Swirled up paint

I don’t need to tell you, that there is no shortage of cars in any color with pretty beat up paint. Just about anywhere you look, you can see imperfections on nearly every car. The very good news is that with the technology, and product selection that is available today from the detailing industry, you can create a 100% swirl free finish yourself. This E Class Mercedes Benz was delivered in this condition to a happy new owner. Think twice about trusting detailers who work at dealerships Just a few years ago, you HAD to have a professional detailer do the work for you, which was many times big bucks. For a small investment, typically the price of a normal detail, you can own all the necessary products to not only detail your car, but you can actually remove most and in some cases, all imperfection! Imagine, that. No, you don’t need to be a  handy man either to do it. It is that easy. We, at our 3D free detailing classes teach men and women who have never held a polisher in just a few minutes to polish. This guy in the white shirt was terrified, but we talked him into giving it a try. By the time he finished the area, he was polishing, not only did he create a swirl free finish, he felt right at home. While many of them are pretty nervous at first, a short demonstration before hand, gives them a very good understanding of the process. It is almost like watching someone on an airplane for the first time. They are pretty nervous as the plain is taking off, until the plane is in the air. You can see how relieved they are. Kinda like that. Because you are not using a rotary buffer, maneuvering the DUAL ACTION polisher is pretty easy. With your machines, you just need to get several pads: cutting pads, polishing pads, and finishing pads. A compound, and a polish. You also want to get a good wax. That is pretty much it. Take a free detailing class in your area if you have to , but you can also learn the very basics just by watching some you tube videos. Work in small sections. Take your time, auto clear is pretty hard, it is not going to be a quick job. Obviously there are some differences in hardness, so your car may take longer to correct but with the right product and pad combination, so will see excellent progress in a very short time. The condition of your car’s paint will also determent  how long the correction will take. Hopefully, your paint is in good shape and doesn’t have swirls or scratches. If you happen to notice a scratch that looks deep,...

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Free Training Seminar – Tijuana, Mexico 10/1

Take a vacation down south of the border for our training seminar in Tijuana, Mexico on Monday, October 1st. The Detail Store / Auto Lavados La Ocho S.A. de C.V. Store Hours: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm Monday – SaturdayAddress: Blvd. Simon Bolivar # 18604 La Presa, Tijuana ALO-900125-2F2 Baja California, Mexico Phone: Fax: 644-625-9773 688-3049 Email:...

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How often should you detail your car?

The simple answer is: As often as your car needs it. There are no set rules about that. The “norm” you will see on online retail sites is that you want to detail your car once or twice a year. Well, maybe if you have a garage queen. If you drive your car daily, or at least 5 days a week, you really want to pay close attention to the amount of contamination your paint is holding on to. Also, when ever you wash your car – Is the paint beading/sheeting as you hose it down or does the water just sit on the paint? Here is a fantastic example of what it is that you should be looking for. Uniform beads   So how do you accomplish this beading? First, you wax your car often. But if you are new to detailing, you should start fresh. That means – you wash your car real well, with a quality car soap like 3D’s Pink Car Soap or what ever product you like. Once the car is clean, your 2nd step should be a clay bar or clay towel to decontaminate the paint. This step will remove all embedded contamination and make the paint feel as smooth as glass. Btw, clay your windows as well to complete this step. I prefer the NANO PREP claying towels. At this point the paint is stripped of all dirt, so you can now polish the paint. You always polish after claying for several reasons. 1 – clay is abrasive so it may mar your paint a bit. Not to worry, this is very superficial, and you will be able to clean up the paint easy. 2 – polishing will give you most of the gloss and shine. Not wax. How aggressive you need to polish will depend on the condition of your car”s paint. That will be up to you. HD POLISH is a world class product. After polishing your car, you should have a great looking finish. All you have to do now is  protect, that gloss with a wax or sealant. My go to product is HD POXY   Your car should look beautiful at the end of a long detailing session. I always tell my customers that they should wash their car at least once a week, and wax as often as possible. These are the 2 most important maintenance steps to keep your paint in tip top shape. If, somehow you have the time to put this much energy into your car, the chances of your car needing a detail often is pretty slim, but it will look amazing. However, if you are too busy to give your car a wash or wash...

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The Importance Of Micro Fiber Towels

Such an important part of keeping your paint in tip top shape. They are available in pretty much every store. Unfortunately not all Micro Fiber Towels are the same. It is very important to be aware about the quality of your towels. Especially the once that you use on the paint. While I haven’t tried every towel out there, I feel comfortable in saying, that if you purchase from an online vendor, you will get quality towels. However if you go to your local store to pick some up, you have to be very careful. If you must, by all means get some towels, but be very careful wiping your paint with them. You do not want to scratch the paint.As always, the marring will be more noticeable on darker color cars, but you can mess up the paint just as easy, even if the paint is white. Imperfections, such as swirls, scratches happen only when you physically  touch the paint. That is, when you wash your car, when you dry your car and in between washes, like when you try to wipe dust off of the surface. Wiping off wax or sealants is another time where you are in contact with the paint. It is crucial that you take great care of your paint otherwise you will end up with a paint that will not look up to par. I know of many cases, where someone would spend a whole weekend detailing their car only to realize that after polishing the paint for hours, they marred it, because the towels came from the local store and ended up inducing light swirling. Don’t make the same mistake, order quality detailing towels. I don’t mean to suggest to spend a fortune on detailing towels, but there is a nice medium between $16.00 for 30 some yellow towels vs $10.00 a towel. You want to make sure that the towels are 70%/30% and not 80%/20%. The latter is fine for interior work or for your wheels, windows, door jambs etc.. But try not to use them on painted surfaces. They “can” scratch. Once you used the towels, you need to make sure to care for them the proper way. Always wash your Micro Fiber Towels that are for paint only, separately. Never contaminate them with dirty towels that you use on your interior or on your engine, wheels etc… Until very recently, I used regular laundry detergents without any fabric softener. They worked fine, but  looking back now, I don’t think that they did a very good job. I mean they looked clean but somehow, the towels weren’t completely free of those polishes and waxes. However, now that I use a dedicated cleaner for...

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Scratches and swirls

Just today, I was reading on a detailing forum 3D is sponsoring, where someone said, that he was wiping bird droppings off of his car with a micro fiber towel and plain water. That is just asking for trouble (swirls and maybe even scratches) in case you didn’t know.Often times, I also read and hear, so many rinsing their cars down and wiping them dry if the car is not too dirty.  With nothing but water. I am trying so hard to understand these people. Are we really this uneducated about maintaining and keeping the paint in at least in good enough shape? Do we not know how fragile the top layer of your paint is? Well, it seems that a large percentage of the population is unaware. Maybe even clueless. When it comes to cleaning your car’s painted surfaces, it is crucial that you use some for of lubrication. Water is not enough, otherwise there would be no need for car soap. A detailer spray, – QD or Quick Detailer is a must to have around your garage and in your car’s trunk. Along with several clean Micro Fiber towels. Just in case you want to get that fingerprint off the trunk or fender. A QD will not only give you the much needed lubricity that water doesn’t, it will also do it without scratching the surface due to those cleaning agents in the product. I just looked this up – for $15.99, you can get a gallon of QD Swirl Free Finish Thomas...

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