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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 11 Feb 2007, 08:40 pm
JS
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Default How do I care for my car's exterior?

Just bought a new Civic LX and want to take good care of its paint
job.

Problem is, I live in an apartment and don't have any place to take it
to wash it by hand with a bucket and hose like I used to when I lived
in a house. Nor do I know anyone who has a house where I can take it
to wash and wax it.

So I am left with taking it to a self wash place or a drive through
place. The one drive through place I have used in the past with my old
car seems relatively gentle, it doesnt' have the big brushes, just
long mop-like things that hang down, it is assisted by hand-washing
guys, and then a big dryer then the rest is dried and detailed by
hand.

So those are really my two choices. I could take it and wash it myself
with the soap wand and rinse wand, or take it to the drive through
partial machine/ partial hand place.

What's the opinion?

I was thinking that if I hand wax it, with a good wax (which one??)
then the methods of wash probably won't be that destructive. (??)

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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 12 Feb 2007, 12:52 am
Joe LaVigne
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Default Re: How do I care for my car's exterior?

On Sun, 11 Feb 2007 18:40:40 -0800, JS wrote:

> Just bought a new Civic LX and want to take good care of its paint
> job.
>
> Problem is, I live in an apartment and don't have any place to take it
> to wash it by hand with a bucket and hose like I used to when I lived
> in a house. Nor do I know anyone who has a house where I can take it
> to wash and wax it.
>
> So I am left with taking it to a self wash place or a drive through
> place. The one drive through place I have used in the past with my old
> car seems relatively gentle, it doesnt' have the big brushes, just
> long mop-like things that hang down, it is assisted by hand-washing
> guys, and then a big dryer then the rest is dried and detailed by
> hand.
>
> So those are really my two choices. I could take it and wash it myself
> with the soap wand and rinse wand, or take it to the drive through
> partial machine/ partial hand place.
>
> What's the opinion?
>
> I was thinking that if I hand wax it, with a good wax (which one??)
> then the methods of wash probably won't be that destructive. (??)


In the winter, I take my car to the local Delta Sonic, which is similar to
the drive-through place you are talking about. No spinning brushes. The
point in the winter, around here, is to take off the road salt, ice and
sludge.

In the summer, I hand wash it every week or two, and put on a good coat of
wax at the beginning and end of the season.

As far as which wax is a good one, opinions will vary widely. For normal
personal cars, your standard Turtle Wax, McGuires or Mother's will likely
be fine. For show, there are much better products out there. I would
just use the standard stuff if all you're trying to do is keep the water
from pooling and the sun from destroying the finish...
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 12 Feb 2007, 03:35 am
Bucky
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Default Re: How do I care for my car's exterior?

On Feb 11, 6:40 pm, "JS" <pdsnick...@yahoo.com> wrote:
> Just bought a new Civic LX and want to take good care of its paint
> job.


congrats!

> The one drive through place I have used in the past with my old
> car seems relatively gentle, it doesnt' have the big brushes, just
> long mop-like things that hang down, it is assisted by hand-washing
> guys, and then a big dryer then the rest is dried and detailed by
> hand.


I would not let anyone/thing touch my new car: neither machine nor
hand washing guys.

> So those are really my two choices. I could take it and wash it myself
> with the soap wand and rinse wand, or take it to the drive through
> partial machine/ partial hand place.


I would go to the self-wash place. Only use wax that is pure carnauba
wax. Do not use any "polish" waxes on a new car (they have abrasives).
The reason is that you are only cleaning/waxing the clear coat, you
are not cleaning/waxing actual paint.

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  #4 (permalink)  
Old 12 Feb 2007, 11:52 am
Robert Barr
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Default Re: How do I care for my car's exterior?

JS wrote:

> So those are really my two choices. I could take it and wash it myself
> with the soap wand and rinse wand, or take it to the drive through
> partial machine/ partial hand place.
>
> What's the opinion?
>
> I was thinking that if I hand wax it, with a good wax (which one??)
> then the methods of wash probably won't be that destructive. (??)
>


Especially if you have alloy wheels:

At least once a month, get the bucket w/ soapy water & terry cloth, and
get out there and scrub the brake dust from the wheels. Be sure to get
any part of the wheel that is visible. (On my EX Civic, the inner band
of the rim is finished & visible between the spokes, so I have to reach
back in there & scrub). Then visit your car wash; that should be
adequate to rinse the wheels.

If you neglect this, the brake dust will permanently discolor your
alloys and the car will never look as good.

In the winter here in Chicago, I take advantage of any break in the
weather, so I was able to scrub my wheels just before New Year's.
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  #5 (permalink)  
Old 15 Feb 2007, 04:56 pm
JS
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How do I care for my car's exterior?

On Feb 12, 12:52 pm, Robert Barr <n...@for.harvest> wrote:
> JS wrote:
> > So those are really my two choices. I could take it and wash it myself
> > with the soap wand and rinse wand, or take it to the drive through
> > partial machine/ partial hand place.

>
> > What's the opinion?

>
> > I was thinking that if I hand wax it, with a good wax (which one??)
> > then the methods of wash probably won't be that destructive. (??)

>
> Especially if you have alloy wheels:
>
> At least once a month, get the bucket w/ soapy water & terry cloth, and
> get out there and scrub the brake dust from the wheels. Be sure to get
> any part of the wheel that is visible. (On my EX Civic, the inner band
> of the rim is finished & visible between the spokes, so I have to reach
> back in there & scrub). Then visit your car wash; that should be
> adequate to rinse the wheels.
>
> If you neglect this, the brake dust will permanently discolor your
> alloys and the car will never look as good.
>
> In the winter here in Chicago, I take advantage of any break in the
> weather, so I was able to scrub my wheels just before New Year's.


Don't have alloy wheels.
But I'm still torn between using a self-service wash which has those
brushes which are sometimes dirty and don't look very soft, verses
taking it to the "car wash" where they have those big mop like things,
but no brushes, and finished by hand). Since I can't wash it at home
with a bucket and hose (have no hose or faucet available for this),
it's a tough choice. What a dilemma! With my old car, I just took it
to the car wash.

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  #6 (permalink)  
Old 16 Feb 2007, 03:02 am
Bucky
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How do I care for my car's exterior?

On Feb 15, 2:56 pm, "JS" <pdsnick...@yahoo.com> wrote:
> taking it to the "car wash" where they have those big mop like things,
> but no brushes, and finished by hand).


Just think about how many cars that big mop-like thing has cleaned.
All the dirt, debris, bird poop, that's in there.

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  #7 (permalink)  
Old 16 Feb 2007, 09:11 pm
JS
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Default Re: How do I care for my car's exterior?

On Feb 16, 1:02 am, "Bucky" <uw_badg...@email.com> wrote:
> On Feb 15, 2:56 pm, "JS" <pdsnick...@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
> > taking it to the "car wash" where they have those big mop like things,
> > but no brushes, and finished by hand).

>
> Just think about how many cars that big mop-like thing has cleaned.
> All the dirt, debris, bird poop, that's in there.


Right, this is a minor albeit hard to resolve dilemma!
Do I go with the brush at the car wash, which has been used on all
that same gunk, or the mop at the car wash?
The one thing I am thinking, though, is that I do see a lot more nice
newer cars being cleaned at the car wash than at the self-service wash.

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  #8 (permalink)  
Old 17 Feb 2007, 07:18 pm
who
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Default Re: How do I care for my car's exterior?

In article <1171580218.196560.232440@q2g2000cwa.googlegroups. com>,
"JS" <pdsnickles@yahoo.com> wrote:

> verses
> taking it to the "car wash" where they have those big mop like things,
> but no brushes, and finished by hand).

Take your own soft wash mitt and a brush for the wheels.
Use Turtle (or equivalent) wax wash soap.
Soak the car first to losen dirt, then wash lightly and hose off with a
fine spray.
Dry with a clean damp towel rubbing very lightly.
Do windows with warm water and chamois.

Don't wax clear coat, you'll scratch it.
This has worked for me for years.
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  #9 (permalink)  
Old 18 Feb 2007, 12:47 am
Joe LaVigne
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: How do I care for my car's exterior?

On Sun, 18 Feb 2007 01:18:47 +0000, who wrote:

> In article <1171580218.196560.232440@q2g2000cwa.googlegroups. com>,
> "JS" <pdsnickles@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
>> verses
>> taking it to the "car wash" where they have those big mop like things,
>> but no brushes, and finished by hand).

> Take your own soft wash mitt and a brush for the wheels.
> Use Turtle (or equivalent) wax wash soap.
> Soak the car first to losen dirt, then wash lightly and hose off with a
> fine spray.
> Dry with a clean damp towel rubbing very lightly.
> Do windows with warm water and chamois.
>
> Don't wax clear coat, you'll scratch it.
> This has worked for me for years.


So, you decided to not read any part of his premise, and just post
irrelevant information? I am sure he thanks you for the help...

In case you were wondering, he cannot wash at home. No access to an
outdoor water supply...

And waxing clear coat is fine. AAMOF, it is recommended by Honda. Just
don't POLISH clear-coat. Car polish has abrasives. Carnauba does not.
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  #10 (permalink)  
Old 20 Feb 2007, 03:07 am
Bucky
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Default Re: How do I care for my car's exterior?

On Feb 16, 7:11 pm, "JS" <pdsnick...@yahoo.com> wrote:
> Do I go with the brush at the car wash, which has been used on all
> that same gunk, or the mop at the car wash?


Oh, I was thinking that if you went to the self-car wash, you would
bring your own clean sponge. I would not use anyone else's mop/sponge/
brush on my brand new car.

> The one thing I am thinking, though, is that I do see a lot more nice
> newer cars being cleaned at the car wash than at the self-service wash.


I think that is irrelevant. IMO, the reason for that is that people
with nice new cars are willing to pay more to have their car washed
and waxed (and more frequently).

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