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Question on Washing Procedure with Deionized Water

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Hello.  You'll have to forgive me as I'm a bit new to the world of detailing.  Previously I'd always just gone to the corner car wash or done it myself with a bucket and a rag.  I simply didn't know any better.  However, with my new black Ford Raptor I really wanted to take good care of it and keep it looking nice.  I knew being a big supercrew truck, and black...it would be a challenge.  I also had a Modesta coating done to it at a reliable and trusted detail shop.  So I purchased a whole bunch of Adam's Products a couple months ago and have been slowly learning the proper ways to use them.

 

I've got the merino wash mitts, wash buckets, soap, detail spray, double-soft towels, great white drying towels, single soft towels...I even have the Master Blaster Revolution for drying...and a whole bunch of other Adam's stuff.  I think I have most of everything I might need, and probably a bunch of stuff I won't.

 

However, My water here is ridiculously hard.  One of my earlier attempts at washing my truck, even using the products above, was pretty disastrous.  My cloud cover dispersed and I ended up in the 2pm sun, with a black soapy truck.  By the time I was done it looked worse than when I started and was covered in really hard water spots.

 

I purchased a TDS meter and my water scored about as bad as it could get on the chart.  I recently purchased a "Simple Chuck" (CR Spotless) Deionzied water device and between that, my Adam's Foam Cannon, and my pressure washer, it has really solved 99.9% of my problem.

 

On to my question...

 

My question was how and what should my wash/dry "routine" be with the Simple Chuck and how to work the presence of the deionized water into my procedure? 

 

At its most basic...my procedure would be:

 

1) Pre-Rinse with Deionized water & Pressure Washer (I prefer to use Deionized water both for the rinse & the soap itself.)

2) Foam Cannon with Adam's Shampoo.  Then let it sit & soak for a few.

3) Rinse with deionized water

 

(At this point, if the truck wasn't that dirty then I can stop the 'washing' stage here and move on to drying.  Otherwise, I move on to a 2 bucket wash...)

 

4) Foam Cannon again with Adam's Shampoo.

5) 2 Bucket Wash (Though I'm moving to the one bucket method using a stack of Merino Mitts)

6) Rinse with Deizonized Water

 

Ok...at this point is where my questions come in and where I'm confused what I should do next...

 

Because its deionized water, should I just skip using the master blaster, great white drying towels, detail spray, or any of that and just let it dry?  I tried doing that for my last wash and it worked "pretty good" but I still had some water spots and some runs from the door handles, mirrors, etc.  Also, it certainly was very shiney but I noticed it didn't quite have that same level of "shine".

 

Or...should I go ahead and use the master blaster after rinsing and blow all the water off I can?

 

Or....is the correct procedure to spritz each panel with Adam's Detail spray and THEN use the Master Blaster?  Or should i use the Master Blaster and THEN detail spray?  Should I not be using detail spray at all?

 

If I should use detail spray...should I use it with a great white drying towel or with a double soft towel?

 

As you can see, I'm just not sure whether or not to use (or if I should use, where I should work in) the use of detail spray, the master blaster, or the use of any towels?  Or maybe with the deionized water I should be using any of that stuff at all?  I've read of folks saying that the detail spray attracts alot of dust so maybe I should be using detail spray at all?

 

What happens if you let the deionized water dry and you DO have some runs or water spots?  How do you clean those up?  Waterless Wash?

 

I'm also just confused because I'm not sure whether its best to use the foam canon & deionized water and try not to touch the truck at ALL?  Or whether I still DO need to touch the truck?

 

Hopefully those questions made sense.  Once again, I'm a newbie at this so please forgive if any of those were silly or stupid questions...or if I'm simply doing it wrong.  Thanks in advance!

 

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Welcome! There really is no right or wrong answer here, just depends on what method you prefer and what works for you.

 

I personally dont use detail spray to dry the car. Much less if I had a master blaster. The only time I use it when drying is if a panel has dried with some water spots on it. Then ill use a little detail spray to clean it right up. 

 

With deionized water you can still dry your car with a towel or compressed air. I would use the master blaster to help dry your car, that way you can minimize the towels that touch the paint. 

If you still have a few water spots, id just clean it up with detail spray and a double soft or single soft. 

 

Also, I dont find it necessary to do 2 washes with the foam cannon. The initial hose down should get most of the big dirt off from the car. If there are bird droppings or other stuff stuck to the pain, soak it with waterless wash and let it sit for about a minute or so. Thatll make it much easier to wipe off with the wash. 

 

Just remember there is not a single correct way of doing things.

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I have really hard water and have a CR Spotless unit too. I wash inside or later in the evening to avoid the sun. I rinse the truck of with the regular water, then use the foam cannon or gun. I wash then rinse with the regular water then rinse the car with the deionized water.

I dry using the Master Blaster. If I see any water spots after drying I use detail spray and a waterless wash towel.

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Since you are using DI water, and have a Master Blaster, there is no reason to towel dry.  The less you touch the paint, the longer it will stay swirl-free.

 

When you previously let the truck air-dry, and found some streaks and spots, it is because there was shampoo residue in the trim, mirrors, door handles, etc, and when these drips dried, the shampoo residue was left behind.  This situation is the only time that you would go back with a towel to clean off the streaks, and I would use Waterless Wash, instead of Detail Spray, since you have a ceramic coating.

 

Now, for wash procedure, what I end up doing with the exact same conditions (black truck, DI water, Master Blaster), entirely depends on the condition of the truck.  I do not use the same procedure each time, but actually have three different wash procedures, depending on how dirty the truck is:

 

LIGHT CLEANING (only light dust, no rain spots, no road spray, no bug guts)

1.  Pressure washer rinse using DI water.

2. Air-dry.

 

This is what I call the "Touchless Wash".  No touching the paint at all.  It is really quick, and gets it back to looking good.  Only issue is you might have some bugs or other stuff left that you did not notice, just leave these for the next normal wash.  It is best to air-dry inside the garage, since the water left on the surface tends to attract dust, which then gets left behind and can appear to be spots.

 

 

TYPICAL CLEANING (rain, dirt, bugs, road spray)

1.  Pressure washer pre-rinse with DI water.

2.  Foam Cannon and wash media, using DI water, and a rinse bucket for the wash media.

3.  Pressure washer final rinse using DI water.

4.  Forced-air drying with the Master Blaster, getting about 95% of the water off, and blowing out all the trim to prevent residue streaking from sneaky drips.

 

Make sure the pre-rinse is very thorough, as this is the most important step for safe washing, removing as much as much dirt as possible before actually touching the paint.  My pre-rinse actually takes me twice as long as the final rinse.  Only foam an area about equal to 3-4 panels at one time, do not foam the entire truck, or most of the foam ends up on the ground before you get around with your wash media.  Make sure to rinse out the wash media in the rinse bucket as needed between panels, which depends on how dirty the particular panel(s) were.

 

 

HEAVY CLEANING (winter washing, mudding, lots of crud or bugs)

1.  Pre-soak with Foam Cannon and DI water, using mixture of Car Wash Shampoo and Rinseless Wash.

2.  Very thorough pressure washer pre-rinse with DI water.

3.  Foam Cannon and wash media, using DI water, and a rinse bucket for the wash media.

5.  Pressure washer final rinse using DI water.

5.  Forced-air drying with the Master Blaster.

 

The pre-soak with the Foam Cannon helps to loosen the crud, and the Rinseless Wash aids in this.  Only use about 2oz of RW, since it works against the foaming of the shampoo.  Foam fewer panels at a time, and rinse the media more often.

 

This process is similar to what you listed above, but there is no reason to pre-rinse before the first foaming, since you are not going to be touching the paint with this first round of "pre-soak" foam.  The foam may also cling longer with the dirt left on the paint, allowing it more time to soften the stubborn crud.  It will also make your resin last longer.  If your water is high TDS, then you are going to go through the DI media faster, so being efficient with the DI water is advisable.

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I bought my CR system mainly for convenience. My water isn't terribly hard but the time savings has more then paid for the unit. IMO, the #1 reason to use DI water is to eliminate water spots. The #2 reason is to eliminate towel drying. This alone will help keep your paint swirl free.

 

Since my water isn't hard to start with I can afford to use my DI system for the entire wash. In fact, I rarely even unhook it from the spigot. Here's my routine:

Wheels & Tires with DI water (treat any tar on the rockers)

Pre-soak bugs on the vehicle with WW (wipe the heavy ones)

Pre-rinse entire vehicle with DI water

Foam Gun/Cannon (depending on my mood)

Use detailing brush on all the emblems & window cracks

2 Bucket Wash with DI water

Rinse with DI water

Wipe and dry door jambs (WW if terribly dirty)

Let air dry

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Thanks for the help & advice :)  And thanks for the kind welcome.  I have alot to learn.  Its one thing to purchase the products and tools, another to know how to use them properly and WHEN.

 

The step-by-step information, and under what conditions, and how the master blaster and the de-ionized water changes alot of the procedures and videos I'd previously been using as reference.  is what I was hoping to better understand.  Thank you so much.

 

Thank you especially to "TheWolf" for that write-up you posted.  That must have taken some time to write up and it was really thorough.  I'm actually going to print out your post and keep it on my detail cart.  That information was exactly what I was looking for...letter for letter. 

 

That really helps me to better understand the advantages of the Simple Chuck, my Modesta Coating, and the Master Blaster. 

 

Thanks everyone :)

 

Nickfire20,

 

Yes.  My Modesta Installer went over the Do's and Don'ts with me.  They also gave me some free sample products by Modesta.  One was a bottle of Modesta's Water Spot remover, another was Modesta's version of Detail Spray, and another was a Modesta product that sounded similar to the Adam's Ceramic Boost.  I haven't tried any of the Modesta products yet as I really liked the Adams' stuff and, unless absolutely necessary, didn't want to have to order products from a variety of makers.  The Adam's website and forums, for a newbie like me, have been a great resource and reference on "how to" and the folks at Adam's have always been VERY helpful in e-mails and such.  So I prefer to stick with Adam's if at all possible.  As far as product to stay away from, my installers biggest concern on care for the finish was just to avoid brush carwashes (or touchless carwashes with harsh chemicals) and to not get the attitude that the Modesta is some sort of wrap that will protect against everything.  He just wanted to let me know that even the Modesta finish itself will show scratches and swirls and that I should avoid screwing with it.  Products like waxes and sealants that have their own hydrophobic properties he said I should avoid.  Products like Detail Spray he said should be fine.

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That is a great question!  Have been considering getting a deionizer system, but was not sure it was worth the investment.  Am now going to start actively looking again!

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Thanks for the help & advice :)  And thanks for the kind welcome.  I have alot to learn.  Its one thing to purchase the products and tools, another to know how to use them properly and WHEN.

 

The step-by-step information, and under what conditions, and how the master blaster and the de-ionized water changes alot of the procedures and videos I'd previously been using as reference.  is what I was hoping to better understand.  Thank you so much.

 

Thank you especially to "TheWolf" for that write-up you posted.  That must have taken some time to write up and it was really thorough.  I'm actually going to print out your post and keep it on my detail cart.  That information was exactly what I was looking for...letter for letter. 

 

That really helps me to better understand the advantages of the Simple Chuck, my Modesta Coating, and the Master Blaster. 

 

Thanks everyone :)

 

Nickfire20,

 

Yes.  My Modesta Installer went over the Do's and Don'ts with me.  They also gave me some free sample products by Modesta.  One was a bottle of Modesta's Water Spot remover, another was Modesta's version of Detail Spray, and another was a Modesta product that sounded similar to the Adam's Ceramic Boost.  I haven't tried any of the Modesta products yet as I really liked the Adams' stuff and, unless absolutely necessary, didn't want to have to order products from a variety of makers.  The Adam's website and forums, for a newbie like me, have been a great resource and reference on "how to" and the folks at Adam's have always been VERY helpful in e-mails and such.  So I prefer to stick with Adam's if at all possible.  As far as product to stay away from, my installers biggest concern on care for the finish was just to avoid brush carwashes (or touchless carwashes with harsh chemicals) and to not get the attitude that the Modesta is some sort of wrap that will protect against everything.  He just wanted to let me know that even the Modesta finish itself will show scratches and swirls and that I should avoid screwing with it.  Products like waxes and sealants that have their own hydrophobic properties he said I should avoid.  Products like Detail Spray he said should be fine.

Very cool, glad to hear its just a normal coating and not something out of this world. I would definitely stick with Adam's in that case :)

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I was just referring back to this post today and, its probably a silly question, but what does the term "Wash Media" mean in the following sentence?  And what is meant by "Rinse Bucket"

 

 


2.  Foam Cannon and wash media, using DI water, and a rinse bucket for the wash media.

 

Is the above statement saying...

 

"Use the foam cannon and your carwash soap with DI water, then do a bucket (or 2 bucket) wash?"

 

I'm just confused by the term "Wash Media" and the term "Rinse bucket for the wash media".

 

Thanks!

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I was just referring back to this post today and, its probably a silly question, but what does the term "Wash Media" mean in the following sentence?  And what is meant by "Rinse Bucket"

 

 

 

Is the above statement saying...

 

"Use the foam cannon and your carwash soap with DI water, then do a bucket (or 2 bucket) wash?"

 

I'm just confused by the term "Wash Media" and the term "Rinse bucket for the wash media".

 

Thanks!

 

 

Wash media is either a Wash Pad, Wash Mitt, or the Wash Wedge.

 

No, you would not use the foam cannon and then follow with a two-bucket wash.  In a typical two-bucket wash you have a suds bucket and a rinse bucket.  For washing with a foam cannon, you would use the foam cannon instead of a suds bucket, since the foam cannon is used to put the shampoo on the vehicle.  The rinse bucket is used to rinse out the wash media between panels, or as needed depending on how dirty the vehicle is.

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Taking this a step further....

 

I am an advocate for hand washing every time. Foam cannon + wash media w/rinse bucket is the minimum I'll ever do if the vehicle has been driven. Reason being is the vehicle is simply cleaner and looks better. And if I'm taking the time to pull out the PW and foam cannon, you can bet your bottom dollar I'm going to make the most of it.

 

I understand for light-duty washes you aren't wanting to touch the paint. But there's only so much a pressure washer can do. To keep the paint looking its best, hand wash is where it's at. 

Edited by PHOKUS

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Wash media is either a Wash Pad, Wash Mitt, or the Wash Wedge.

 

No, you would not use the foam cannon and then follow with a two-bucket wash. In a typical two-bucket wash you have a suds bucket and a rinse bucket. For washing with a foam cannon, you would use the foam cannon instead of a suds bucket, since the foam cannon is used to put the shampoo on the vehicle. The rinse bucket is used to rinse out the wash media between panels, or as needed depending on how dirty the vehicle is.

Guess I've been doing it wrong. I always use 2 buckets (3 if you count the tire bucket) when I use the foam cannon. ;-) Edited by GXPaycheck

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Taking this a step further....

 

I am an advocate for hand washing every time. Foam cannon + wash media w/rinse bucket is the minimum I'll ever do if the vehicle has been driven. Reason being is the vehicle is simply cleaner and looks better. And if I'm taking the time to pull out the PW and foam cannon, you can bet your bottom dollar I'm going to make the most of it.

 

I understand for light-duty washes you aren't wanting to touch the paint. But there's only so much a pressure washer can do. To keep the paint looking its best, hand wash is where it's at. 

 

While I would agree that a full wash as you describe will make the vehicle look the cleanest, but the "touchless wash" has the advantage of NOT touching the paint, eliminating any chance for swirls, thereby keeping the paint in great condition for a longer time before needing a polish.

 

I feel the "touchless wash" it is an advantageous method for a light-duty wash when you are going to be driving the vehicle again right away.  After all, 95-98% clean is good enough to drive to work on Monday, when it is going to get dusty again anyway.

 

 

Guess I've been doing it wrong. I always use 2 buckets (3 if you count the tire bucket) when I use the foam cannon.

 

Nah brah, not wrong, just a little different. :D

 

Adding the suds bucket to the foam cannon wash routine is extra-safe, giving the wash media that much more rinsing and shampoo.

 

And yes, a separate bucket for the wheels is a must, every time.

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While I would agree that a full wash as you describe will make the vehicle look the cleanest, but the "touchless wash" has the advantage of NOT touching the paint, eliminating any chance for swirls, thereby keeping the paint in great condition for a longer time before needing a polish.

 

I feel the "touchless wash" it is an advantageous method for a light-duty wash when you are going to be driving the vehicle again right away.  After all, 95-98% clean is good enough to drive to work on Monday, when it is going to get dusty again anyway.

 

I completely understand. And on lighter-colored paint, you may not notice that 5% dirty. On black paint, it shows, unfortunately. 

 

I honestly wish I wasn't so OCD about it - I would love to do a touchless wash!  :) 

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Thanks :)

 

That helps immensely.  Probably a silly question but I had printed out this thread and stuffed it in my detail cart and was referring back to it when I thought to myself "What the hell is Wash Media?".  :P

 

I've had great success with the touch free method you mention, and under the conditions you mention them.  Even with a black truck.

 

I think I'm going to go ahead and continue using the suds bucket as well, along with my foam cannon though simply because even when I have nice thick foam...even if I'm working panel by panel, sometimes all that up and down the stepstool to get to the top of the truck, or if I get distracted by something and it takes longer to do a panel, the suds are always "running" so at least with the suds bucket I'm extra safe to have a nice soapy slippery mitt.

 

Thanks again :)

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It was many months ago I put this post up, and I still refer back to it today.  Now that here in the Chicago area the weather has begun to change, I have some additional questions I was hoping someone could help me out with...

 

1)  If you are washing with deionized water, a foam cannon, a rinse bucket, and wash media.  Do you fill the rinse bucket with Deionized water as well?

2)  If you were doing a 2-bucket wash with deionized water, would you fill the suds bucket with deionized water?

3)  If you are using a 2nd or third bucket for a "wheels" bucket, what do you fill the bucket with?  Deionized water & shampoo?  Or just Deionized Water?  Or just regular water?

4)  It was mentioned above that folks use detail spray and a drying towel to clean up water spots (if flow drying) or as a drying agent if not blow drying.  My truck has a Modesta coating on it so it was recommended to use waterless wash instead of detail spray.  Why is that?  Does waterless wash work the same as detail spray?  When you use the waterless wash in this fashion, what kind of towel do you use?  One of the waffle weave "waterless wash towels" or would you just use the same type of towel (single soft or double soft or maybe even a great white drying towel) that you'd use if you were using detail spray (i.e. you are performing the exact same process as with detail spray...but just using waterless wash instead)?

 

Thanks!

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For questions 1-3, I use tap water.  The shampoo from the foam cannon or the shampoo in the bucket (questions 2 & 3) is adequate to prevent spotting of the tap water until the DI water final rinse.

 

Detail Spray has some wax, which is not advisable on a coating.  The Waterless Wash has no wax, but still has polymers to aid in safe drying.

 

You can use any of the mentioned towels for full drying or incidental drying.  I prefer to use a plush towel for incidental drying.

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Dan has you covered.  The typical use for deionized water would be for the final rinse or perhaps for diluting your products. Using deionized water as your final rinse buys you more time to dry your vehicle without fear of water spots. 

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Best to use DI water for the whole process or only for the final rinse?  And let's assume you are doing a two bucket wash.  I sometimes wonder if some form of mineral in my water is what creates some of the swirl marks in my cleaning process when doing two bucket and a towel dry afterwards.

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Ok everyone, here is my DI water setup at our shop.  I own a limo company and am trying to save employee hours by eliminating the drying process.  Problem is, immediately after we installed these two DI tanks, we our pressure washer took a dump.  No pressure, motor worked fine but no pressure.  So we went out and bought a new one.  Literally, 3 days later, bam, same thing.  Pressure washer stopped working.  Took it back in for the warranty and when they looked into it they said the warranty was voided because there was what looked like rust in the water pump.  While we thought this was ridiculous, there was nothing we can do.  I have attached pic of the lines where there was dirt or rust in the pump.


So, then I was told we might be burning the pressure washers because there we had bigger pressure washers and they might be pulling more water than what is coming in, so I bought a cheap little electric pressure washer, I think it only required 1.5 gallons per minute or something like that.  It was a $100 pressure washer.  Same thing after using for about an hour.  

 

Only thing in common with the 3 pressure washers is that we were running the DI water through them.  An Reverse Osmosis guy I talked to said the water might be too pure, rusting the insides of the water pump.  My DI guy says thats ridiculous but has no clue why my pressure washers can be going bad.  What gives?!?  What am I doing wrong?

https://ibb.co/1dqHwP8 

https://ibb.co/YQFLjGX

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5 minutes ago, HeavenOnWheels said:

Ok everyone, here is my DI water setup at our shop.  I own a limo company and am trying to save employee hours by eliminating the drying process.  Problem is, immediately after we installed these two DI tanks, we our pressure washer took a dump.  No pressure, motor worked fine but no pressure.  So we went out and bought a new one.  Literally, 3 days later, bam, same thing.  Pressure washer stopped working.  Took it back in for the warranty and when they looked into it they said the warranty was voided because there was what looked like rust in the water pump.  While we thought this was ridiculous, there was nothing we can do.  I have attached pic of the lines where there was dirt or rust in the pump.


So, then I was told we might be burning the pressure washers because there we had bigger pressure washers and they might be pulling more water than what is coming in, so I bought a cheap little electric pressure washer, I think it only required 1.5 gallons per minute or something like that.  It was a $100 pressure washer.  Same thing after using for about an hour.  

 

Only thing in common with the 3 pressure washers is that we were running the DI water through them.  An Reverse Osmosis guy I talked to said the water might be too pure, rusting the insides of the water pump.  My DI guy says thats ridiculous but has no clue why my pressure washers can be going bad.  What gives?!?  What am I doing wrong?

https://ibb.co/1dqHwP8 

https://ibb.co/YQFLjGX

 

IMG_0044-preview.JPG

IMG_9005.JPG

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1 minute ago, mc2hill said:

@HeavenOnWheels  How long does it take to wash and dry with the DI water?  Have you looked into Rinseless Wash (panel by panel) as an alternative?

 

With the DI water, we don't dry it at all after the wash.  No water spots at all.  Literally cuts our time to wash the outside of a limo in less than half.  

 

What we are doing now is using the pressure washer to pre-rinse, foam cannon and then we do a final rinse with the DI water on a separate hose.  

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