November 6, 2018
Did you recently pimp your ride?
Outdated and wish-it-was-still-on TV show aside, getting a new paint job turns any car into your car.
It’s not cheap, so how do you care for your investment? You can’t just treat your brand new paint job with generic products and expect everything to be OK.
So how do you take care of it to prolong the new paint’s life and keep it looking shiny? You have to replace everything you know about car cleaning with the tips below.
No More Car Washes
We’re not recommending you never clean your car again, quite the opposite. But your life of paying a quick $10 at a gas station car wash is over.
Those care washes are meant to be effective – not necessarily gentle. Some of them use things like salt water to rinse with.
What are three things that don’t go well together? Salt, water, and metal. That’s rust city!
So, you’ll need to invest in cleaning products made for nice cars. We’re talking the kind they sell at auto shops, not whatever you find on the shelf at Walmart.
Look for wording on the packaging that says it won’t damage paint. If you can find it, look for a product that specifically says it protects paint jobs. If you can’t find that specific of a cleaner, get the best one they’ve got.
Products to Buy
Along with a high-quality soap product, you’ll want a conditioner and a wax. Paint conditioners deliver a coating of extra minerals to the paint while waxing seals all the good in and all the bad out.
Cleaning with clay is another option, car clay helps you get the dirt out of paint pores deeper than soap can. Think of it like a clay face mask. but for your car.
The way you apply your wax polish matters. It’s not Mr. Miyagi’s wax on wax off lesson here.
First thing first, read the directions on the wax product you bought. Each brand has slightly different instructions, so there’s not a one size fit all approach.
Wax Your Car
Once you’ve read the directions on your specific brand of wax, make sure your car is fully dry. That means having a microfiber cloth to go over a section you’re about to wax first.
Once the spot is dry, apply the wax with whatever material the bottle suggests. We like a classic buff wax, but that’s just us.
Make sure you don’t forget about places where cars gather the most dirt, like around wheel terminals (still on the body) and the bumper.
Use the Right Tire Cleaner
Tire cleaners are full of nasty chemicals. They have to be to get all that road gunk off, right? Well. . . yes, but try to find one that’s non-acidic.
When the tire gets wet and the product comes off, it can mist or splat particles of the tire cleaner onto your paint.
That’s like putting corrosive fluid right onto your brand new paint job, every time it rains or you hit a puddle.
Protect Your (Clean) Vehicle
When you’re out on the road, your car is exposed to bugs, mud, dust, rain, grease – you name it. Don’t leave it exposed to bird droppings, plant residue or anything else while it’s at home!
Home is your sanctuary from the world- it should be your car’s too. If you have a garage, always park the car with the new paint job in it.
If you don’t have a garage, can you build a carport? If you can’t, invest in a canvas car cover. You can find them on Amazon for most specific models.
Yes, they’re a pain to put on and off – but not nearly as painful as finding a piece of bird poop soaked into your new paint!’
If you don’t want to keep the cover in your car, get an outside bin – like something you find at home depot and stuff the cover in there. If you want it to blend in with your landscaping, look for a big terra-cotta looking plastic pot.
Keep a small to-go cleaning kit in your car for when you’re out and about. If you come back to your car to find a new dirt spot on it, you can grab your to-go kit and spot treat the dirty area.
This extends the amount of time between washes and makes sure things don’t get too stuck on for too long.
You don’t want to leave anything sticky on your car for extended periods of time, especially things like tree sap. It attracts more dirt and gets harder and harder to take off!
Treat The Inside Like the Outside
Even though you didn’t have a paint job done on the inside, keeping the interior clean maintains a sense of pride. When there isn’t junk thrown around the seats, the idea of cleaning won’t seem overwhelming.
Keep a small trash can in your car and make it a point to always take your trash out when you turn off the car.
Avoid Over-sized Items
If you try to get a bike or a couch in the back of a car and it’s a squeeze, you’re likely to scratch some paint on your way in. Borrow someone’s truck or something less brand new to haul large items.
Your New Paint Job
In the interest of maintaining your car’s paint and not wasting your money by ruining your investment, make sure you protect your new paint job. It’s easier than you think and it makes a big difference!
Don’t have a new paint job yet, but are ready for one? Check out our services.
We’ll get you looking good-as-new!