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Old 06-30-2009, 02:13 PM   #12
Drives: Bird
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 266
Well if you want the best possible outcome, time is one thing you have to spend. If you are just going to slap a coat of wax on there and nothing else, you arent going to get nearly the potential out of your car as you actually could.

Honestly, I've tried zaino and trophicare, and I get every bit as good results using meguiars products, but getting those results is a little more involved than just throwing some wax on there. You need to come up with a good routine. I'm a little of a meguiars fanboy, so if that might bother anyone read no further.

This is what I do-

1. Wash the car using dawn dishsoap. The dawn will completely strip any wax, and almost all contaminates, whatever it leaves you can get off with a claybar. A claybar will strip off wax too, and some people say dawn is overkill, but honestly, its not going to hurt your paint, and the less work the claybar has to do, the easier it'll be when you clay it.

2. Claybar. Even if you only have a couple hundred miles on your car, you need to clay it. You will get contaminates on your paint simply washing it will not remove, and you need the cleanest surface possible before you start putting on polish/wax. Any crap that gets left on your paint when you put wax on gets trapped in by the wax and will screw up your paint. I've actually never used a meguiars claybar, I still have a nice stock of zaino ones that work quite nicely. I use a quick detalier spray when I'm claying, you want to use it to lubricate the claybar. Spray down a small area and rub it down with the claybar until it is completely smooth, when you're done you should be able to put your hand in a plastic bag, rub it over the paint and feel no bumps whatsoever. Clay the entire car to this standard.

3. Wash with dishsoap again, you need to get the residue of the detailer spray off of the paint.

4. Polish. I personally use meguiars #7 show car glaze. Being that your car is black, you might consider using their #9 swirl remover or #80 swirl remover to combat swirl marks, considering your car is brand new you might get away with a normal polish like the #7. Just make sure to follow the directions exactly as it says on the container. Like on the #7, it says apply only to a cool surface, in the shade, and to use sparingly. If you don't follow any single one of those directions, its gonna be a pain in the ass and look like crap.

5. Wax. I use a coat of meguiars nxt 2.0 followed by a coat of meguiars #26 yellow wax. The #26 is essentially a caranuba wax with some synthetic stuff mixed in. I like putting the nxt on first because the nxt has cleaners mixed in with the wax that would mess with something neutral like the #26. I put one coat of the nxt, and wait about 12 hours, this way it gives the wax time to 'cure' almost, it is litterally setting up bonds over your paint at a molecular level after you put it on. You probably wouldnt notice a difference if you waited, but I'm sorta anal about it. After 12 hours I put on a coat of the #26, and usually like to wait a couple hours at least before I drive it so the second coat can get set up too. Just like with the polish, follow the directions exactly as the container says, most importantly if it says use sparingly, do it, if you don't youre gonna get poor results. The only problem with the nxt and the #26 is they don't last long at all. For a daily driver I wouldnt expect more than 2-3 months before you needed to do everything all over again. Meguiars also has a line synthetic sealants which should look as good as and last longer than regular wax, their #20 and #21, I have no experience with them but I'd imagine they would be every bit as good as zaino.

Just in general, work completely in the shade, every step, washing, claying, polishing, and waxing. Surface prep is the biggest factor in getting your car to look good, if you put polish and wax over a crappy looking dirty car, its gonna come out looking crappy and dirty. If you're gonna wait between coats of wax keep your car in a place with NO dust or dirt, like a really clean garage, and no where outside. After I'm done I like to use meguiars ultimate quick detailer spray after I wash it, every couple washes, its pretty mush just a synthetic sealant, and its good for adding some shine and helping everything last longer between waxings.

I've gotten most of my (miss)information from the forums on the meguiars website. They have very active moderators who would be happy to answer damn near any question you could imagine about detailing your car.
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