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Cosmetic Maintenance: Washing, Waxing, Detailing, Bodywork, Protection Anything related to keeping your Camaro clean and in good cosmetic condition.

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Old 06-02-2012, 06:34 PM   #1
BreakingBad
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keeping my camaro clean - no garage, exposed to elements.

Alright so I've 'learned' that my washing style was the 'newbie/idiot/uneducated' style, and I gorged myself on threads and Junkman videos.

Anyway, I literally got new everything - a brand new hose, a quick disconnect system, new nozzle, rubber washers, etc. This will make my job tremendously easier compared to my old, worn out hose with a broken nozzle.

That said...I live in the city, my car is parked out front of my house which means it's always exposed to the elements. I don't mind putting the effort in, but keeping any car clean in such an environment is extremely difficult now with the weather being more unpredictable as ever. I understand the best thing to do is wash w/foam gun, clay, wash, polish, wax. 2 bucket system, grit guards, washing mitts/pads, etc.

I can't polish my car right now, and I'm not sure if I can wax it...seems like I need a tool that can be used to polish, and maybe even wax - i'm not too familiar with the waxing process.

I need some critique of my plan:

For 'extensive' washing (keeping in mind 2 bucket system/foam gun always used):

- wash, clay, wash, dry (cascade method, then use high quality drying towel from adam's etc) then wax monthly or whatever timeframe would be recommended once i have the equipment.

For 'quick' washing:

- wash, dry.

I think that given I am consistent, this above method should keep my paint in above average condition for the next few years - do you all agree? Any tips/recommendations on how often, when to polish and wax, etc.

Keep in mind, there are some out there who pamper their vehicles - garage kept, washed/polished/waxed often...I have to do what is within my abilities, and working full time + overtime while factoring in LIFE makes it impossible to wash my car as many talk about! Different paths, right?

Anyway, any input would be appreciated. I just placed an order with adam's for:

- 2 buckets w/grit guard
- adam's car shampoo
- adam's car wash pad (small/big)
- adam's great white mf drying towel
- adam's leather and interior cleaner

next buy:

- wax (open to recommendations)
- leather conditioner
- ??
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Old 06-02-2012, 06:47 PM   #2
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Try to get a clay bar to remove any contamination that has fallen on your paint when It left the factory. You can wash it outside you place when you can and from there you can clay the paint first before anything else. If you want to use a wax then there's only one that comes my mind it's the Collinite Super Doublecoat Auto Wax 476s. This is one heck of a wax that will last about 6 months and because of the winter I highly recommend it to protect your paint if you what to use a wax.

Remember to wash, clay and protect your finish if your not going to polish till you find a place to do this.
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Old 06-03-2012, 12:57 PM   #3
BreakingBad
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edit - just checked out your site. looks like the same exact clay junkman uses:

http://www.autopia-store.org/Clay-Ba...rade-Blue.html

how often should you clay? every wash? every other? only when i can see surface contaminants?
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Old 06-03-2012, 02:41 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BreakingBad View Post
edit - just checked out your site. looks like the same exact clay junkman uses:

http://www.autopia-store.org/Clay-Ba...rade-Blue.html

how often should you clay? every wash? every other? only when i can see surface contaminants?
After you've washed, take a plastic sandwich bag, put your hand in it and very gently rub the paint. If it feels smooth, then you don't need to clay. If you feel little bits of grit or something similar, you'll need to clay. Although there are others, this is one of the most comprehensive guides to cleaning, maintaining and polishing your car....

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/40839332/Ada...renceGuide.pdf
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Old 06-03-2012, 04:19 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BreakingBad View Post
edit - just checked out your site. looks like the same exact clay junkman uses:

http://www.autopia-store.org/Clay-Ba...rade-Blue.html

how often should you clay? every wash? every other? only when i can see surface contaminants?
Wrong site your looking at, here is the correct one:

Detailing Clay

You will only need to clay when you do the so call baggie test on the paint to see if it's needed. About 2-3 times a year if your parking outside and driving everyday.
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Old 06-03-2012, 05:11 PM   #6
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I also bought a California car duster and a car cover. I dust the car before putting on the cover, not to scratch the car putting on the cover and now I can go a week with my car looking like I parked it in a garage. And yes, keep it waxed so elements don't wast your paint.
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Old 06-03-2012, 05:18 PM   #7
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Car cover outside will probably do more harm than just letting mother nature have her way.

Debris will always make its way under, and the wind will abuse that on your paint.

Just imo.

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Old 06-04-2012, 01:39 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Stinkpickle View Post
Car cover outside will probably do more harm than just letting mother nature have her way.

Debris will always make its way under, and the wind will abuse that on your paint.

Just imo.

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+1

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Old 06-04-2012, 03:10 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stinkpickle View Post
Car cover outside will probably do more harm than just letting mother nature have her way.

Debris will always make its way under, and the wind will abuse that on your paint.

Just imo.

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 2
+2
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Old 06-04-2012, 05:21 PM   #10
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Never use a car cover. I would suggest cleaning the car only when it's dirty to keep the paint from being scratched (learned this lesson from experience). I suggest using a high quality product from Adams (if you use a PC) or Zaino if you like to apply by hand. These are much more durable protectors of your paint. I use one or both of those a few times a year while using quick detailer after each wash. My car has been outside for almost 2 years and still looks showroom new.

ps - the adams product for rubber/trim health is amazing)
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Old 06-04-2012, 05:36 PM   #11
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don't have a garage and my Camaro looks very good 95% of the time, labor of love keeping her clean and pristine! getting a Metro dryer sooner or later, next big purchase
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Old 06-04-2012, 10:18 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stinkpickle View Post
Car cover outside will probably do more harm than just letting mother nature have her way.

Debris will always make its way under, and the wind will abuse that on your paint.

Just imo.

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+3 haha. I learned from experience that the outdoor car covers only make matters worse. Better to just wash and get stuff like bird crap off immediately
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Old 06-08-2012, 10:01 AM   #13
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Thinking long term, what's more important? Preventing some swirl marks or preventing paint degradation and chalking/fading of plastic trim? The car cover would help prevent the latter if used regularly. Theoretically, a strict waxing and trim dressing regimen would do the same thing, but I've always questioned the legitimacy of a wax's protective properties. I still wax once a month, but I can't help but wonder if it's really helping.
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