My wife found some car cleaning tips on cartalk.com and I found them to be very valuable. To make my life easier, I have summarized the items into a list:
- wash your car in a shaded area. if it is hot, you might get soap spots from drying to fast
- pre-soak the car to remove heavy stuff
- use mild liquid soap and 2 mitts, one for car, one for tires
- wash one section at a time. start with the roof and work your way down
- always hose your mitt or sponge off before puting it in the wash bucket to re-soap
- rinse throughly
- be careful when using spray on cleaners, as it might harm the surfaces of unintented application
- no pricy automotive cleaners, use mild liquid soap that is well diluted.
- dry car immediatly. chamois works. so does ‘the absorber’
- wax with ‘black magic wax’, meguirs polish, and finish with meguiars quick detailer
- refer to owners manual for types of cleaning solutions to use
- test solutions on small, low visible areas first
- try blowing out debre from hard to reach places, on low power
- use a fine paint brush and toothbrush for hard to reach places (eg around the dashboard or door panels) (leave them in your glove compartment for easy reach)
- use sturdy brush and vacuum to remove debris from carpets
- use gum and wax removers to get the offending item off the surface. other options are to freeze the object and shatter it off
- dont use armor all, just a cloth with some water will do great. to remove grime, use a all purpose cleaner diluted with water.
- use Plexus for cleaning those plastic parts
- the dirtiest spots on a car are: between your legs, steering wheel, seat belts, drivers door panel, shifting knob. spend a few more minutes cleaning these areas.
- when cleaning seat belts, use only diluted mild laundry soap. this will protect the fabric
- clean windows inside and out with paper towels. dry with 100% cotton towel.
- to remove smells, use a 20:1 water-to-vinegar mixture. if it does not work, keep increasing the ratio until success. (dont forget to test first on a small area)