If you had to maintain a perfect finish...which wash mitt and soap would you use?

Discussion in 'Pre Wash, Wash, Decon, Claying, Engine, Wheels, an' started by ampbmw, Apr 13, 2013.

  1. ampbmw

    ampbmw DB Forum Supporter

    So hypothetically, you do a 100% correction on your personal garage queen, and you gave it a regular bathe, what are the products you're using to go ALL OUT in preventing the infliction of new marring?

    I have personally not struggled with re inflicting any marks that a finishing polish and finishing pad couldn't remove, however after about a year of washing I start to see very fine sweeping holograms in bright sun. If you looked at the sun directly in the paint it wouldn't show any marring but when you walk down the side of the car you see a slight haze in the indirect sun. I know this is from using a microfiber wash mitt and microfiber clothe wipe downs. Generally I've been ok with this level of imperfection as its a daily driver (although garaged). But, i'm looking to improve in the future.

    I was thinking of switching to an ULTI-MIT or schmitt and only drying using my metro vac.
    What do you guys think?

    Mitt and shampoo recommendations??
  2. obsidian LGT

    obsidian LGT Birth of a Detailer

    Me personally, I'm a fan of: two bucket method with grit guards in both, car pro merino wool wash mitt (awesome), and a gentle shampoo such as Swissvax, AF Lather, or even Griot's garage. Most importantly, smooth, methodical back and forth wash technique, not continuously overlapping on the same area ( I've seen a lot of people who "scrub" their cars in an overlapping circular fashion, which does nothing but drag the dirt particulate over and over the same spot). And rinse the mitt often! Dunk it into the rinse bucket, shake it around to release the contaminates, then go to your soapy bucket to wash the next portion of the panel. Just my personal rumblings.
  3. 911Fanatic

    911Fanatic DB Pro Supporter

    IMHO, a proper pre rinse will do more to prevent swirls than any wash mitt or soap. You could be using the most expensive wash medium available but if there is grit between it and your paint, you are going to get swirls. Invest in a small pressure washer. I am currently using the Carpro Merino Wool mitt and quite like it. I also use the Megs MF Washmitt regularly. I sheet the water off before drying and blot off the rest or use my Metro Blaster. I use any one of 8 - 10 different soaps.
  4. HeavyD

    HeavyD DB Forum Supporter

    ^^^^^^^^ Nailked it. I like 1Z Perls and merino mitt myself.Pre rinse is key.
  5. fech

    fech Birth of a Detailer

    Merino mitt is a must. That's the softest mitt I've used. Ultima shampoo is nice but you can't go wrong with so many soaps that it's hard to narrow that.
  6. arov33

    arov33 Virgin Detailer

    It is possible for the merino mitt to scratch softer paints. Believe it or not the green knobby mitt from autozone does not scratch the super soft paint on my Infiniti. I was turned onto this mitt by AJ aka the junkman.
  7. nyrep1

    nyrep1 Obsessive Detailer

    yes the green peak mit from autozone and pepboys isthe only thing i have found that wont scratch a black gtr i maintain
  8. ModdedMach

    ModdedMach Birth of a Detailer

    +1 Getting the car as clean as possible before touching it is more important than how slick your soap is. AND IME, i think drying improperly is just as dangerous if done improperly.

    Personally tho, my super safe method would go something like this....
    Wheels washed first, wheel cleaner if needed, APC on tires, different brushes and rinse.
    Entire car pressure rinsed thoroughly
    Entire car foamed (currently using Honeydew from CG) then left to dwell for a few minutes
    Entire car pressure rinsed again
    Entire car foamed again, this foam is then washed off using the TBM, rinsed against grit gaurds after each panel, from top to bottom and front to back. Foam boosting lubricity and also helping avoid spotting.
    Entire car pressure rinsed very thoroughly, the the water sheeted using open hose.
    Blow dry entire car using electric blower.
    Final wipedown of UWW+ using 2 MF towels, 1 towel damp with UWW used to pick up sprayed UWW from panel using long nap side, then the second towel mostly dry using the shorter nap to buff UWW to safe, dry, streak free shine. Ive found this drying method to be super safe.

    Its possible for anything to scratch clear coat, but i HIGHLY doubt its the thousands of tiny wool fibers. Its also very hard to deduce that a particular swirl was caused, for sure, during the washing stage. On soft paint, i find the washing to be pretty easy, its the drying thats dangerous.

    I corrected a 2007 BMW 335i that was jet black. BMW Jet Black is SUPER soft. I had to dawn wash it (merino mitt) to remove polishing oils because IPA kept marring the paint. I was very careful while washing but i did induce a few very minor marks while drying, even being as careful as i could. Next time im gonna use brand new MF towels lol.
  9. Bunky

    Bunky DB Forum Supporter

    I see more blame on wash mitts than anything else <insert your favorite here> but also think the drying process has more risk than the wash process if one uses a towel. Plus not all mitts are identical (real wool has to vary since it is natural) so there could be performance differences just like microfiber towels.
  10. RZJZA80

    RZJZA80 Two Bucket System Washer

    Personally, I prefer ONR for a swirl free wash, maybe not 100%, but closer than any mitt/soap combo I've ever used. I also believe that drying is where the majority of the swirls will occur as there is not nearly as much lubrication on the paint as when you are washing it, regardless of the media.
  11. bigaudiofanatic

    bigaudiofanatic Any Rag Vehicle Washer

    The wash mit I would choose has to be adams as sad as i want to admit that. As for wash I just tried out Auto Finesse Lather and I really do like it. Soon I will be using a foam canon to help with keeping swirls at bay, I currently use a foam gun but am not that impressed.
  12. JoeyV

    JoeyV Welcome to Detailing

    Pressure rinse first is the best tip so far. for soap and wash media, I use Zymol Auto Wash and Elegance Sponges (very close to Zymol sponges) and air dry the car with my compressor.
  13. DaytonaJae

    DaytonaJae Birth of a Detailer

    After wheels, tires and exhaust tips, when the wash starts,

    Going ALL-OUT like the OP mentioned,

    1. Pressure rinse whole car with spot free water inline with water supply
    2. Foam the whole car with a sudsy car shampoo and let dwell for a few minutes
    3. Pressure rinse whole car again
    4. 1 Bucket (yes, ONE bucket only)
    5. Use a nice quality lubricating shampoo that you like
    6. 20 wash mitts (yes, twenty)
    7. Use each wash mitt for only ONE stroke on a panel then throw away
    8. Rinse car with spot free water
    9. Master Blaster dry the car
    10. Blotch dry with quality waffle weave drying towel
    11. Supplement with a high quality Quick Detailer Spray
    12. Wipe down car with a quality final wipedown microfiber
    13. Pull into garage
    14. inflate portable air bubble around car with battery backup and gas generator
  14. tdekany

    tdekany Wax on..Wax off

    Bunky - the drying process is not as dangerous as the washing step, since the dirt has been washed away already, so there should be nothing between the drying towel and the paint.

  15. Kilo6_one

    Kilo6_one DB Forum Supporter

    20 wash mitts. I get the concept, but what kind of mitt are you talking about? most mitts I see are about $7-$10.00 so $150.00-$200.00 in mitts? Really?

    please explain this step in depth.

    I understand protecting the finish, but this to me seems excessive.

    maybe if its a bugatti or the like, but even then.
  16. Kilo6_one

    Kilo6_one DB Forum Supporter

    I get this is a semi hypothetical senario.
  17. Swanicyouth

    Swanicyouth Two Bucket System Washer

    Wash mitts vary, I use several. I've never had an issue with a mitt scratching. I see videos of "detailers" washing cars sometimes and I cringe. They will wash a third of the car before cleaning their mitt. I guess that's why they can wash a car in 20 minutes and it takes me 2 hours.

    I always use a double sided mitt, so I can flip it halfway through a panel. I only wash one panel at a time on a snake like pattern before cleaning the mitt and getting fresh soap. I always use a second mitt for rocker panels and around wheel wells. Also, sometime I just rinse the mitt out with a hose before putting it in the rinse bucket if I think I may have picked up something dirty, always do this with mitt #2

    I agree with everyone that getting the car as clean as possible before touching it helps a lot. Foaming helps achieve that. Foaming with a pressure washer is a must IMO. A hose just won't cut it. If you doubt that, next time you go to wash your car, blast your a dirty wheel with a hose and examine it. Then repeat with a pressure washer on half the wheel. You will see how much more dirt is just removed by using a pressure washer over a hose. Much more than any specific product. Again, technique trumps product.

    However, one soap I find that's super slick is Luso Oro. After I mix my soap, I always feel it between my fingers and form a mental note. I have about 20 soaps, and none of them feel as slick as Lusso. Maybe that's why it's $70 a gallon.

    I think anyone struggling with wash induced swirls in a short period on "normal" paint needs to re-evaluate their process and slow down.

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