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

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  #1  
Old 03-09-2014, 11:30 AM
Xiaoxi Xiaoxi is offline
Blasts Bach while speedin
Location: Gaithersburg, MD
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 67
Mein Auto: 2013 F30 328i
Newbie car wash question

*fingers crossed*

I think the snow season is finally over.

*knock on wood*

My 3 months old 2013 328i has been repeatedly cleaned at the dealership (because I kept on having to take it back for service lol) but it just snowed again earlier this week. Some salt marks all over the car again.

Feels like that should stop for good this year, so I'm thinking about giving the car a proper clean (including underside). But I read that you have to be very careful with the cleaning material used because the wrong kind could end up damaging the coating of the car?

This is a full service near me. Do any of these packages look like they would be good for a cleaning?

http://touchlesscarwash.net/services/
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  #2  
Old 03-09-2014, 12:52 PM
Johnz3mc Johnz3mc is offline
C code: 405/3
Location: Sidney, B.C.
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 665
Mein Auto: 99 Z3 M Coupe
If I had a nice new 328i, I'd stay away from those guys like the plague.
I'm thinking they probably use the same rags on all the cars and have been using those rags for days and days. They probably drop the rags on the ground now and then then just give them a good shake and continue using them. Each rag becomes a scratch machine and that's why I'd never take my car to a place like that. Their objectives are different than yours. They focus on the money for the least amount of time. You care about the quality of your paint/clearcoat. You and they don't have mutual goals.

Why not just spend an hour and do it yourself. Two buckets, a gentle car shampoo like Meguiar's Gold Class mixed to the proper ration won't harm your clearcoat at all. The opposite. it'll clean it without damage because it's formulated to do exactly that. Not so with alternative soaps like Dawn. Dawn is great for grease on plates but it tends to strip waxes off cars.

A good lambs wool mitt or a microfiber mitt or microfiber pad won't harm your surface either. No old t-shirts. The lambs wool mitt or microfiber product will wick the dirt away from the surface.

The underside - put a sprinkler on the driveway and drive over it. Adjust it now and then and you'll remove all salt and corrosive bits.
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  #3  
Old 03-09-2014, 11:15 PM
Xiaoxi Xiaoxi is offline
Blasts Bach while speedin
Location: Gaithersburg, MD
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 67
Mein Auto: 2013 F30 328i
Thanks for the recommendation.

Not sure if it matters but the car had a layer of protective coating put on when it was purchased at the dealership. Would it be ok to run it through a touchless wash?
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  #4  
Old 03-10-2014, 12:43 AM
Johnz3mc Johnz3mc is offline
C code: 405/3
Location: Sidney, B.C.
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 665
Mein Auto: 99 Z3 M Coupe
Maybe.
Keep in mind that the protective coating they put on is just another sealant that may last anywhere from 3 months to a year and those touchless washes have a few other negative things going for them. Things like a harsh liquid soap that'll knock off dirt with their pressure washes. That same soap will degrade your sealant coating over time and unless you have it reapplied continually at the dealership, it'll vanish. Their detergents are way harsher than proper ph formulated car shampoo.

I guess if you have to, it'd be ok occasionally.
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  #5  
Old 03-10-2014, 06:46 PM
Xiaoxi Xiaoxi is offline
Blasts Bach while speedin
Location: Gaithersburg, MD
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 67
Mein Auto: 2013 F30 328i
I've been asking a couple of different sources on this, and the 2-bucket system seems to be the absolute answer.

However, I went to the dealership today to get a wash purely as an assessment, now that I know what to look for in a good wash job.

Wow. Never again.

There are dirty water streaks everywhere. And I'm already starting to see a few micro-scratches. Although I can't determine if that was from this or something else (they've washed it 2 times before after service).

I'm already shopping for wash supplies and I've followed this guy's very helpful videos.



Things I'm planning on getting: 2 5 gallon buckets, grit guard for both, 2 Meguiar microfiber mitts, drying towel, and their Gold Class shampoo/condition as you suggested. I'm also getting the foam sprayer as he mentioned in the video.

The only problem is.....my house's garden faucet is broken. I can't use it

I think I'll just ask my friends if I can use their house to do this lol

Thanks for all your help!

Last edited by Xiaoxi; 03-10-2014 at 06:48 PM.
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  #6  
Old 03-11-2014, 12:24 PM
Johnz3mc Johnz3mc is offline
C code: 405/3
Location: Sidney, B.C.
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 665
Mein Auto: 99 Z3 M Coupe
Good plan.
You don't really need the grit guard in both buckets, only the rinse bucket. One in the wash bucket won't hurt but it won't do much either.
If you're buying your stuff online, I'd recommend you switch your shampoo choice. I only mentioned Gold Class as a local alternative, it's good but the Duragloss or Griot's shampoo are better, much better. The Duragloss and Griot's shampoos have great cleaning power, are very gentle and forgiving on your wax/sealant and offer super lubricity. Your mitt, with a light touch, will just glide over the surface and gliding is good.
The Dry Me Crazy drying towel has been getting very good reviews lately. Google it to learn more.

Any plumber friends? Changing a faucet isn't that hard a project really. Done it a million times. OK, ok, ok, truth be known, maybe once.
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  #7  
Old 03-11-2014, 07:27 PM
Xiaoxi Xiaoxi is offline
Blasts Bach while speedin
Location: Gaithersburg, MD
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 67
Mein Auto: 2013 F30 328i
I don't know what's going on with the faucet situation. It might be a problem with the pipe or something, I have no idea, but my parents said it will be expensive to fix...

But thanks for the product recommendations!!
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  #8  
Old 04-15-2014, 12:41 AM
Xiaoxi Xiaoxi is offline
Blasts Bach while speedin
Location: Gaithersburg, MD
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 67
Mein Auto: 2013 F30 328i
Hey, just thought I'd follow up on all this. I tried the waterless wash and think it should only be used sparingly on light applications. Doing the whole car is very time consuming and I'm paranoid that it's still introducing microscratches.

I found a great alternative to my broken garden plumbing... 2 Gallon hand pump pressure spray

It's just enough for a full rinse down, so with a few trips to the kitchen sink, it's a viable solution. With that, I can do the full 2-bucket wash with my first ever attempt at detailing.

I got the following:

Mother's Gold Car Wash
Meguiar M20 Polymer Sealant
Mothers Carnauba Wax
Griot Glass Sealant
Mothers Foaming Tire Cleaner

plus some hardware (2 buckets, grit guard, wheel brush, foam pad, Meguiar waffle weave drying towel). The drying towel works pretty well for sucking up water!

The detail process took 2 days. First day, 2 bucket wash and applied glass and body sealants. Second day, applied the carnauba wax. The whole thing probably took me 5-6 hours. Is that normal?

I'm very happy with the results. The car looks amazing and feels like the smoothest glass. Oh man.

After I got done, I pulled out of the driveway to take my dad somewhere, and my neighbor who drives a corvette watched as I passed by and he had a big grin on his face. I should have waved :sad:








yes, I forgot to "detail" the tires...will address that next time.
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  #9  
Old 04-15-2014, 06:42 PM
Johnz3mc Johnz3mc is offline
C code: 405/3
Location: Sidney, B.C.
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 665
Mein Auto: 99 Z3 M Coupe
Very nicely done, it looks like a million bucks. If I didn't know better, I'd have sworn you had a professional do it.
Again, good work on a job well done.
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  #10  
Old 04-16-2014, 03:22 PM
Xiaoxi Xiaoxi is offline
Blasts Bach while speedin
Location: Gaithersburg, MD
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 67
Mein Auto: 2013 F30 328i
Thanks, John! Glad you like it
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  #11  
Old 04-19-2014, 07:34 AM
ctiauto ctiauto is offline
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Location: Birmingham, AL
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 7
Mein Auto: 07 335i 6mt
That looks awesome bro! Beyond excellent for a first time detail!
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  #12  
Old 04-20-2014, 12:58 PM
Xiaoxi Xiaoxi is offline
Blasts Bach while speedin
Location: Gaithersburg, MD
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 67
Mein Auto: 2013 F30 328i
Thanks!
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  #13  
Old 04-22-2014, 10:24 AM
Revelation19 Revelation19 is offline
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Location: San Jose, CA
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 133
Mein Auto: BMW 528i
Nice work! Nobody, will take care of your car like you.
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