How to maximize the longevity of your car's finish

How to maximize the longevity of your car's finish

We understand the finish of your car is more than just a clean surface, it's a statement of your attention to detail. 

With Chemical Guys every car enthusiast can achieve a long lasting showroom shine. However, using the right techniques at the right time with the right car cleaning products, is crucial. 

Understanding your car's finish

The surface of your car is designed to protect and preserve your paintwork. A car's surface will typically compromise of a primer, a base paint, and a top clear coat that provides a glossy finish. The clear coat not only enhances the shine but also serves as the barrier to protect the paintwork from the elements. 

Your car's surface is constantly challenged by outside factors such as UV rays, rain, bird droppings and road grit or salt. These elements will affect your paintwork is different ways from colour fading through to cracks and permanent markings.

If left untreated these elements can embed themselves in the clear coat which makes them far more challenging to remove, and could cause long-term damage. 

The basics of maintaining your car's finish

Caring for the surface of your car begins with regular washing, and this isn't just to remove visible dirt, it's also about preserving the protective layer of your paintwork. 

Frequent washing with a high quality car shampoo will play an important role. Honeydew Snow Foam is a pH-neutral shampoo that's engineered to lift dirt from the surface without stripping away any waxes or sealants. 

Using a snow foam also removes the risk of scratches during washing as you remove most particles that you may drag across the surface. 

 

Read our article: What does snow foam actually do.

After a wash, the next critical step is drying your vehicle

Using the right drying towel, such as the Chemical Guys Woolly Mammoth Microfiber Dryer Towel, is essential. This towel is not just about its absorbency, but also about its non-abrasive nature.

The microfiber material gently glides over the car's surface, absorbing every drop of water without leaving any scratches or streaks.

The role of waxes and sealants

Adding protection to the clean surface is the next step to preserving the paint's condition. 

Car wax, particularly products like Butter Wet Wax, offers a blend of protection and aesthetics. Formulated from a blend of natural carnauba, polymers, and resins, Butter Wet Wax provides a deep, wet look to your car’s paint, enhancing its natural colour and gloss.

However, applying car wax is not just about achieving a great look, it also add a protective layer to shield the paintwork for contaminants such as UV rays and moisture. 

After washing and drying your car, apply a thin layer of the wax with a suitable applicator pad using circular motions to ensure even coverage. Allow the wax to haze slightly, then buff it off with a microfiber towel.

Sealants like JetSeal take protection a step further. Designed with advanced polymers, JetSeal provides a durable shield against the harshest environmental elements. 

After shaking the bottle well, apply a small amount onto a foam or microfiber applicator pad. Gently spread it over the car's exterior in a thin, even layer. Allow the sealant to bond with the surface for 20 minutes before buffing it off with a clean microfiber towel.

How to deal with contaminants that form on the surface

If you're regularly driving your car it's impossible to avoid the accumulation of contaminants, such as bugs, bird droppings and salt. If these are left untreated they can seriously damage the paintwork. To tackle these problems on the go with the need to for a full wash, you can use Bug & Tar Remover

Simply spray it directly onto the affected areas and allow it to soak for a few minutes. This dwell time lets it penetrate and loosen the grip of the contaminants. After soaking, gently wipe the area with a microfiber towel. For tougher spots, a soft detailing brush can be used to agitate the area gently, ensuring that the residue is completely removed. You could also choose to rinse the area with clean water afterwards.

 

Regular maintenance shouldn't be underestimated

Between full washes, it's important to keep your vehicle looking its best with quick touch-ups. Speed Wipe Quick Detailer is a great option for this. This quick detailer is not only easy to use but also very effective in removing dust, fingerprints, and smudges, to leave a streak-free shine. Its advanced formula enhances the existing wax or sealant layer, providing additional protection and gloss.

Simply spray a light mist of Speed Wipe onto the surface or onto a microfiber towel. Then, gently wipe the area in a single direction to lift and remove light dirt and debris. It acts swiftly, leaving a smooth, high-gloss finish without any residue.

 

Back to blog