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F10 / F11 (2011 - Current)
The new chapter in the highly successful story of the BMW 5 Series Sedan (F10) and wagon (F11)

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  #1  
Old 11-17-2012, 05:00 AM
johnfinger johnfinger is offline
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Clay Bar

How often should you do a clay treatment on your exterior...is it possible to overdo it? I took delivery of my 2013 535 M-Sport 8 weeks ago and with us heading into winter thought about claying and waxing the car, but not sure if it may damage the relatively "new" paint...?
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  #2  
Old 11-17-2012, 05:39 AM
snj1013 snj1013 is offline
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Clay as often as you like. Likely only needed before each wax/polish.
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  #3  
Old 11-17-2012, 07:17 AM
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BigDeep1 BigDeep1 is offline
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BigHungry seems to have a lot of cool detailing products. Hopefully he can chime in with some recommendations and advice.
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  #4  
Old 11-17-2012, 10:19 AM
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Needsdecaf Needsdecaf is offline
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Whenever the car needs it. You can tell by feeling the paint. I don't do it more than 3x to 4x per year, honestly.
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Old 11-17-2012, 10:20 AM
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Needsdecaf Needsdecaf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnfinger View Post
How often should you do a clay treatment on your exterior...is it possible to overdo it? I took delivery of my 2013 535 M-Sport 8 weeks ago and with us heading into winter thought about claying and waxing the car, but not sure if it may damage the relatively "new" paint...?

There is no "new" paint anymore.

Going into winter, I would definitely clay and then get a good sealant like Zaino's or another brand, there are many good ones. Keep the crap from damaging your clear coat through the winter.
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Heaven is where the police are British, the cooks are French, the cars are German, the lovers are Italian and it is all organised by the Swiss.

Hell is where the police are German, the cooks are English, the cars are French, the lovers are Swiss, and it is all organised by the Italians
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  #6  
Old 11-17-2012, 02:44 PM
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bighungry618 bighungry618 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigDeep1 View Post
BigHungry seems to have a lot of cool detailing products. Hopefully he can chime in with some recommendations and advice.


Thanks Mr. Deep,

But just to clarify, I do not own or work for Detailed Image. It is an east coast based and my favorite detailing supply company's website that I get my personal and professional supplies from.
I'm only a detailer, but boy do I wish I owned that company.
That being said, I'd be happy to help the OP with his clay bar question.

JohnFinger,

Claying is important because it removes imbedded contaminants in your clear-coat. Using the clay before the polishing step is especially important. It prevents the damage that could happen (will happen) by grinding in those contaminants and marring/swirling your paint as you polish your car; either by hand or machine.

The frequency in which you should clay your car varies with how well you care for your car overall, generally one needs only to clay twice a year; spring and fall. As I said, it could be more for example; if you park outside, commute long distances, or if you don't wash your car frequently.

If and when you clay, like others have suggested, it is highly recommended that you polish and or wax/seal your paint. The options for various products are limitless and most of them should suffice for personal car care needs. Before winter I would definitely use a sealant like Black Fire Wet Diamond, or Menzerna Powerlock. There are many comparable products, but I prefer those. Click my signature if you wish, there is great information available for free on DI.

PM me for specific how to questions if you'd like and congrats on your new M-sport
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Last edited by bighungry618; 11-19-2012 at 05:54 AM.
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  #7  
Old 11-17-2012, 03:00 PM
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BigDeep1 BigDeep1 is offline
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Thank you for your expertise Mr Hungry.

May I ask if one clay bar is superior to another? Is a Mother's clay bar from Wal-Mart the same as a clay bar from Zaino?

Also, what is your take on Zaino products? I see many amateurs rave about it. Sad to say, but I have not had time to wax a vehicle in years .

I have been out of the loop and need to get some TLC on my vehicles. I guess that is why my 2 most recent vehicles are silver .
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  #8  
Old 11-17-2012, 04:10 PM
FastMarkA FastMarkA is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigDeep1 View Post
May I ask if one clay bar is superior to another? Is a Mother's clay bar from Wal-Mart the same as a clay bar from Zaino?

Also, what is your take on Zaino products? I see many amateurs rave about it. Sad to say, but I have not had time to wax a vehicle in years .
You can clay on a weekly basis if you want. But it's not necessary at that interval.

I do feel there is a difference in quality among clay bars. My favorite so far is Adam's Clay Bar.

The key to claying is making sure you have enough "lube" on the metal when you run the clay over it. This can be a quick detail, or highly concentrated soapy water. If there is no liquid on the paint in front of the bar, DO NOT rub the clay over it. You can easily damage your paint.

I think Zaino makes a very easy-to-apply, long-lasting product. It's not my favorite, but for 95% of the folks out there, it certainly does a good job.

Check out the detailing forum for better information.
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  #9  
Old 11-17-2012, 05:40 PM
Munich77 Munich77 is offline
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I usually clay my cars twice a year - before applying the winter coat and summer coat of wax.
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  #10  
Old 11-17-2012, 11:25 PM
schnell525 schnell525 is offline
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claying is a vitally important part of the detailing process.

i'm not going to get a chance to do a full detail before winter. i doubt it it will hurt the car.

however if you do clay, you should do a polish with a good company, IMO like Menzerna the topcoat with a sealant.

more i look at it, doing a mega detail before winter is a bit of a waste of time. i doubt that your paint will get murdered over one winter.

i wash myself, or use a touchless. touchless is mostly in the bad weather months.

however, if you are going to do a clay, you should have a decently high end R.O. or orbital polisher and know how to use it, plus a polish that can take out the problems.

Phil at detailer's domain is extremely helpful. I have a Flex waiting to be used, but it's one heavy SOB. I also have a PC R.O. which might be helpful to do some spot areas.

My area gets a lot of snow and ice--which results in a lot of salt products and cinders being deployed. So doing a mega fall detail does to protect it--I really don't know.

Einszett is known as one of the mfg's that makes a product that can stand up to heavy salt, but even then I don't know if it's perfect.

All i know is I like the interior clean, leather treated, and clean interior windows. I plan on a mega exterior detail in the spring.

Whatever you do, have fun while doing it! That's part of the fun of having one of these cars.
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  #11  
Old 11-18-2012, 08:31 PM
Andrew OD Andrew OD is offline
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Very good info on the clay bar care
Thanks
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