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The Detail Department
Detailing tips, tricks to keep your bimmer in showroom condition.

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Old 04-15-2012, 06:40 PM
boostedX5SAV boostedX5SAV is offline
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Location: New York City
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 497
Mein Auto: 2012 X5 35i
Question Car Cleaning Equipment

Hi Folks,

I'm about to get access to my garage with an area and hose to clean my car. I currently live in a condo so I don't have didn't have access to a hose (have to using the automatic touchless car washes). I'm browsing the internet for some equipment to get to clean my car. I would like your input. Thanks. I'm just looking at Amazon now for the types of tools and equipment they sell, maybe you can recommend better ones on different sites.

I read that the two bucket method is the best and to use grit guards. So the first on my list is the grit guard.
Grit Guard Wash Bucket Insert

For washing, I've read that sheep/lamb wool is best for the top of the car and use a microfiber mitt for the areas where it's harder to remove dirt.
Mothers Genuine Lambswool Wash Mitt
Meguiar's Microfiber Wash Mitt

I need car shampoo. Don't have a particular shampoo in mind, but recommendations are welcome.

To dry the car, I was looking at a microfiber waffle weave towel:
Viking Microfiber Waffle Weave Drying Towel - 9 Square Feet
I also have a chamois towel that I can use for drying.

For wheels, I have a brush to clean the outside of the wheel. I was looking at these products to clean the lug nuts and inside of the wheel:
Griot's Garage 15597 Lug Nut Cleaning Brush
Griot's Garage 15736 Long Reach Wheel Brush - Set of 3

For interiors, I have a shop vac to vacuum the inside and to deal with dusts, I was looking into this:
Zwipes 770 Microfiber Folding Super Duster - Pack of 3

Since I have a SAV and I'm not 7' tall, I was looking at a wash stick to help clean the roof of the car:
HomeRight C800477 Auto Wash Stick
And to dry windows
Carrand 9267 Scrub-N Squeegee Professional Series 8" Plastic Head with 20" Plastic Handle
Can the squeegee also be used to dry the car without any damage? I've seen some "water blades" on Amazon that people say is good for drying cars. Again, because of the SAV, I'd like something with a long handle so I can clean the roof without using a chair or ladder. On another note, do you use a squeegee to dry your car other than your windows? How do you dry your windows if you don't use a squeegee?

I was also looking into a pressure wand and a foam spray gun that attaches to the hose.
Solo 4900170N 28-Inch Universal Sprayer Wand And Shut-off Valve
Bon-Aire Original Ultimate Aluminum Hose Nozzle
Gilmour 95QGFMR Foamaster II Cleaning Sprayer

So far, these are the products I've looked into buying. Please let me know if these are good products to use or if you recommend something else, and if there is anything else that is useful to clean my car, please do share.

Thanks a bunch!

Last edited by boostedX5SAV; 04-16-2012 at 05:04 AM.
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:21 PM
Johnz3mc Johnz3mc is offline
C code: 405/3
Location: Sidney, B.C.
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 828
Mein Auto: 99 Z3 M Coupe
Soap: Griot's is one of the best you can get. Duragloss 901 etc is a close second.

For the wheel brushes, those'll probably be fine but I'd go with the other Griot's product - the set of two that look like the Wheel Woolie brushes.

Don't use a squeegee on the painted areas. One bit of grit and you'll rue the day. Ditto the chamois.

And of course, a ton of good microfiber towels. The thinner Costco microfibers are good for wheels, door jambs and glass.

I don't know about the Zwipes. They might be fine but monitor their use for swirls and use a light touch when using them, sort of like how you'd use a California Duster properly. A light touch.

The rest of your choices look good.
-John C.
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Old 04-16-2012, 11:05 AM
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veteran011 veteran011 is offline
WARNING: Has Dumb Ideas
Location: Westchester Co, NY
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 612
Mein Auto: 97 328is
you also may want to look into a swirl removing compound and a random-orbit or dual-action buffer to get rid of the swirls that using the automated carwashes probably caused.
dab of oppo anyone?

Project List:
Replace coolant temp sensor
Replace starter
Brake and Power Steering Fluid Flush
Front Control Arms, Bushings, and Tie Rods
Replace Passenger Lock Actuator
Reglue Peeling Hedliner
Swirl removal
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Old 04-16-2012, 01:58 PM
boostedX5SAV boostedX5SAV is offline
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Mein Auto: 2012 X5 35i
Thanks for the tips.

Amazon has a PC for sale right now for $90 Porter-Cable 7424XP 6-Inch Variable-Speed Polisher I was looking into getting it too.

I heard that Sonax wheel cleaner is good. Will it remove brake dust from the inside of rims without me scrubbing hard.

Also, I was watching a youtube video of car washing and this guy was using something like this Bon-Aire Original Ultimate Aluminum Hose Nozzle Seems better than those spray wands. Any comments on this product?
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Old 04-16-2012, 02:34 PM
Johnz3mc Johnz3mc is offline
C code: 405/3
Location: Sidney, B.C.
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 828
Mein Auto: 99 Z3 M Coupe
Rather than the 7424, I'd go with the similar but more powerful Griot's version. Longer cord and lifetime warranty and more power. They go on sale once in a while too. If I was just starting out now, I'd jump on the Griot's polisher for sure. I currently have the PC 7336 which is the 7424 with the 6 inch counterweight. The XP is a bit more powerful than mine but the Griot's DA is even more powerful yet. More power means quicker correcting and DAs aren't exactly famous for correcting fast so get as powerful a unit as you can afford.

The Sonax has a good reputation but it's not going to easily remove the really nasty, sitting for months on the wheels embedded brake dust. Neither will the Griot's HD wheel cleaner which is very similar chemically to the Sonax product. Buy a bottle, try it and you'll see what I mean. (I've had some wheels so bad even Meg's Wheel Brightener couldn't fix them and if Megs WB couldn't clean them, The Sonax or the Griot's wouldn't stand a chance.)

The nozzle. Some guys like this style. It'll last a lifetime by the looks of it. Built in shut off valve too by the looks of it. Probably worth the 20 buck gamble. I currently use a brass shutoff valve and a common dial a stream type nozzle and I'm very comfortable how my setup works. But again, it's a personal thing. Either way, the shutoff valve feature is an absolute winner and whatever I used, it'd have to have one of those somewhere, either as a discreet unit or a built in one like on that nozzle.
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Old 08-28-2012, 11:17 PM
ritumiky ritumiky is offline
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Location: india
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 2
Mein Auto: audi
I appreciated about all your information. Car cleaning equipments are necessary to keep in your car. You suggest very attention to detail information about cleaning equipments which are really very useful and important for everyone also.

Last edited by ritumiky; 09-03-2012 at 02:18 AM.
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Old 09-22-2012, 06:58 PM
Revelation19 Revelation19 is offline
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Location: San Jose, CA
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Posts: 133
Mein Auto: BMW 528i
You're gonna love and cherish the Gilmour Foam Gun, especially when washing an SUV.

Get yourself some quality high-sudsing shampoo for the foam gun like Chemical Guys Maxi Suds II

My wife's SUV's is tall, so I used to use a small step ladder in order to access the roof properly. But, that got old really fast, as reaching and stretching hurt my ankles after a while. So, I scored a portable work platform, like the Werner AP-20 which is sold at Lowes. A major productivity enhancement tool indeed. Helps me reach the the center of the windshield too.

Last edited by Revelation19; 09-22-2012 at 07:00 PM.
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Old 09-23-2012, 01:03 PM
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BMWFatherFigure BMWFatherFigure is offline
Old School
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Join Date: Aug 2012
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There are good books on detailing - I reference mine all the time.
Good - Fast - Cheap: Pick any two.
3 x E32 735iL (Alpine White, Glacier Blue & Kashmir Beige); 2 X E38 735iL (Oxford Green & Alpine White); E53 X5 4.4i (Pearl Beige); R50 Cooper; R55 Cooper Clubman (Both Pure Silver).
E38 Parts Car
E21 318i; E23 735i; E30 318i; E32 735iL; E34 535i; E38 730iL; E53 4.4i
I've just changed my wiper blades and now my reverse lights don't work. Should I change my fuel pump relay?
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