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What is your Preferred Method for Winter Detailing?


ajdipao
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Winter seems to be rapidly approaching, which can only mean one thing for detailing. Cold hands and dealing with frozen water on paint! I live in the northeast region of the US and winter can be pretty harsh here. Salt, rocks and other road grime attach themselves to my cars and frustrate me! Maintaining my vehicles in the winter always seems to be more of a chore rather than enjoyable like the rest of the year. This is only my second winter as a somewhat real detailer. I am now looking to explore different methods for performing my winter washes. 

In the past, I washed my cars the same way I would perform a normal maintenance wash. I needed to look at the weather in advance to make sure it was above freezing temperatures in order to do a full wash. About half of the time this didn’t work out exactly as planned. The sun wouldn’t hit the cars, or clouds were in the way and water froze. Doing a full wash is the safest way for the cars paint, but the conditions often make it difficult to do this! Another method I may explore is a rinseless wash. All that would be necessary is a single bucket of warm water, Adams Polishes rinseless wash, and a bunch of clean towels. I would go through cleaning one panel at a time gently and then dry immediately after. My worries with this process are scratching the paint and doing a comprehensive job. My last option is to go to a self-serve pay and spray car wash using their warm water pressure washer. However, we all know their brushes and chemicals are harsh and terrible for a car. I would need to bring my own soap and bucket of water. It is also slightly more difficult to dry because of being respectful and moving out of the wash bay. I would need to pull over and dry it in the sun. 

My question to you is, what process do you use for detailing in the winter? What are the positives and negatives of each process? 

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Welcome, AJ! Be sure to post an intro in the New Member forum.

 

Adam has a couple videos on this very question. Take note of the process, products, etc. Lots of great advice and is a good model of what I like to do. And for the record, a pay and spray first at a local wash to get most crud off and a subsequent Rinseless Wash at home works great. Enjoy!

 

 

 

I also just bought these to help with cold hands in the winter. Have yet to use them, but they look promising.

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B07D3678LX?psc=1&ref=yo_pop_mb_pd_title

 

 

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I live in SW PA and we're having a snow storm right now.  Every year in the fall I do a full detail, including wax, before it gets too cold to detail. Once the snow flies and the temps drop (like they've been this month) about the only thing I do is wash it when it gets above 50 on those rare days.  Once I get it washed, I use the Master Blaster to blow the water off and dry it, then just Guard n Gloss. And if there is a day when it's possible during the winter, I might get another coat of wax on it.  My plan is to make sure the paint has been well protected ahead of time, then just do the best I can to keep it looking decent.  Some years it's a losing battle. I think this is going to be one of those years.  Snow and 20* in November is never good.

 

Welcome to the forum A.J. :welcomebanner:

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Here is my winter routine. I live in CT. I go to my local pay and spray and bring supplies with me. I try to go during the day, and avoid the lunchtime “rush” and never on a weekend. And I have a pair of thick rubber gloves that are wool lined and come up to almost my elbows that I use to keep my hands warm and dry. I only use them for washing the truck in the winter so they stay clean. 

I bring my Adams bucket with gamma seal lid filled with hot water and soap. I add money to the machine and do a methodical rinse in hopes of getting majority of heavy dirt rinsed off. Once the time runs out, I then I go around and with my hot soapy water, And give the truck a bath. Then add more money and rinse it off. Once that’s done, if no one is waiting I then dry using detail spray or H2OGG. If someone did pull in behind me than I pull out into one of the parking spots and dry it out there. 

My local pay and spray added a nice feature last year. They have an undercarriage wand sprayer ( much like the one Adams is selling this year). They add “Salt A Way” to the wand. I have gone a couple times last year just to use this a day or two after a storm and the roads have cleared up and dried out. 

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Pay and spray combined with a rinseless wash is the way to go. 

 

I use a sponge as my wash media and it goes super fast. Being that I have a little car, the wash may take me 15 minutes or so with drying included. 

 

Use a drying aid and get the water off fast for less chance of freezing. The drying aid will help pick up the water because cold water doesn't like to evaporate. 

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On 11/27/2018 at 9:48 PM, falcaineer said:

Welcome, AJ! Be sure to post an intro in the New Member forum.

 

Adam has a couple videos on this very question. Take note of the process, products, etc. Lots of great advice and is a good model of what I like to do. And for the record, a pay and spray first at a local wash to get most crud off and a subsequent Rinseless Wash at home works great. Enjoy!

 

 

 

I also just bought these to help with cold hands in the winter. Have yet to use them, but they look promising.

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B07D3678LX?psc=1&ref=yo_pop_mb_pd_title

 

 

Thanks for the suggestion!

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On 11/27/2018 at 9:59 PM, Rich said:

I live in SW PA and we're having a snow storm right now.  Every year in the fall I do a full detail, including wax, before it gets too cold to detail. Once the snow flies and the temps drop (like they've been this month) about the only thing I do is wash it when it gets above 50 on those rare days.  Once I get it washed, I use the Master Blaster to blow the water off and dry it, then just Guard n Gloss. And if there is a day when it's possible during the winter, I might get another coat of wax on it.  My plan is to make sure the paint has been well protected ahead of time, then just do the best I can to keep it looking decent.  Some years it's a losing battle. I think this is going to be one of those years.  Snow and 20* in November is never good.

 

Welcome to the forum A.J. :welcomebanner:

Thanks for sharing your process!

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On 11/28/2018 at 7:24 AM, Firebuff17 said:

Here is my winter routine. I live in CT. I go to my local pay and spray and bring supplies with me. I try to go during the day, and avoid the lunchtime “rush” and never on a weekend. And I have a pair of thick rubber gloves that are wool lined and come up to almost my elbows that I use to keep my hands warm and dry. I only use them for washing the truck in the winter so they stay clean. 

I bring my Adams bucket with gamma seal lid filled with hot water and soap. I add money to the machine and do a methodical rinse in hopes of getting majority of heavy dirt rinsed off. Once the time runs out, I then I go around and with my hot soapy water, And give the truck a bath. Then add more money and rinse it off. Once that’s done, if no one is waiting I then dry using detail spray or H2OGG. If someone did pull in behind me than I pull out into one of the parking spots and dry it out there. 

My local pay and spray added a nice feature last year. They have an undercarriage wand sprayer ( much like the one Adams is selling this year). They add “Salt A Way” to the wand. I have gone a couple times last year just to use this a day or two after a storm and the roads have cleared up and dried out. 

Thanks for sharing!

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On 11/28/2018 at 7:38 AM, cwp2016nd said:

Pay and spray combined with a rinseless wash is the way to go. 

 

I use a sponge as my wash media and it goes super fast. Being that I have a little car, the wash may take me 15 minutes or so with drying included. 

 

Use a drying aid and get the water off fast for less chance of freezing. The drying aid will help pick up the water because cold water doesn't like to evaporate. 

Thanks!

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