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View Full Version : How to keep my Jet Black 3 series looking new


maller
04-18-2011, 07:15 AM
I just picked up a 2008 335 in Jet Black. It does look great, could almost pass for new.

Any opinions on waxes/polishes/techniques to keeping it looking new? I've been a big fan of Mothers products in the past but would love to hear your opinions.

Thank you.

Djay1
04-18-2011, 09:43 AM
You might try Zainostore.com. They come highly recommended by detailing enthusiasts. Their products are especially noted for handling swirl marks on black vehicles. They are somewhat pricey.

No first hand experience yet.

PartyBoyWA
04-18-2011, 10:22 AM
I can keep my car clean for a year just by leaving it in the garage. Zero effort on my part. May work for you if you have a garage.

(Sorry. Had to do it. Free bump if nothing else.)

But I think most here will recommend you search the forum a little more before you expect too much detail from the fest-vets. There's a wealth of info if you search.

iwanna330cic
04-18-2011, 10:45 AM
I've had four black cars, and am about to get yet another one. Yes - I am a glutton for punishment, but I can't help it. These things just look so good in black! Here's a site that will help you with general ideas:

http://www.autopia-carcare.com/how-to.html

and here are the "Top 11 secrets of auto detailers"....

http://www.cnn.com/2008/LIVING/wayoflife/10/15/aa.auto.detailing.secrets/index.html

Probably the most important two issues are don't use automatic car washes, and use two buckets to wash / clean your car. You will see what I mean if you check out the two sites above. No matter what you do, your freshly cleaned and polished jet black bimmer will look dirty just minutes after you finish cleaning it. Just be prepared, but don't fret!

Doug

Ilovemycar
04-18-2011, 10:49 AM
Probably the most important two issues are don't use automatic car washes, and use two buckets to wash / clean your car. You will see what I mean if you check out the two sites above. No matter what you do, your freshly cleaned and polished jet black bimmer will look dirty just minutes after you finish cleaning it. Just be prepared, but don't fret!

That's what I've been doing for my Space Gray, but I just recently acquired a foam gun! :D (I've yet to use it, maybe this weekend.) I don't have to depend on the mitt to mechanically apply the soap now, and before the mitt ever hits the paint, the soap already had time to start lubricating/cleaning the dirt/grime off.

Chop362
04-18-2011, 02:54 PM
You will never win the battle of black cars it's almost impossible. I swear even the wind scratches it. Oh and Muthers is fine....Zaino or Zymol also good

spacey
04-18-2011, 07:28 PM
The interior is my beast. I have scratches on the badge interior at the door and the arm rest. Can you repaint this? I have looked for touch up paint with no luck. Ideas??

Emission
04-18-2011, 09:20 PM
I'm moving this to the detail forum... thank me later. ;)

- Mike

grapes87
04-19-2011, 06:48 AM
It's impossible for me.

I have my own garage, so its "safe" at home. At work, there is no assigned parking, and even though A) its covered and B) I look for safe spots, it still gets little scratches. It's a never ending battle -- no dings yet, just thin scratches that I can only see in the right lighting conditions and when the car is clean.

I will say that the one thing to try to do is remove bird crap as soon as you can (for the times its not covered.) The few times I'm not covered and parked, I always seem to get crap on my car.

I keep a MF towel and some quick detail spray to remove it. I'm sure my MF towel is full of nasty bacteria/viruses from the bird crap.

TOGWT
04-20-2011, 03:24 AM
Dual Bucket Washing System (Grit Guard® Insert)

Ironically, washing your vehicle can actually damage the paint finish because grit in the wash brush or mitt can leave scratches in the paint film surface, but with a Grit Guard ® in place at the bottom of the rinse bucket, you simply rub the wash media across the grid type surface to remove any damaging grit.

The professional way to wash any vehicle and avoid surface scratches is by using one bucket to wash and the other to rinse the wash media, doubling your protection against washing induced paint surface swirl marks and scratches.

Essentially the two bucket washing process provides one bucket that holds sufficient carwash concentrate, one that is formulated with surfactants that encapsulate and lift any grit particles, storing them in the fibres of the washing media to be rinsed off in the Grit Guard® bucket, thus allowing any debris to be dislodged and float down to the bottom to be safely stored, so it***8217;s no longer in the solution ensuring grit-free washing media.

The Gamma Seal® Lid makes the system a water-tight container, perfect for storing or transporting your car care products to Concours d***8217;élégance or Show car events Being water tight also makes the system portable so you can take your wash water with you.
Each Bucket Dolly is fitted with five-casters and is built to withstand up to 250 pounds, Use the included seat cushion to turn your dual bucket washing system into the perfect detailing stool. (See also Pressure Washer and High Pressure Foam Cannon (Foam Lance) and Gilmour Foam Gun)

Swanicyouth
04-28-2011, 09:59 AM
Menzerna Power Lock Sealant has worked the best on my BSM M Roadster. It actually does seem to minimize any swirls or scratches. High quality stuff and it's pretty cheap. Stay away from anything from the local auto parts store, it's mostly cheap junk IMHO. The 2 bucket method does help, however, I use five dollar buckets from Lowes with grit guards - no need for a hundred dollar bucket.

OctaneGuy
04-30-2011, 01:13 AM
As a professional paint polisher who specializes in black paint, and have owned both a 2005 MINI Cooper S in Jet Black and currently a 2010 MINI Clubman S in Midnight Black, this is what you need to do to maintain your Jet Black 335.

1.) Stop touching your paint.
Yes literally. Only touch your paint if it's clean. I see people rubbing their paint to remove dust, or put a car cover on a dirty car, or using quick detailers to remove dust, or use California Dusters, even drying your car by rubbing it with a towel can be bad...more on that later.

2.) Know your paint.
Jet Black is BMW's softest paint. Many paint polishers refuse to polish it because it requires special techniques. The last Jet Black (a 550) I worked on, I spent over 30 hours polishing it and it was flawless. Once it's this way, you need to be ultra careful in how you maintain it. The two bucket method is the start in the right direction, but proper technique includes how you soap the car, how you mix the soap to water ratio, how you rinse the paint, how your dry it, and what towels you use.

3.) Accept that dust will settle on your paint.
You can't get away from dust, but if your paint is properly polished and cared for, it will look better than any other black paint that is neglected and clean.

As for your original question...what products you choose are less important than the techniques you intend to maintain your car with. There are many good products out there. I use Prima and I sell it because I enjoy how well they work and I get the end results I desire.

If you're working by hand, you'll want to take advantage of products with fillers. They will improve your finish without too much effort. My preference is to polish paint then maintain carefully and with good products that might contain fillers.

I have a booth at Bimmerfest on May 14 as ShowCarDetailing if you have any questions.

Richard





I just picked up a 2008 335 in Jet Black. It does look great, could almost pass for new.

Any opinions on waxes/polishes/techniques to keeping it looking new? I've been a big fan of Mothers products in the past but would love to hear your opinions.

Thank you.

Todd@properautocare.com
05-02-2011, 08:11 AM
As a professional paint polisher who specializes in black paint, and have owned both a 2005 MINI Cooper S in Jet Black and currently a 2010 MINI Clubman S in Midnight Black, this is what you need to do to maintain your Jet Black 335.

1.) Stop touching your paint.
Yes literally. Only touch your paint if it's clean. I see people rubbing their paint to remove dust, or put a car cover on a dirty car, or using quick detailers to remove dust, or use California Dusters, even drying your car by rubbing it with a towel can be bad...more on that later.

2.) Know your paint.
Jet Black is BMW's softest paint. Many paint polishers refuse to polish it because it requires special techniques. The last Jet Black (a 550) I worked on, I spent over 30 hours polishing it and it was flawless. Once it's this way, you need to be ultra careful in how you maintain it. The two bucket method is the start in the right direction, but proper technique includes how you soap the car, how you mix the soap to water ratio, how you rinse the paint, how your dry it, and what towels you use.

3.) Accept that dust will settle on your paint.
You can't get away from dust, but if your paint is properly polished and cared for, it will look better than any other black paint that is neglected and clean.

As for your original question...what products you choose are less important than the techniques you intend to maintain your car with. There are many good products out there. I use Prima and I sell it because I enjoy how well they work and I get the end results I desire.

If you're working by hand, you'll want to take advantage of products with fillers. They will improve your finish without too much effort. My preference is to polish paint then maintain carefully and with good products that might contain fillers.

I have a booth at Bimmerfest on May 14 as ShowCarDetailing if you have any questions.

Richard

Great post Richard!

TOGWT
05-09-2011, 03:46 AM
As a professional paint polisher who specializes in black paint, and have owned both a 2005 MINI Cooper S in Jet Black and currently a 2010 MINI Clubman S in Midnight Black, this is what you need to do to maintain your Jet Black 335.

1.) Stop touching your paint.
Yes literally. Only touch your paint if it's clean. I see people rubbing their paint to remove dust, or put a car cover on a dirty car, or using quick detailers to remove dust, or use California Dusters, even drying your car by rubbing it with a towel can be bad...more on that later.

2.) Know your paint.
Jet Black is BMW's softest paint. Many paint polishers refuse to polish it because it requires special techniques. The last Jet Black (a 550) I worked on, I spent over 30 hours polishing it and it was flawless. Once it's this way, you need to be ultra careful in how you maintain it. The two bucket method is the start in the right direction, but proper technique includes how you soap the car, how you mix the soap to water ratio, how you rinse the paint, how your dry it, and what towels you use.

3.) Accept that dust will settle on your paint.
You can't get away from dust, but if your paint is properly polished and cared for, it will look better than any other black paint that is neglected and clean.

As for your original question...what products you choose are less important than the techniques you intend to maintain your car with. There are many good products out there. I use Prima and I sell it because I enjoy how well they work and I get the end results I desire.

If you're working by hand, you'll want to take advantage of products with fillers. They will improve your finish without too much effort. My preference is to polish paint then maintain carefully and with good products that might contain fillers.

I have a booth at Bimmerfest on May 14 as ShowCarDetailing if you have any questions.

Richard

Very informative post

Would you elaborate on 2. Know your paint. Thanks

OctaneGuy
05-09-2011, 08:35 AM
Thanks Todd!
Great post Richard!

TOGWT- Sure. If an owner of a Jet Black vehicle wants to maintain his paint in the best possible way, he needs to understand that his paint is ultra soft. That means going to the nth degree to prevent anything from marring or scratching the paint.

This includes "Controlling Who Touches Your Paint"--don't let the dealer wash it, don't take it to the local car wash, don't let ANYONE touch your paint.

Don't Rub Your Paint
If the owner keeps in mind that his paint is ultra soft, he should be less apt to do things like show someone a scratch and wiping off the dirt with his shirt or his bare hands. I see that all the time. They want me to see something under the dirty paint, so they brush off the dirt with their hands...marring it further in the process.

Car Covers Are Evil
Some owners think that a car cover will solve their problems. Once again, if you know your paint, you know that wrestling with a cover over a dirty car is going to mar it. So unless you plan to wash it and keep it clean BEFORE covering it, that the process of putting the cover and taking it off will mar your paint. So others might say..."Why not quick detail it?" And I would say because with ultra soft paint, a quick detailer will mar the paint. Unless you work with a product with fillers, swirls will become visible with just a few wipes of a dirty car with even the most slippery of quick detailers.

Master the two/three bucket wash method and be meticulous about every step. If you don't have access to a foam cannon (not foam gun) then do the following.
http://a2.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/215410_10150230200311133_157160866132_9150578_2912 325_n.jpg

Starting with two buckets: One with clean water for rinsing and another with properly measured car wash soap. Distilled water is preferable all the way through, but not everyone has that luxury. I have two water distillers in my shop where I produce about 17 gallons of pure 0ppm distilled water everyday.
http://a8.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash1/165736_10150132361541133_157160866132_8486747_2248 647_n.jpg

Choose a good car wash soap. For a maintenance wash, choose one with polymers if your paint has previously been waxed. Measure out the soap..usually 1oz of soap per gallon. Check the label. Fill the bucket whether 3.5 or 5 gallon bucket with water. Then add the soap. If you like suds, then put about 3 gallons of water in a 5gallon bucket, add the soap, then top it off with water. Suds can help clean the paint but they can also trap particles from your mitt. Use Dirt Guards or Grit Guards at the bottom of each bucket.

Your objective is simple. Safely transfer the dirt from your car into the rinse bucket. Then soap the car with a clean mitt every time. Make sure the paint isn't hot.

You do this by rinsing the car, working in small sections, take the clean soapy lambswool wash mitt (stay away from microfiber mitts---they pick dirt up well, but don't release well). Soap the paint just until the mitt doesn't glide effortlessly. Don't put your hand inside the mitt. Hold the mitt from the back and make sure it's sopping wet and dripping. Flip it over when you feel friction. The first steps are to get the panel wet to begin to soften the dirt. Take that now dirty mitt, put it into the clean rinse water and thoroughly clean the mitt. Wring it out, and put back in the soap bucket and repeat. Keep doing this, remembering that you are trying to take the dirt off without rubbing that dirt into the paint. Later as the car is clean and free of heavy dirt, you can wipe a little harder and further than the initial steps.

Once the paint is rinsed off (make sure you are doing this in the shade so the paint isn't hot) To dry the paint, use the blot technique. Again, don't rub the paint. Even though it's clean, you want to pat dry the paint. A highly absorbent waffle weave like a Belgian is great or an Absorber towel is also great. Once your car is waxed, you can even blow dry the water off which is also great. Some people use an airblower used for gardening. But this only works on paint that is free of bonded contaminants and waxed.

Once the paint is clean, you CAN use a high lubricity quick detailer to wipe up any water spots using a premium microfiber towel. I use an air compressor to blow water from the crevices as well.

Just remember...your paint is soft!!! But you can take steps to treat it like it deserves and maintain a perfect finish all the time if you are willing to do what it takes to maintain this paint. Just one lazy moment at the car wash (hand or machine) or wash at the dealership could ruin your perfect finish.

Richard




Very informative post

Would you elaborate on 2. Know your paint. Thanks