Why do I need to Clean my Paint?

The car factories offer a brilliant variety of paint colors and finishes. Although today's paints are far more beautiful than yesteryear, the paint thickness is far less. Compound this problem with increased environmental and road exposure and you have the basic question...

Why do I need to Clean my Paint?

Almost every vehicle manufacturer applies a clear coat to paints to achieve extra depth, color, and gloss. Cars with Clear-Coat-Paints require added “special" care. 

Clear Coated Paints are not magic and they are fragile:

You will damage your Clear-Coated-Paint when you use many of the solvent based car waxes on the market today. That’s because most commercially available products are made for the way cars used to be painted with a very thick (18-26 mil) color coat directly exposed to the atmosphere. This 'ONE-Stage' paint needed strong solvents and/or abrasives in the wax to remove oxidation, soiling and stains.

But most cars built after 1980 have a thin layer (5-7mil) of basic color paint, covered by an even thinner (1-1.5mil) "Clear- Coat" paint. This 'TWO-Stage' paint is easily damaged (burned) from the solvents then (scratched) from the abrasives in ordinary commercial waxes. After spending many hours waxing your car you may have "swirl marks" or "cob-webbing". These are nothing more than patterns of tiny scratches.

Some waxes claim to be made for clear coated paint-but they leave a film or residue when dry that is hard to rub off, and, rubbing harshly will add more scratches.

Unfortunately the world's finest waxes will not produce a brilliant shine or lasting protection if applied over dull, oxidized, soiled paint or old wax. Normal washing will not remove oxidized paint, minor swirl marks, old wax, insect tar, acid rain and catalytic converter residue (hydrochloric and sulfuric acids). Proper Pre-Wax Cleaning is necessary to remove these impregnated contaminants and provide a fresh, clean surface to which the wax can adhere.

The difficulty is how to clean the paint safely without using abrasive grit, harsh solvents or destructive Clay Bars. Typical cleaner wax products "scrub" the surface clean with petroleum solvents and compounds which can accelerate paint oxidation and aging Paint MUST be cleaned BEFORE it is waxed.

If you adhere to the basic following steps, you can almost guarantee success.

Step 1:

Before you wax your car ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS, wash it thoroughly. Any dirt or grit that is on your car's surface will scratch the paint that you are trying to protect. We recommend non-acidic, non-phosphoric, low or no sodium based liquid car washes that claim to do nothing but wash. Be on your guard against multifunction products, there is no replacement for common sense and lots of warm water.