“I want to get a fully complete, total, mission impossible near flawless paint correction detail!” Great! How are you going to take care of your car afterward?
We need to have a serious talk about aftercare. Hold on to a post-it-note, or even cigarette wrapper. Now realize you may likely have even less paint that I can safely polish than the thickness of a post-it note or cigarette wrapper.
This article is not meant to terrify you and to not necessarily at all to discourage you from polishing or paying someone to polish your car. I just want you to not take the investment of time and resources of paint correction and most importantly the after care process seriously. The post detailing part of cosmetic car care (aftercare), washing your car carefully, and somewhat frequently is the point of emphasis here. Speaking on behalf of many professional detailers, we feel devastated spending several hours to days with your car to find the same defects likely caused by the same bad habits of the owner.
If this is your first black car, you may be in for a shock. The turnaround from a day or two worth of polishing may amaze you. What also may surprise you is how easily your black car can return to that same poor condition. The good and the bad of what was not as visible on a white car will be obvious on a black car.
How long will my detailed car look like this? Forget the TV advertisement you just watched. There is nothing we can put on your car that will prevent the consequences of total neglect. Get that magic sealant, those magic coatings, and even super paint protection film thoughts out of your head. So how long will your car look like this? That is up to you. I recommend you asking yourself how did your car get this way with the swirls and scratches. If you can not give a good answer or a good solution, perhaps getting an enhancement (improve but not remove) level of service may be what’s right for you. But if you are open to change, there are better methods of washing a car.
Let’s say you use the traditional wash method. I have spoken with many people who brag that they do not use dawn, have the best wash mitt, the best soap, but do not have one of these (grit guard inserts) in their wash bucket. What I mean by traditional, washing a panel or two of your car, then dumping the mitt back into your bucket, and then taking that same mitt back onto your paint. If that is your process you should have a grit guard insert in your bucket. Even better you should have two; a rinse bucket with a grit guard and a wash bucket with a grit guard.
Sometimes whether using regular soap or a rinseless wash solution, I do not use a grit guard. But in those situations, I am not reintroducing a wash mitt or towel to a dirty bucket. I am using several towels or mitts.
Do you wash your towels after every use? Do you use high quality microfiber towels? This is an important part of maintenance. You may do all of the right things washing a car, but between car washing days grab a dry microfiber towel and vigorously rub any and every foreign substance off of your paint. Wash day is not the only time you have to be gentle with your car. I also do not consider spraying quick detailer with a couple of microfiber towels a safe wash alternative.
Please be honest with yourself. If you are thinking to yourself, these things will likely forever be foreign to me, I would reconsider signing off on that multi-stage paint correction plan.
If you are willing to learn better wash methods, there are links below that can help guide you: