In a detailing world full of foam lances, cannons and other tools that pair with a pressure washer, we often overlook other great options. If you do not have a pressure washer or are simply looking for a quick and easy way to add foam to your vehicle during the wash process, I highly recommend the Gilmour Foamaster II Foam Gun. Let me preface this by saying the foam output does not compete with a pressure washer and foam cannon combo, but it is more than enough to help break down and loosen contamination using only a garden hose.
Let’s get started!
This is everything that comes with the Foamaster, with the Siphon Tube and Foam Wand packaged within the bottle. To assemble,
- Screw off the top and pull out the Foam Wand, Siphon Tube, and Deflector.
- Attach the Siphon Tube to the bottom of the orange Mixing Head.
- Attach the Foam Wand to the front of the Mixing Head.
- Fill your bottle with a few ounces of shampoo and the rest with water.
- Screw your garden hose to the bottom of the Pistol Grip.
- Using the quick connect, attach the Pistol Grip to the Mixing Head.
Once finished, your unit will look like this:
Settings & Dilution
When washing, most products call for 1-2 ounces of shampoo per gallon of water. I however highly recommend playing around with dilution ratios and finding what works best for you. If you are using an All-Purpose Cleaner following dilution ratios is key to safe and effective use, but with shampoos you do have more leeway to play around with adding a few extra ounces for some added lubricity and washing power. Even with that said, test out some different shampoos as well. Some will foam up more than others, while some will leave behind protection. Find what works best for your setup and needs.
I personally work with 2-4 ounces of shampoo and the rest of the bottle is filled with water.
After that is all set, you have various settings to choose from. Each setting from A, B, C, D, and E will allow your unit to push more (or less) water through the bottle to produce more (or less) foam during the wash process. Setting E will produce the most foam and it is the setting I find myself working with the most.
When I am not using setting E I am turning the setting to 0 as this setting will push only water through the Foam Wand, skipping what is in the tank.
I will start off my wash with setting 0, or by detaching the Pistol Grip from the Mixing Head and rinsing down the entire vehicle. This will knock off any loose dirt and grime, leaving less contamination behind for the shampoo to help break down.
Once the vehicle is rinsed, swap to setting E or attach the Pistol Grip back to the Mixing Head. From here, start spraying!
You will notice that the foam produced is not a thick snow foam that we see with a pressure washer setup, but it is still a nice layer. You are also able to spray down your vehicle quickly, which saves you valuable time and effort during the wash process. Please also note that the shampoo being used is not a high foaming option, so using this unit on setting E with a high foamer will increase foam output as well.
Work section by section (top to bottom) with your favorite wash media and make sure you have a Bucket and Grit Guard on hand to clean off the wash media and avoid reintroducing contamination back onto the paint.
For me, the Foamaster II is an amazing tool, but with some limitations. You are not going to see a super thick foam that sticks to the paint for a long time, but it can be set up in less time and you will not need to invest in a pressure washer to use it. It is great for someone who only has a garden hose at their house, or even someone with a pressure washer that is simply looking for something to use for a quick wash process. The Gilmour Foamaster II Foam Gun is often overlooked in today’s detailing world, but it is an incredibly durable and useful tool that should be reached for more oftenly.