Assignment 4: How to Properly Wash and Detail Your Vehicle

Keeping cars clean is a very hard thing for many peeps, just like my friends who begs me to help wash their cars every month.  With that said, I got the influence from my friend Gary who recommended me to post up a blog on how to properly wash and wax a car.  Ever wondered why your car doesn’t look shiny anymore after a few months?  That is because the car has not been properly looked after and protected from treatment.  Gas station car wash makes the paint take a hard beating because the soap is very acidic and the non touch less ones would scratch the hell out of your paint with the dirty bristles.

Washing the Rims

-Rims are usually caked on with brake dust, depending on the type of brake pads the car has.  It is very important to wash the rims once in a while because the dust can eat onto the clearcoat of the rims, causing the rim to look dull and dirty.  A very good and efficient type of rim cleaner I recommend is Sonax Wheel Cleaner.  It is a type of wheel cleaner that is PH balanced, meaning it is safe for all types of rims.

When you spray the cleaner on to the rim, it first appears to be green.  As the colour changes red, it means the cleaner has done its job and has loosened up the brake dust.  At this moment, it is time to spray a strong stream of water.




photocopy25Washing the rims with a brush like this can help make the job a lot less tiring.

-Final Result of the Rim


Washing the Body

-Washing a car may not be as easy as it seems.  Lets take this Acura TSX for example. The car has been washed a few months ago and bug, tar and dirt has gotten all over the car.

-To clean up the bug and tar dirt, I recommend using an all purpose cleaner like P21s Total Wash.  This detergent helps loosen up the dirt.  We don’t want to push that hard onto the paint because that would cause swirl marks and marring which can make the paint look dull and flat after a few washes.

60179_479753890852_7632039_nTo show what I mean by swirl marks and marring, here is a picture.  Under the light, you can see a lot of light scratches which is caused by improper wiping and hard pressing against the paint.

Detailers Domain Widebody Audi S4 Black 9-Once the P21s Total Auto Wash has been soaked on the bumper, it is time to use your car wash soap in a bucket to clean the entire car. With regards to the soap, I recommend a mixing of 10mL of soap and 7 Litres of water.  I prefer to have more water because it allows the dirt and grime to sink underneath the bucket.  Spray with a strong stream of water against the whole car.


It is time to start wiping down the panels with the bucket of soap and a sheepskin mitt.  Do not go in circular motions but rather left to right because it is easier to scratch the car like that.  After one panel on the car has been cleaned, it is recommended to put that mitt into another bucket with water for rising. An alternate mitt is now used with the soap.  This is known as the two bucket method.

Remember, it is better to wash from the roof downwards to the side skirts because the car is most dirty down below, meaning less dirt or grime going against the paint.  After going through the whole car and every panel has been wiped, rinse the entire car with water.



-After the rinse, it is time to wipe down the car with a waffle cloth that does best absorbing water. Once the towel is not absorbing water, squeeze the water out until the whole car is dried.  Using a microfiber cloth to tackle remaining water can also be a choice.


-Polishing is a hardcore step in car detailing which not everybody would like to tackle.  This step is only needed when there is a lot of swirl marks on the car. Recently Menzerna came out with a new product that is user friendly for car enthusiasts, that would like to get rid of swirl marks themselves.  All you need is a Porter Cable and a Yellow Cutting Pad by Lake Country.  Use the Porter Cable at 5000rpms and the yellow cutting pad paired with Fast Gloss 400.  After a minute or two buffing in a 4″x4″ area this should be the final result.

-50/50 Action (Left side without Polishing versus Right side with Fast Gloss 400)



-Finish off with a coat of preferred wax.  I recommend Collinite 845 which is very easy to apply and very last longing.  Use a wax pad, spread a drop of Collinite on it and wipe the entire car gently.  Apply the wax very thin because this wax goes a very long way.  If you wipe too much, it would be very hard to wipe off after.
-After you wipe the entire car with the wax pad, use a microfiber cloth and buff away the wax in either a circular or left to right motion.

FINAL RESULT~ DRUM ROLLING DSC_8314Your car should look brand spanking new! Remember, wash your car more frequently to prevent the polishing step! Take cleaning your car as a hobby and not a chore! What do you think about my writeup on car detailing? Give me your comments down the box below! Thanks!


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