Keeping your car clean is important and not always easy, but cleaning your car at home is best! You may think all there is to keeping your car clean is a quick rinse, sudsy wash and drying it with a towel, but there is much more to keeping it clean and doing it the right way. Keep in mind, newer cars may take less work than older cars and each type or model of car may need different car cleaning methods and products.
Before starting the cleaning process, purchase microfiber cloths and separate them for use – one set for the exterior wash, for wheels and for windows. Also, purchase sponges or car mitts and compatible cleaning materials for the brand of vehicle and for chrome vs. aluminum wheels. Now, for the best practices for cleaning your car at home:
1. First, rinse your entire car to remove excess dirt and buildup to prevent scratches.
2. Next, wash the wheels with a safe cleaner for all wheels, then use a brush for washing the tires. When finished, empty the buckets and rinse all of your cleaning materials. Alternatively, an electric pressure washer can make quick work of the tires. Check out thebestelectricpressurewasher.com for more info.
3. Use car washing soap and add to a clean bucket of water. Since the bottom part is dirtiest, with a clean car mitt, wash the windows and the top half, all around the car, then wash the lower half. Another bucket with clean water should be used to continually rinse your car mitt or sponge, so dirt won’t grind into your paint, making scratch marks. Extra scrubbing and cleaner may be needed for bugs, tar and other spots.
4. After checking out the results of your fantastic washing job, it’s time for rinsing! There are two options: using a nozzle to spray off the suds or no nozzle, called the “sheeting method” (experts recommend), to allow water to slide off, giving a more thorough rinse.
5. Next comes the drying part. Always dry your car to prevent water spots – never air dry! Using a microfiber towel or a synthetic chamois, dry the windows and mirrors first, then work your way around, top to bottom. Next use another microfiber towel to dry your wheels.
6. If a coat of wax is not being applied after this wash, finish the process by protecting your exterior with a wax or spray sealant to give a shiny appearance.
Cleaning the interior:
1. Remove the floor mats and clean thoroughly using a scrub brush and a cleaning solution mixed in water, then let air dry.
2. Vacuum the upholstery and floors. If cloth upholstery, you may need to do some spot cleaning first; for leather, use a cleaner specifically for leather.
3. To clean and protect the vinyl, use a spray or cream cleaner with a soft cloth.
Some final tips: To protect the paint and prevent splotches, never wash your car in direct sunlight or when it’s too hot! Don’t think of it as work: enjoy the outdoors
and HAVE FUN!!