This is the final part of the mini series on how I prepare our cars for weddings and executive travel and specifically steps 5, 8 & 9 I mentioned in the first blog on the series a few weeks ago.
- Use a clay cloth with juice to remove the deeper road grime
- Apply deep polish to remove swirls etc and polish off with clean microfibre cloth
- Apply deep carnauba wax to lock in the shine and give further protection and buff up with clean microfibre cloth
Initially, it is all about preparing the surfaces ready for polish, which is done with the clay cloth. Some people use a clay bar or clay mitt and which ever you use is all about personal preference. Although I am not sponsored by them, I have been giving a shout out to the supplier I buy all my detailing products from and this edition is no exception, so once again The Clay Cloth Company (CCC) have all these products online and I fully recommend them and their service, and a lot of the detail descriptions I have been giving of these products is taken from their website.
So what is a clay cloth used for and why? It is an effective method of removing bonded contaminants from the surface of exterior automotive finishes and glass. Decontamination of the paint surface is critical in order to take correct care of automotive paintwork for a multitude of reasons. For exceptional results using clay car cleaning products, the removal of contaminates before polishing provides a clean canvas, preventing dragging particles across the panel during the polishing stage which will actually produce a marring effect, resulting in a duller finish. Marring can only be corrected by machine polishing with compound, to restore the lustre; this process can be both time consuming and expensive even for the professional and is not without risk either. Poor skill levels when machine polishing can produce burn through, which will require a visit to the body shop. Other potential hazards include leaving swirl marks or compound trapped in awkward areas, which look unsightly.
Having mentioned the above, currently I do not use a machine polisher, and that is one of my next acquisitions, so at the moment I polish and wax by hand.
To assist the clay cloth process, I also use Dodo Juice from the CCC, which applied with shampoo and water, help keep the clay cloth moist and working most effectively.
Once the surfaces have ben fully clayed, rinsed and dried off the next stage is applying the polish.
Currently, I use ‘A Grade Refinishing Glaze’, which is a very easy on and easy off polish that can be worked into the surface, providing a good base upon which to apply the wax.
I use Killerwaxx Carnauba Paste Wax which again is very easy on and easy off, which includes Grade #1 Brazilian Carnauba Wax which is 100% pure. It's the strongest you're going to find on the market and will provide valuable protection for 6 months. In my experience, the shine is like no other.
It has been said in the detailing trade that it is difficult to get a deep long lasting shine on silver cars, and as you will know by now our Jaguar XFS is silver and we make sure that our clients travel in a clean and shiny vehicle to all their destinations.
Finally to answer the question about how frequently to I wash and clean the cars - this depends on the frequency of the weddings and executive travel jobs we do.
Our commitment is to ensure that our cars are in a pristine condition inside and out every time we present them to our clients, so although they may leave our base in that condition, when we travel to pick up a client, we stop a short distance away and check the cars over and if necessary, wipe them down with a microfibre towel, applying water if necessary and sometimes apply more detailing carnauba wax.
You will also notice when I remember that I use detailing gloves - recommended if you are planning to use any products on a very frequent basis.
Thank you for taking the time to read this series which is not an attempt to provide a tutorial, but just a guide to what we do to prepare our cars.