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 Car Detailing : Tips, Tricks & How-to's, by Meguiar
g88
Posted: Aug 24 2007, 03:33 PM


MMC
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Group: WAC Member
Posts: 14,244
Member No.: 7
Joined: 27-January 05



SHOULD I PREP MY PAINT BEFORE WAXING?
Evaluating the condition of your finish will let you determine the steps needed to prepare it for waxing. Just because your paint has no major scratches or other obvious signs of damage doesn't mean its surfaces are as flawlessly smooth as when they were new. There are many kinds of subtle surface defects that, if not corrected, can prevent you from restoring that perfect gloss.


WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A POLISH AND A WAX?
A polish is more like a paint conditioner that restores valuable oils to the paint, eliminates fine scratches and creates incredible high gloss not possible with waxes. An application of a pure polish should be followed by waxing to protect the shine and extend its life.


WHICH IS BETTER – PASTE OR LIQUID WAX?
The difference between paste and liquid wax is primarily one of convenience. Modern liquid formulas provide the same protection as paste, and are easier and quicker to apply.


WHAT IS CARNAUBA WAX?
Carnauba is the hardest natural wax available, harvested from palm trees in Brazil. The wax is melted down and added to Meguiar's formulations to enhance their durability and protection against the environment. Meguiar's uses only #1 yellow Carnauba wax, the most costly and highest quality grade.


DO COLOURED WAXES WORK?
First, there are thousands of car colours used every year. Some paint companies offer over one hundred different reds alone. There is no way that a limited selection of 8-12 different-coloured waxes can hope to match your colour exactly.
Second, most paints today have a top layer of paint that is clear - it does not contain the colour pigments. If you add a pigmented wax on top of the clear surface you are creating an unnatural effect that will look even stranger as the pigments in the wax fade. Imagine applying shoe polish to your windshield, and you can picture what is happening when you apply colour waxes to clear coat paint.
If you are looking to restore colour and gloss from oxidised or faded paint, Meguiar’s Color X will revive colour and remove light scratches and swirls.


IS WASHING AND SURFACE PREP THE SAME?
Washing is the process of removing loose dirt and grime from a car's paint. Surface prep is a separate process designed to safely remove dead, oxidized paint, as well as stubborn surface contamination that will not come off during the washing process (i.e. acid rain, stains, tree, sap).


CAN I GET RID OF STAINS, SPOTS AND SMEARS ON MY CAR?
The best way to get rid of stains, spots and smears is to remove them as quickly as possible, before they have a chance to bake into the paint. If you have stubborn stains, spots or smears, you will need to wash your car and then use a paint surface prep that will safely deep clean the surface and remove the contamination.


CAN I HIDE FINE SCRATCHES IN MY PAINT?
The visible impact of fine scratches can be significantly improved with Meguiar’s Nxt Generation Tech Wax. However we would recommend a surface preparation step prior to this in order to actually remove the fine scratches. Scratch-X will achieve this. If your paint is also oxidised or faded, Color X will dramatically revive colour whilst also removing fine scratches and swirls.
NOTE: If you can catch your fingernail on a scratch, it’s deep and we would recommend you see a professional detailer for help.


HOW LONG DOES WAX LAST?
The life of a wax finish depends on many things:
-Type and colour of paint
-Condition of paint
-Local environment (normal conditions and extraordinary events)
-Number of hours exposed to outside conditions
-Quality of the wax used and method of application.
Your best choice in all cases is to rely on the highest quality surface care products available. That's why Meguiar's guarantees that under identical conditions, "Our wax will outlast the competition."


ARE MULTIPLE COATS OF WAX BENEFICIAL?
Environmental conditions today do demand more frequent waxing to prevent costly damage to the outer layers of paint. However we don't recommend applying two or three coats of wax at one time. While there is some slight incremental protection with each application, you'll gain greater benefits by spreading the same number of applications over a longer period.


WHY MUST I WAX SO OFTEN?
In addition to countless environmental factors, catalytic emissions from the cars in front of you are depositing hydrochloric or sulfuric acid particles on your car's upper surfaces. All of these contaminants take a toll on your car's paint if the finish is not properly maintained.


ORBITAL BUFFER VS. ROTARY BUFFER?
An orbital buffer is specially designed to run in an eccentric circular motion. This safe, random pattern doesn't apply torque to the surface, and assures the buffer never concentrates its energy in one spot, unlike your hand or a regular rotary buffer. If you use a rotary buffer and are not skilled in its use, you can easily apply too much pressure to the paint and burn right through it, requiring a new paint job. For the same reason, do not use buffers that are attached to power drills.


WHAT’S THE BEST WAX FOR MY BRAND NEW CAR?
Any new car will require a non-abrasive wax that is safe for newer paints. Nxt Generation Tech Wax or Meguiar's Gold Class Clear Coat Liquid Wax are excellent products for new car finishes.


DOES QUIK DETAILER REMOVE WAX?
No. Quik Detailer is a specially formulated product designed to add gloss and actually prolong the life of your wax by removing fresh contaminants before they bond.


DOES POLISH NEED TO DRY?
Unlike wax, polish does not need to dry. Thoroughly work it into the surface one section at a time, then immediately remove the excess before beginning the next section.


HOW DO I BEST WIPE OFF POLISH OR WAX AFTER APPLYING WITH AN APPLICATOR PAD?
Meguiar's research has concluded that removing product with our Microfibre Polishing Cloths (AG3030) will produce the best shine with the least effort and the fewest swirls.


HOW LONG SHOULD I LET WAX DRY?
Under normal conditions, wax usually takes 15 to 20 minutes to set. However, if you wipe the finish and the product streaks or smears, you need to allow a little more time for it to harden.


HOW DO I REMOVE THE ROUGH FEELING FROM MY PAINT?
There are many environmental contaminants that adhere to your paint so stubbornly that even a high-quality car wash can't remove them. Meguiar's Quik Clay Detailing System (G1116) is specifically designed to remove many of these bonded surface contaminants.


WHAT CAUSES SWIRL MARKS?
Swirl marks are actually microscopic scratches in the finish. Swirls are often caused by the use of a buffer with the wrong type of polishing pad and/or wax or polish. Automatic car washes can also cause swirls, especially on late model vehicles with clear coat paints. Another way to cause swirl marks is hand application, or removal of products using a harsh material. Pads and cloths that with micro abrasives (from falling on the ground or improper storage) are also a cause of swirls marks. To avoid swirls, thoroughly wash all dirt particles from your finish before applying polish or wax. Always use a 100% terry cloth towel or Meguiar’s Microfibre Polishing cloth (AG3030) because the nap draws any contaminants on the surface into the towel instead of allowing them to scratch the sensitive paint.


HOW CAN I REMOVE SWIRL MARKS FROM MY CARS PAINT SURFACE?
Meguiar’s Scratch-X is clear coat safe & ideal for removing swirl marks/fine scratches from the most sensitive of paint finishes. Used with our foam hand applicator pad, it won’t dull, dull-off or scar the clear coat finish. If your paint is also oxidised or faded, Color X will dramatically revive colour whilst also removing fine scratches and swirls. Always wipe off with our Microfibre polishing cloth (AG3030).
NOTE: If you can catch your fingernail on a scratch, it’s deep and we would recommend you see a professional detailer for help.


WHAT IS CLEAR COAT PAINT?
Today, over 90% of all factory finishes are clear coated. A clear coat finish is a multi-layer paint system comprised of a primer, a base coat (the pigment colour of your car), and a clear coat. Although a clear coat does protect the base coat, it is very sensitive to scratches and swirl marks because of its clear, non-pigmented layer that allows light to reflect through it.


IS NXT GENERATION TECH WAX BETTER THAN OUR OTHER WAXES?
Yes, this new technology is the best wax Meguiar’s has ever produced to date in one easy applied step, and is a synthetic product able to provide a deep dark gloss, with a rich shine and is the ultimate in synthetic polymer protection.


DOES NXT GENERATION TECH WAX CONTAIN ANY ABRASIVES?
No, Nxt is a unique formula that helps to minimise fine swirls without damaging the paint surface. The product is designed to safely remove stubborn stains and fine scratches and swirls, and is suited to all paint finishes including clear coat.


FOR SURFACE PREP, WHATS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN DEEP CRYSTAL PAINT CLEANER (A3016A) & SCRATCH-X (G10307)?
DC paint cleaner safely removes MINOR surface contaminates, mild water spots, light swirls, oxidation, minor stains and scuffmarks.
Scratch-X is our most effective way to remove FINE scratches and swirls by hand and won’t dull off the paint finish. Its great for removing swirl marks & etched in water stains. Also ideal to revive entire paintwork even on the most sensitive of clear coat finishes.


HOW DO I REMOVE TREE SAP FROM MY CARS PAINT?
As long as the sap hasn’t dried & etched into the paint surface it usually can be removed with warm wash solution and rinsed off. However, if it has dried/hardened on the surface, Meguiar’s Quik Clay Detailing System (G1116) is designed to grab these bonded contaminants and remove them without scratching the finish. After using the Quik Clay System we recommend you reapply your favorite Meguiar’s wax/polish.


WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN NON ACID WHEEL CLEANER & HOT RIMS ALL WHEEL CLEANER?
Non-Acid Wheel Cleaner (AA6416) is ideal on all alloy wheels and dress rims including clear coats, painted rims, chrome and plastic. Safe & effective for loosening brake dust and grime buildup.
Non Acid Wheel Cleaner can also be used dry as part of our waterless wash program.
Hot Rims All Wheel Cleaner (G9524) is ideal for all factory-coated wheels which are clear coated. Removes tough road grime/brake dust on wheel surfaces.
NOTE: THIS PRODUCT IS NOT SUITABLE FOR application to aftermarket wheels, Motorcycle wheels, aftermarket brake components, anodized, magnesium, un-coated, or powder-coated wheels.
NOTE: Always check manufactures guidelines on cleaning and maintaining your wheels


ARE OUR GLASS CLEANERS SAFE TO USE ON TINTED WINDOWS?
Meguiar’s No Smear Glass Cleaner (AA6316) and Nxt Generation Glass Cleaner (G13324) are both tint window safe. They do not contain ammonia and are fast cleaning with a crystal clear result.
Always test on small area of tint if not sure.


WHAT PRODUCT TO CLEAN AND PROTECT INTERIOR TRIM?
Meguiar’s Dash & Trim Foam Protectant (G12210) eliminates messy overspray while cleaning, protecting and conditioning the surface without looking greasy. It contains UV sunscreen to prevent fading & premature aging.
Alternatively if you prefer a spray, Natural Shine (G4110) cleans, conditions & protects all vinyl & rubber surfaces. It restores colour/shine providing cleaning agents to remove dirt and grime adding lasting UV protection.
For a fast interior trim touch up and also the cleaning of Audio/visual equipment use Quik Interior Detailer (G13616).


HOW CAN I CLEAN & PROTECT MY SOFT TOP CONVERTIBLE?
“Cloth Fabric” soft-tops, cannot be cleaned using any of our products other than our car wash solutions. Manufacture of this cloth material has inbuilt waterproof protection & using any Meguiar’s cleaner can harm the waterproofing.
We suggest washing with a Meguiar’s car wash solution together with a soft bristle brush, gently agitate to loosen the dirt, then rinse off with a strong flow of water.
However, if the soft top is of vinyl or rubber, Meguiars Natural Shine Protectant (G4110) cleans, conditions and protects vinyl & rubber surfaces, helping to restore a ‘like new’ colour and shine. Contains cleaners to remove dirt and grime while providing UV protection & lasting power.


HOW TO REMOVE POLISH/WAX FROM EXTERIOR RUBBER AND PLASTIC TRIM?
Meguiar’s Gold Class Trim Detailer (G10810) or Cloth & Trim Cleaner (AA6716) are ideal products for removal of polish/wax residue from rubbers. They also restore colour & richness to discoloured trim/mouldings and are suitable for use on all porous & non-porous black trim.


HOW TO CLEAN & MAINTAIN TYRES?
Using a soft bristle brush, scrub the tyres with a Meguiar’s car wash solution or Non Acid Wheel Cleaner (AA6416) and rinse off with a strong flow of water. After drying, Meguiar’s have a range of tyre maintenance products to suit your individual requirements:
Hot Shine Tire Spray Aerosol (G12115). The new adjustable spray nozzle on Hot Shine Tire Coating (G13815) helps to eliminate mess and overspray.
Hot Shine Tire Spray Pump Pack (G12024). The same great high gloss shine with a 2-way adjustable sprayer.
Nxt Generation Insane Shine Tyre Spray (G13115), when high gloss just isn’t shiny enough!
Endurance Tyre Protectant Gel. Apply Gel using an applicator pad to eliminate overspray, runs and drips. Available in “natural” (G7416) and “high gloss” (G7516).


HOW DO I GET THE BEST RESULTS WHEN APPLYING NXT GENERATION WAX TO MY CAR?
When using Tech Wax (G12718 – liquid or G12711 – paste) “less is best”, there is no need to apply this product thickly. Always apply onto a cool, dry and clean paint surface. For cooler temperature regions or in high humidity areas, a longer dry time is required, this allows the wax to set, avoiding smear marks occurring with wipe-off. If you have used too-much product, a longer flash time is needed to allow the wax to “set up” before wipe-off. We recommend using the Meguiar’s Microwipe Polishing Cloth (AG3030) for a faster, cleaner wipe-off.


HOW DO I REPAIR STREAKING THAT OCCURS AFTER A POLISH OR WAX APPLICATION?
Meguiar’s NXT Generation Speed Detailer (G13224) used with our Microwipe Polishing Cloth (AG3030) will safely remove any streaking without scratching and will restore the surface to a brilliant, deep shine. If this fails, reapply the original polish/wax product then quickly wipe-off residue.


IS IT OK TO USE ANY MEGUIAR’S CAR WASH PRODUCT WITH ANY OF THE POLISHES/WAXES, E.G. GOLD CLASS LIQUID CAR WAX OR NXT GENERATION TECH WAX?
All Meguiar’s car wash products are PH neutral, containing no detergent based chemicals that strip away the wax and are therefore safe to use with any of our polishes/waxes. However, it’s best to wash your car with the car wash that has been developed to suit the individual polish/wax. Eg. Gold Class Wax with Gold Class Wash, NXT Generation Tech Wax with NXT Generation Car Wash.


IS PLASTX (G12310) OK TO USE ON PAINTED PLASTIC SURFACES?
PlastX is not suited and we do not recommend it for use on painted plastic surfaces. Meguiar’s Plastic Polish (M1008) and NXT Generation Tech Wax (G12718/G12711) are both non-abrasive and dry clear leaving no white residue. They each have a non-abrasive formula, which is safe to use on smooth painted plastic.


WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FINAL INSPECTION, QUIK DETAILER AND THE NEW NXT GENERATION SPEED DETAILER?
All of these products are in the same family and are designed to enhance the shine and protection of your paint without scratching the surface. NXT Generation Speed Detailer is the newest product in this family and it’s highly advanced formula contains synthetic polymer technology, making it easier to remove fresh surface contaminants by staying “wetter” longer to allow for ease in wipe-off. We recommend using our Meguiar’s Microfibre Polishing Cloth (AG3030) for wipe-off. The choice between these products is a matter of personal preference.


DO YOU HAVE A PRODUCT FOR THE LARGE AREAS OF EXTERIOR TRIM OFTEN USED ON 4 WHEEL DRIVES?
Our newly released Exterior Trim Detailer (G13415) is perfect for this application. After washing and drying the vehicle, apply a thin even coat to shine and protect all non painted plastic surfaces.

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