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View Full Version : Questions about Drying Cars and Waxes


Carboy7
08-02-2011, 04:13 PM
I am finally starting to detail the car by myself, already learning that it's better to wash the car outside in the evening, when it is much, MUCH COOLER (I dream of having a garage everytime). However, I am always learning :D

The first question is, what is the best way to dry a car? AutoZone seems to have crappy towels no matter what, and I prefer to buy things physically. Does an air compressor seem to be a good idea? I already tried a 1.5 gallon, which is obviously useless, and am planning to exchange it for something with 4-8 gallons.

Second, what is the best wax to top off Meguiars NXT 2.0? I am currently using Meguiars NXT 2.0 (applied with some old "Vector" branded random orbital polisher) and although it does great making light colors ultra shiny, it does not satisfy me as it does not making dark colors ultra shiny. Right now, I am thinking of topping NXT 2.0 with carnauba wax, to get both durability and shine; the requirements are that I should be able to get it at AutoZone.

The two waxes that come to mind are Meguiars Gold Class Carnauba wax and Meguiars 26. I have had a small experience with Meguiars 26 when a detailer used it on my car, and my gosh it was beautiful. Are there difference between the wax? Is one easier to use?

Thanks!

bmw_n00b13
08-02-2011, 04:16 PM
Long story short you can't buy the good stuff in a brick and mortar store. I can't answer your question specifically. There's lots of good info here and on detailingworld.

Johnz3mc
08-02-2011, 04:30 PM
Drying:
I use a leaf blower to remove 99% of the surface water. The better the LSP, the better the water is blown away. If you do use towels, use good microfiber or waffle weave ones. Put on the surface and pat the towel. Don't grind the towel into the paint to dry. Pat the towel then move the towel. Pat again.

As for what wax to use, gosh that's a tricky one.
Generally, sealants work best for lighter colours, carnaubas for darker colours.
I wax often so beauty waxes like Pinnacle Souveran or Victoria Concours or Dodo Juice Supernatural works magic on my Imola red and makes the car a real head turner.

Surface prep is the key to a good wax effect. The better the surface is prepped through buffing/polishing with a DA or rotary, the better the wax will look.
So much to learn, so much to digest.
I'm going to go grab a burger and a beer.
Good luck,
-John C.

Carboy7
08-02-2011, 08:31 PM
Have you had any experience with the Meguiars products? I always love the fact you can find them anywhere

csmeance
08-02-2011, 09:03 PM
Your best bet for drying is to uses the "drying with water method" where you take off the hose nozzle and let the water simply come out of the end of the hose and use surface tension to simply sheet off completely. You'll be left with a few dabbles of water that you can pat dry with MF towels that you can find at autozone.

As far as waxes, see if you can pick up any Duragloss products near you. They make some GREAT stuff that's OTC and you can find them at these stores:
http://www.duragloss.com/duragloss-stores.asp

Their Duragloss 105/106 is amazing!
http://www.duragloss.com/product.asp?pid=336

It lasts for a decent amount of time and gets a great shine to it!

EDIT: even though duragloss calls them "polishes", 101, 105 and 111 are all sealants that you can use.

jfs356
08-03-2011, 04:27 AM
You cannot go wrong with most any Meguiar's products, I love their Gold Class wax for my Alpina White. That is all I have any experience with. Might give the NXT 2.0 a try next.

Munich77
08-03-2011, 06:39 AM
Have you had any experience with the Meguiars products? I always love the fact you can find them anywhere

Meguire's products are great. If you want to step up a bit have a look at Autolgym (Pepboys) or Griots (Autozone). Both are more boutique brands with excellent products. One detailer's secrete is Collonite. Those waxes are hard to find but they are cheap (less than $20 for 845) and have phenomenal durability and looks.

As others have said try a leaf blower for drying.

Wine-O
08-03-2011, 08:09 AM
Does anybody use a chamois to dry the car?

Bimmernut68
08-03-2011, 02:19 PM
I have used a chamois in the past but it left a residual film that i did not like. I now use Adam's Great White Microfiber Drying Towel. It is 26" by 40" and will safely dry your car, after you sheet your car. (This sheeting method was discussed in a prior post.)

Finally, like others who have written in the Detailing Forum, I use a leaf blower to remove any water in the nooks and crannies of my BMW.

Once these tasks are finished, I apply wax, polish...

Carboy7
08-03-2011, 04:32 PM
You cannot go wrong with most any Meguiar's products, I love their Gold Class wax for my Alpina White. That is all I have any experience with. Might give the NXT 2.0 a try next.
NXT 2.0 I've heard is great for durability and from my experience does great with light metallic colors; with dark colors, I'd stick with carnauba wax. I just contacted Meguiars and they said to top Meguiars NXT with Gold Class Carnauba so the next time I can wax the car I will use it.

Does anybody use a chamois to dry the car?

Eh, I'm not really a fan of chamois. It's really hard to manage considering they can easily scratch paint if you pull it on the car to dry, plus you have to wash it really well to keep it clean and scratch; if you must insist of buying locally or getting something like a chamois, the Absorber towel seems really promising, but only if you use the blotting method. I'm planning on giving it a try. If it's $10 there's nothing much to lose if it actually does the job for half the price of a waffle weave towel.

Living Dead
08-06-2011, 01:17 PM
I have used a natural chamois since I started driving in '82. I only found that they would leave a "film" when new and after a couple of uses there was no more streaking.

You have to be very careful about keeping them clean by rinsing frequently during use and a complete wash if dropped, I never found a man-made chamois that lasted very long and dried the car as completely as a natural one (don't ever dry it in the sun as it will greatly shorten its life). I always started by using the method mentioned above "using water to dry."

Recently I discovered the leaf-blower method on this site :thumbup:and I don't think I'll ever use another, it blows the water out of all the hidden places like the mirrors and door handles that continue to drip long after the car has been dried leaving drip-marks:mad:.

As far as waxes I've not had much luck finding anything I really like (I've got boxes of partially used bottles in my garage from the last 20 years) so I go with what is easiest and I've found that Turtle Wax Ice products go on and off very easily which makes it very easy to protect the car monthly although I don't think they are very favored by Bimmerfest members:dunno:.

Bethesda E39
08-31-2011, 10:39 AM
Here's what I have been doing on my 1 year old (red) 128i:

Do the usual Dawn wash, clay bar, sealant, wax every few months (I use Meguiar's Gold Class).

Between waxes, I wash the car 1-2 times a week (2 bucket method). To dry the car, I use clean microfiber towels and Turtle Wax spray wax ("Wax and Dry")...$5 a bottle from Target. I use liberal amounts of the stuff and about 5-6 (14"x14") MF towels. It takes me longer to dry the car than to wash it.
This keeps the surface sufficiently protected / waxed to mitigate scratching from drying (I just wipe...no blotting).

In consideration of the fact that I park on the street, under a tree, and don't waste my money on boutique brand waxes, polishes or buffers (everything I do is by hand), the car looks outstanding.

Munich77
09-02-2011, 11:18 AM
Bethesda E39 - if you have access to a plug buy yourself a cheap electronic leaf blower. Similar to your method I use a quick detailer and towel dry method. Using the leaf blower before the blow away most of the water has really sped up things for me.

djfitter
09-02-2011, 11:47 AM
I also use a leaf blower and in addition I use de-ionized water for the final rinse so there wouldn't be water spots even if I didn't blow off the water.

dj

Bumer
09-02-2011, 01:36 PM
Have you had any experience with the Meguiars products? I always love the fact you can find them anywhere

I have full shelf of Meguiar's products in my garage that I use all the time. I'm pretty happy with their products, except for wheel cleaner (it goes very fast for the price).

For drying, I use shammy to get most of the water from the car, and then do second round of drying cloth.

Meguire's products are great. If you want to step up a bit have a look at Autolgym (Pepboys) or Griots (Autozone). Both are more boutique brands with excellent products. One detailer's secrete is Collonite. Those waxes are hard to find but they are cheap (less than $20 for 845) and have phenomenal durability and looks.

As others have said try a leaf blower for drying.

Was looking at Griots wheel cleaner set the other day? Do you know if their wheel cleaners is any good?

3ismagic#
09-02-2011, 03:00 PM
If you are looking for an inexpensive wax that will last and has great shine I recommend Einszett Glanz. It combines the protection and durability of a synthetic with the deep wet shine of carnauba.

http://www.autogeek.net/1z-einzett-glanz-wax.html

Living Dead
09-02-2011, 06:54 PM
[QUOTE=B Do you know if their wheel cleaners is any good?[/QUOTE]

I have found that wheel cleaner works best only if a scrubbing device is used too as it takes some friction to remove all the grime. Having said that I now just use what ever I'm using to wash the paint and it does just as good a job as expensive wheel cleaner, I clean the wheels last with the solution left in the bucket. I use a toilet brush to get in deep inside the wheel and a soft brush for the outside, it takes about a minute a wheel and saves a lot of money and not harsh chemicals either:thumbup:.

I also use a washing mit to get at the back side of the spokes on my wheels then finish the car with a quick blow from my leaf blower, which works especially well on the wheels so no black drip marks are visible.

Bumer
09-02-2011, 07:26 PM
I have found that wheel cleaner works best only if a scrubbing device is used too as it takes some friction to remove all the grime. Having said that I now just use what ever I'm using to wash the paint and it does just as good a job as expensive wheel cleaner, I clean the wheels last with the solution left in the bucket. I use a toilet brush to get in deep inside the wheel and a soft brush for the outside, it takes about a minute a wheel and saves a lot of money and not harsh chemicals either:thumbup:.

I also use a washing mit to get at the back side of the spokes on my wheels then finish the car with a quick blow from my leaf blower, which works especially well on the wheels so no black drip marks are visible.

Thanks for advise, I'll have to use it next time. Just need to get new dedicated mitt for wheels. This way it definitely beats wheel cleaners in terms of price.

Wihelm G
09-19-2011, 08:58 PM
Was looking at Griots wheel cleaner set the other day? Do you know if their wheel cleaners is any good?

The Griot's Wheel Cleaner is excellent. It cleans quite well, yet is mild enough you can use your fingers to get into the small nooks with the WC on a finger mitt or sponge and it doesn't burn your skin. It has a pleasant scent, too. I buy it in the gallon jugs, but use it in the regular 35oz. bottle because it foams it as it comes out. This is what works for me:
1. Do one wheel at a time.
2. Rinse the wheel with a blast of water from the hose or just distilled water from a spray bottle or pump type garden sprayer.
3. Spritz on some Wheel Cleaner. Let it set at least 30 seconds, then agitate with something. A 1 or 2 inch paintbrush works, as does the 3 finger mitt Griots sells. A regular sponge works-- cut it in half and throw it away when finished with all four wheels.
4. Rinse off with water from hose or pump sprayer.
5. Optional extra step: Spritz some ONR, Eco Touch or Quik Detailer.
6. Dry with MF towel.
Do this regularly and it's a lot easier. Switch to Akebono brake pads and it it becomes easier still.

Munich77
09-22-2011, 06:01 AM
The Griot's Wheel Cleaner is excellent. It cleans quite well, yet is mild enough you can use your fingers to get into the small nooks with the WC on a finger mitt or sponge and it doesn't burn your skin. It has a pleasant scent, too. I buy it in the gallon jugs, but use it in the regular 35oz. bottle because it foams it as it comes out. This is what works for me:
1. Do one wheel at a time.
2. Rinse the wheel with a blast of water from the hose or just distilled water from a spray bottle or pump type garden sprayer.
3. Spritz on some Wheel Cleaner. Let it set at least 30 seconds, then agitate with something. A 1 or 2 inch paintbrush works, as does the 3 finger mitt Griots sells. A regular sponge works-- cut it in half and throw it away when finished with all four wheels.
4. Rinse off with water from hose or pump sprayer.
5. Optional extra step: Spritz some ONR, Eco Touch or Quik Detailer.
6. Dry with MF towel.
Do this regularly and it's a lot easier. Switch to Akebono brake pads and it it becomes easier still.


I have only used their Heavy Duty version and really love it. It is the one touted has having the ability to dissolve some iron contaminants. The way I use it is modified from their instructions. As instructed I let it dwell for a couple of minutes and then I agitate. I agitate each wheel and once I have done all four I rinse them of. Works like a charm.

I have also found that Armor-All Wheel Protectant protect a bit against break dust but it can leave a whiteish residue in some spots as it dries.

Carboy7
09-22-2011, 05:38 PM
I have only used their Heavy Duty version and really love it. It is the one touted has having the ability to dissolve some iron contaminants. The way I use it is modified from their instructions. As instructed I let it dwell for a couple of minutes and then I agitate. I agitate each wheel and once I have done all four I rinse them of. Works like a charm.

I have also found that Armor-All Wheel Protectant protect a bit against break dust but it can leave a whiteish residue in some spots as it dries.
You could always apply wheel wax instead of the Armor-All