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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all, Ive done some searches but only got some product specific results. My question is a stupid newbie one but it is what it is. Im starting to prep my garage and get some needed items for when my baby arrives.

My house/village has some serious hard water. Ive washed my previous cars with my water and if I let it sit for more than 2 seconds, you could tell the water was leaving white spots everywhere. My concern is that this is possibly harmful to the finish of the car. Which is not a chance I want to take with my new Challenger.

So the question is... what should I be buying to properly wash my car?
Am I out of luck when it comes to the hard water?

Thanks all and sorry if this has been discussed before.
 

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I think they make portable water softners for garden hose hook-ups, check Detailed image or auto geek or just google, I go to a touchless wash and only hand wash every 2 months. Mine is not a daily driver either.
 

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The water here is bad as well. Normally I wash one panel at a time and then wet the entire car over again as I wash. I continue this until my final rinse. When all panels are washed I then use the "flood" method for my final rinse. This entails removing the spray nozzle from the hose and adjusting the water flow to slow to medium. It must be done rapidly especially on a BLACK car! Start at the roof and let the flow of water sheet over the surface. Care must be taken to hold the hose end close enough to the surfaces to inhibit splashing or splattering, yet far enough to keep from contacting paint. Work your way along each panel top to bottom and the beading water will sheet away. There will be some beading remaining and that's when you spring into action and drop the hose and begin drying the remaining water droplets. The flood method works surprisingly well even for an old fat man! :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
The water here is bad as well. Normally I wash one panel at a time and then wet the entire car over again as I wash. I continue this until my final rinse. When all panels are washed I then use the "flood" method for my final rinse. This entails removing the spray nozzle from the hose and adjusting the water flow to slow to medium. It must be done rapidly especially on a BLACK car! Start at the roof and let the flow of water sheet over the surface. Care must be taken to hold the hose end close enough to the surfaces to inhibit splashing or splattering, yet far enough to keep from contacting paint. Work your way along each panel top to bottom and the beading water will sheet away. There will be some beading remaining and that's when you spring into action and drop the hose and begin drying the remaining water droplets. The flood method works surprisingly well even for an old fat man! :D
This method sounds DERANGED! LOL How long are you out there washing? I bet it looks bad ass though.


For some reason, I really like this leaf blower idea though! And the water filter hose products! I never even knew that existed!

Thanks for the tips ya'll! Keep em comin!
 

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My own personal record is 7 hours. Wash, wax and polish.

My wife at some point yelled out the back door, "Is the Diva clean yet?!"
 

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I have hard water too. Stopped washing my car. Use Meguiars quik detailer once a week.That was after using their spray wax to remove prior waterspots.
 

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What a great thread imerlin! I've been plagued with this problem for years and resorted to washing at the touch-less. Even that is substandard. I like the Matco filter idea best and the Hawaiian wax second. Great topic.

Where do you buy the Matco filter? Store locators are useless for me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
What a great thread imerlin! I've been plagued with this problem for years and resorted to washing at the touch-less. Even that is substandard. I like the Matco filter idea best and the Hawaiian wax second. Great topic.

Where do you buy the Matco filter? Store locators are useless for me.
Thanks dodgemahal! Love the name!

Im not sure about Matco but I did find this at Amazon...

I think Ill get a couple to try out. Amazon has a ton of car wash kits but there are so many products to pick from its hard to know what I will actually use.

If cared for correctly, I thought you weren't supposed to wax very often?
 

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This WORKs on my black car...

1. Wash as you normally would.
2. Just before drying, spray water over entire car again...bring car in the garage (if you have one)
3. Use a leaf blower and blow the water off...starting from the roof down.
4. Use quickwax

If you dont have a garage...pull it into the shade...OR:

If you have access to a "low traffic volume street" nearby (and radar detector) ....Dive VERY FAST and "air dry" your car. Then proceed to step 4.

P.S. I prefer gas blowers because they usually have more power. I scrapped my left front vapor chrome rim on a "touchless car wash" tire rail (wasn't paying attention). I won't be using that anymore. The low side wall tires are at risk of these car wash systems. Eventually I'll need a replacement rim. Bummer.
 

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Installed a Rainsoft water softener. This permanently fixed all my hard water issues inside and out. Works great on my black car.
 

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I was at Lowes a few years ago & they clearing out whole house filter system- basically you hook it up to your cold water supply in your basement/garage, I just used adapters & attached it to my hose, change the removable cartridge once a year, no issues. Best $25 I ever spent!

Wash the car via 2 bucket method, now I know this May sound crazy but after you wet the car real good, wash the car entirely without hosing off the the soap, the soap will help keep the water from spotting. I've tried this In Arizona winter (60 degree) to Arizona summer (100 & above) & it works. Rinse the car completely then do the water sheet method, have towel & detail spray ready & dry.
Spray detailer on wheels to keep them from spotting while drying car, once body is done dry the wheels.

I also found a compact shop vac that blows ($19) that I only use for this, helps with the nooks & crannies.

Wife's car is a dark slate metallic GC, never any spots using this method & Arizona water is THE WORST for car washing.






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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)

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I picked up a cheap (~$25) electric leaf blower at Home Depot, and I blow-dry the car after the last rinse with the garden hose, and then get after it with a microfiber shammy. Works pretty well.


How do you clean the wheels? I hope to be getting one soon with those wheels and am wondering how to clean them safely. Also do you use tire shine?


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Lots of good tips in here... I'll add my input as not only a person who has lived in areas with bad water and also a guy who has owned and operated a mobile detailing business where we had no option but to work in direct sunlight:

Work early in the day or late in the afternoon whenever possible. By washing when the sun is lower in the sky the intensity and heat will be far lower and thus reduce the speed at which water dries on the finish.

Use shade whenever possible... even invest in a pop up shelter to give you some extra shelter. You can usually find pop-up shelters at sporting good stores for $100-$200 and while they won't cover your entire car they'll give you something to work with. Obviously if you have a garage USE IT!

Use a pH neutral car wash that suspends mineral content. This becomes a part of your process and is a little counter intuitive, but if you use a soap like our Extreme Suds Balanced Wash, its recommended you DON'T rinse the car until the very end. The reason is that the soap will suspend the majority of the mineral content and dried soap is easier to remove and safer than dried water with contamination.

Use a drying agent - a quality detail spray misted over the wet surfaces of your car while you dry will work to keep those minerals in suspension as well and buy you extra time while you dry. It also leaves behind a nice gloss and lubricates your towel as you dry to minimize the risk of damage. I use our Polymer Detail Spray every time I dry.

Sheet rinsing or pool rinsing - take the nozzle off the end of the hose and use a low steady stream of water to push the standing water off your finish. Less water = less chances of spotting.

Forced air drying - use an electric leaf blower or forced air dryer to blow water off quickly so you only have to address small amounts at the end. Also great for getting water out of the mirrors and other places it hides.

Look into a CR Spotless system - this is a nice unit that uses multi-stage filtering to produce true SPOT FREE water. You can literally rinse with the water from this and let it dry and it will not spot. The only drawback is that the resin refills are expensive and need to be replaced regularly, especially when you have really bad water.

Hope that all helps.

Check out this tech article on our forums as well. Lots of helpful info on prevention and removal of water spots.

TECH TIP: Water Spots - Surf City Garage Library - Surf City Garage Forums

While you're there sign up for an account and you get a special 'weclome' discount code for your first order that includes free shipping with no minimum!
 
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