down, since the roof is the least dirty part of the car (usually). Rims on these darn mazdas should be last, b/c they are so freaking dirty.
 
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