I had the pleasure of being able to attend a Detailing Day at Meguiar's in Daventry. Meguiar's have over 100 years experience in creating quality waxes and polishes. They are market leaders in car care products and have a product for everything.
One lucky Saab owner had their car worked on. The results can be seen at the end of this post. There was plenty of car cleaning theory and a practical demonstration on restoring a cars paint finish.
This is what we learned.
Secrets of the Pros
Professionals understand the critical value of each of the following appearance care steps:
Removing loose contaminants on the top of your car's paint surfaces.
Removing bonded and embedded contaminants, blemishes and oxidation that washing cannot remove.
3. POLISHING (Not waxing)
This is the key step for restoring rich, vibrant paint colour with sparkling, swirl-free high gloss. BEWARE: Not all products labelled "polish" are truly pure polishes. Some are abrasive and some are waxes. Meguiar's polishes are pure polishes.
Applying a barrier coat of tough waxes, silicones, resins and/or polymers on top of the paint finish to repel contamination and oxidation.
Removing the daily accumulation of surface contaminants (i.e. fallout, diesel exhaust, overspray, hard water spots, tree sap, bird droppings) the instant they are discovered, before they have time to bond or etch into the paint finish. Meguiar's Quik Detailer A3316 quickly removes fresh contaminants on the spot without scratching your paint finish. Carry it in your car for ready use. (Maintaining has become the most important step for keeping a sharp car looking sharp all the time.)
Paint Surface Evaluation Test
Wash and dry both your car and your hands. Now run your finger- tips across the paint surfaces, which should feel as smooth as glass. If not, you are feeling bonded contaminants That can be safely and quickly removed using our Quick Clay Detailing System G1116 and Oxidation be removed with a mild, clear coat safe, abrasive cleaner like Meguiar's Clear Coat Body Scrub A1016 before applying polish or wax.
Removing scratches, swirl marks and blemishes
Meguair's have 3 new products for restoring your paint finish.
Meguiar’s introduces a new and improved formula for isolated scratch and scuff removal. This new formula, specially designed for hand application to quickly remove isolated scratches, fingernail marks, paint transfer and car park scuffs. Unique micro-abrasives correct these defects fast and are clear coat safe.
Spider webs, holograms, light towel mark swirls… Car guys tell us that eliminating them is their number one problem. In response we have developed SwirlX to easily remove minor swirls and light scratches from all paint finishes. SwirlX is clear coat safe and consumer friendly. SwirlX can be applied by hand or with our DA polisher and leaves a brilliant, swirl-free surface that maximises gloss and reflectivity.
Meguiar’s has revolutionised rubbing and polishing compounds with Ultimate Compound. Our new abrasive technology quickly removes stubborn oxidisation, stains, bird droppings blemishes and other sub-surface defects while polishing the surface to a mirror finish. Whether working by hand or with our DA polisher, Ultimate Compound is the perfect choice to prepare your paint’s surface for your favourite Meguiar’s wax.
To determine if your paint has enough wax protection, wad a clean, dry towel and rub it against the TOP surfaces of your car after it has been washed and dried. If you hear squeaking, it needs to be waxed.
Important Car Washing Tips
Do not use dish-washing detergents or cheap car wash shampoos because they can strip off paint protection and accelerate oxidation. Only wash your car when it's cool and in the shade to avoid water spotting. Start at the top and work down. Soft water is best.
Tree Sap Mist
During Spring and Summer, trees release tree sap mist. Unlike droplets of sap, tree sap mist can travel for long distances before landing on parked cars or cars passing by. It's impossible to avoid, yet easy to remove when it first lands, by maintaining with Quik Detailer. Hardened deposits of tree sap are best removed with the Quick Clay Detailing System.
Tyre Care Tips
Avoid ordinary silicone emulsion protectants that cover surface contamination with a shiny synthetic coating. These cause tyre discolouration and decay. Clean your tyres while you dress them with a complex formula like Meguiar's Endurance Protectant that cleans, beautifies and protects in one easy step, leaving tyres looking like new, and free of that "plastic" look.
Wheel Care Tips
Most wheels now come with clear coat finishes that require special care. Do not use abrasives or scouring pads on these wheels. One of the safest, most effective wheel cleaners is Meguiar's Hot Rims. It contains no acid, toxins or abrasives yet effectively removes stubborn road grime and brake dust and leaves the surface bright and shiny. It is the product recommended by BBS, the world- renowned wheel maker.
Common silicone emulsion protectants cover over surface contamination, create glare on the dashboard, and leave seats and steering wheels dangerously slippery. Use non-silicone vinyl cleaners and one step cleaner conditioners such as Meguiar's Natural Shine G4116. Only use specialised leather care products (like Gold Class Leather Cleaner & Conditioner G7214) on leather surfaces. Use safe, specialised cleaners such as Meguiar's Carpet & Interior Cleaner G9416 on carpets and fabric upholstery.
Clear Plastic & Window tinting
Maintaining clear plastics and window tinting is a delicate matter. These materials can easily scratch and lose their original clarity. We highly recommend the use of PlastRX G12310 to safely remove surface contaminants and gently restore optical clarity. Use it on window tinting, convertible rear windows, instrument panel lenses, helmet face shields, sun glasses and hundreds of other clear plastic surfaces.
Special Detailing Tips
Use 100% cotton terry cloth towelling on your paint finish. The nap protects the finish from particles caught between the surface and the towel. Synthetic blends may scratch your surface. If your polishing cloth pulls colour your finish is probably not a clear coat. Avoid turning your application cloth over to its other side to apply a different product, because some ingredients may penetrate through and change the chemical balance of the product. Avoid putting pressure on tops of ridges where your car's paint is the thinnest. Use Meguiar's Quik Detailer and a soft 100 % cotton terry towel cloth to remove wax residue from emblems, lettering, etc.
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