: Car Washes on Black Cars ?



Frikiton
04-11-11, 06:55 PM
Hey folks, I have a black on black STS and after this winter (SNOW, Auto Car Washes, hand car washes) noticed my car has so many swirls all over I can't take it anymore. Since I live in the city and obviously auto-car-washes are more common than hand car washes or brushless/touchless washes here in the city.

I'm so mad and sad at the same time when I got the car on christmas it had not even 1 scratch or swirl. Now its all over the clear coat and I want to make it look brand spanking new again.
My cousin told me to take it to a full detailing shop and get a compound detail (hand washed out, detailed inside, and the compound on the paint then wax to make it all scratches go away and bring gloss back)

How do you take care of your black car and swirls when you live in the city?
Make the effort and only go to hand car washes?
Brushless car washes?
Or maybe not all auto-car-washes really scratch your car?

turnerbend
04-11-11, 08:30 PM
If you own a black car! grin and bare it.

chazglenn3
04-11-11, 09:38 PM
The only way to avoid swirls on gloss black cars is hand washing and you have to be careful then to make sure all the dust is rinsed off before you wash. I owned a 1972 Cutlass Supreme a few years back that had 3 coats of Sikkens Pure Black paint and 3 coats of clear on top of it. It looked like you could stick your hand right into the paint. I maintained it with hand washing and Zaino show car polishing products. Got to be too much work to keep it looking nice (I HATE clay barring) so I sold it. You will be able to get the finish back to where it was...it just will cost you time or money if you have a detail shop do it...I would :cool:

EChas3
04-11-11, 11:22 PM
Black can look great but it shows every flaw. My favorite car color is deep red - carmine.

Grey or silver cars are popular now that the manufacturers have overcome the peeling issues. They show dirt the least but can be bland, IMHO.

Surprisingly, white is the most common car color, perhaps due to fleet & rental cars. They also look cleaner longer because they tend to not show salt in the snowbelt. The Cadillac Pearl & Diamond varieties can really catch the eye.

chagrin falls
04-12-11, 05:10 AM
Car washes will destroy the finish on cars-it is just more visible on black. Even if you carefully hand wash a black car you will get scratches. I would even use an air compressor to blow out the water from mirrors, crease lines, etc. I always drove black cars, the last one was a '01 DTS. For years I detailed my cars myself. Then had a detailer takeover. There is nothing better than a detailed black car but drive them a few day and the dust takes over and if it rains you are back to square one and back to the detailer. I got to the point I wouldn't even wash them myself. It drove me crazy!! I finally realized I was paying my detailer more than my monthly payment on the car. After the DTS I went with a "champagne" colored STS and now I'm driving a '10 Vanilla Latte CTS. Believe me, life is much easier now and the car always looks great. But there is nothing like a new black car on a showroom floor!

Frikiton
04-12-11, 05:21 AM
Car washes will destroy the finish on cars-it is just more visible on black. Even if you carefully hand wash a black car you will get scratches. I would even use an air compressor to blow out the water from mirrors, crease lines, etc. I always drove black cars, the last one was a '01 DTS. For years I detailed my cars myself. Then had a detailer takeover. There is nothing better than a detailed black car but drive them a few day and the dust takes over and if it rains you are back to square one and back to the detailer. I got to the point I wouldn't even wash them myself. It drove me crazy!! I finally realized I was paying my detailer more than my monthly payment on the car. After the DTS I went with a "champagne" colored STS and now I'm driving a '10 Vanilla Latte CTS. Believe me, life is much easier now and the car always looks great. But there is nothing like a new black car on a showroom floor!

I agree, this will be my first and last black car lol. But what type of car washes you took it to? I might just stick with brushless and do a wax/buff to remove the scratches when the weather shows high temps and no rain for a week at least.

chagrin falls
04-12-11, 10:20 AM
I used to wash them myself but then had my detail guy hand wash them. It was only $20. and there were no drips or water runs. Once a month I would have him wax it for $100.00 and once a quarter a full detail. I live in a small town and I'm sure these charges don't even equate to Manhattan. Enjoy your car while you can.

Frikiton
04-12-11, 10:41 AM
I used to wash them myself but then had my detail guy hand wash them. It was only $20. and there were no drips or water runs. Once a month I would have him wax it for $100.00 and once a quarter a full detail. I live in a small town and I'm sure these charges don't even equate to Manhattan. Enjoy your car while you can.

Your price is pretty much in the range of what they charge here.
I know of a place that charges $25 for hand wash, another $20, and another $15.

I just got a full wash + vacuum + armor all for $10 in a brushless wash. Car looks beautiful.

Before
http://localhostr.com/files/v1ncljA/IMG-20110412-00053.jpg

After
http://localhostr.com/files/XjXJ4pU/IMG-20110412-00055.jpg

ddalder
04-12-11, 08:51 PM
As much as I love a clean, well polished black car, I could never own one. Everyone I've spoken with from owners to professional detailers talk about the incredible amount of maintenance required to keep them looking good. Many shops I've visited charge quite a bit more to polish dark colours just because it's really hard to deal with the swirls and make it look good. Keep it clean on a very regular basis and stick with a hand wash or touchless wash. I regularly see people at the self-wash scrubbing away with the foaming brush. I cringe over what they're doing to their paint.

Neutrocuted
04-12-11, 11:05 PM
...Surprisingly, white is the most common car color, perhaps due to fleet & rental cars. They also look cleaner longer because they tend to not show salt in the snowbelt. The Cadillac Pearl & Diamond varieties can really catch the eye.

I would have a difference of opinion on this. I've had both and I think, IMHO, they both look bad when just a little dirty. Both are hard to keep clean. White cars are not as impressive as black cars when clean, but the work involved in keeping them clean is more than I care to do now days. I have a silver metallic one now and it is the easiest of them all because they don't show dust and light grime like the black or white ones do. Just my .02 worth.

ddalder
04-12-11, 11:12 PM
I would have a difference of opinion on this. I've had both and I think, IMHO, they both look bad when just a little dirty. Both are hard to keep clean. White cars are not as impressive as black cars when clean, but the work involved in keeping them clean is more than I care to do now days. I have a silver metallic one now and it is the easiest of them all because they don't show dust and light grime like the black or white ones do. Just my .02 worth.
I would have to agree, at least from the experience I've had. Over the years I've owned blue (varying shades), dark gray and silver. By far the silver was easy to keep up and difficult to see dirt on. There are a lot of silver cars out there so it wasn't my first pick. At the time choices were limited and in many respects I wasn't unhappy with the colour after all was said and done.

mbnv992
04-12-11, 11:15 PM
I've had several black cars / trucks over the years, and everytime I'd take them to a car wash, I'd find little white swirl markings in the paint. That would piss me off the no extent, but, that was the marks from the car wash equipment.
NOW, we have what's called "touch-less" car washes, where you drive your car in a small bay, and it rinses, soaps, and drys your car without no machine parts touching your car. If anyone has a touchless car wash in your area, I highly recommend trying them out. They are really neat !

Frikiton
04-13-11, 10:22 PM
I've had several black cars / trucks over the years, and everytime I'd take them to a car wash, I'd find little white swirl markings in the paint. That would piss me off the no extent, but, that was the marks from the car wash equipment.
NOW, we have what's called "touch-less" car washes, where you drive your car in a small bay, and it rinses, soaps, and drys your car without no machine parts touching your car. If anyone has a touchless car wash in your area, I highly recommend trying them out. They are really neat !

Is touchless almost the same as brushless ?

CTBB
04-15-11, 11:18 AM
While my STS is a more neutral "Sand" color, my garage queen is an Ebony Mica Pearl, or what I call "Blackberry" in color, and I've been reading up and accumulating tools and supplies to really take care of the paint, including a Porter-Cable random orbit, or "dual action" polisher and pads in 7" and 3" sizes with Meguiar's Pro and Consumer products, ultimate compound, polish and wax in liquid form. It can soon become a sickness, and absorb all your available cash! LOL!! Old water spots in the glass can also be polished out, and the red plastic lamps can be made to gleam like gems, as can headlamps! I'll get some pics up this spring and summer as I put her back together with all the upgraded lamps and HIR bulbs in place. We micro-meshed them up to 12,000 grit by hand, then polished with 3" pads and compound, then polished and waxed them, off the car. So far I've "practiced" on 2 other cars with much more abused finishes than my "baby", but am nearing the day I see how well the industrial pollution scarred finish on the sunroof will react to some "loving care". Pics to come!

OH! Best tip from my reading is the 2 Bucket System, using "grit guards" in both buckets http://meguiarsdirect.com/detail/MEG+X3003 and separate mitts in each one, working down from the top to the most soiled parts along the bottom. Wheels washed with separate mit/rag and cleaner/treatment/dressing. Clay barring is a revelation to anyone truly "hooked" on car finish care. Am I hooked?? :bonkers:

Glenn

bbjorklund99
04-15-11, 12:53 PM
I feel your pain! Prior to buying my Cadillac I had an 02 Chrysler 300m in black. I always got compliments on how nice it looked when I had it clean and the chrome wheels polished. The down side was that it was difficult to keep clean and the paint swirls and door dings were discouraging. I was a regular customer of the paintless dent guy and detail shops in the area. I decided that I am not going to take my Cadillac into any car wash that has brushes of any kind in hopes that I can reduce the paint swirls and keep it looking nicer. The black color is far prettier when it is clean than the gray color of my new Caddy but I am hoping that the gray will be easier to keep clean.

Enjoy your new ride, it looks great!

Brad

Frikiton
04-16-11, 04:15 AM
Yea Black is definitely Black .. it stands out when its clean really nice
I also like white but its easy to see when its dirty.
My fav color has to be Silver/Platinum color, not the boring gray.
I did see this new color on a CTS which I was surprised how good it looked.
It's like a green/blueish maybe moonstone kinda.

bbjorklund99
04-16-11, 09:10 AM
Yea Black is definitely Black .. it stands out when its clean really nice
I also like white but its easy to see when its dirty.
My fav color has to be Silver/Platinum color, not the boring gray.
I did see this new color on a CTS which I was surprised how good it looked.
It's like a green/blueish maybe moonstone kinda.

I have the boring gray color and while it is not the color I would have chosen had I been buying new I could not pass up this car. For a 2006 I could not believe the condition. It was a one owner and the guy spent winters in Arizona and summers in Northern MN. With the exception of the floor mat having a little dirt on them it looked almost as good as the 2011 that was on the showroom floor. The exterior color is kind of growing on me and the interior is a light gray which is nice looking. The only color that was off the table for me was "pink". It is pretty hard to find a color that looks ugly on these STS's. Overall I really like the car and hope it turns out to be a good one.

Good Day Gentlemen!

EChas3
04-18-11, 09:46 PM
Cadillac is required to repaint Mary Kay cars when the lease is up.

chazglenn3
04-18-11, 11:45 PM
Interesting...that explains why you don't see used ones on the road.

Zpak
04-21-11, 10:01 PM
I love my Black...gets detailed twice a year ..
Winter, I use touchless car wash weekly. Get rid of sand and salt.
Summer I hand wash it ... Unfortunately, still see swirls but not as much.
Considering it is 3 yrs. old. No ding.scratch, dents at all.
Hope to buy the same Black XLR 2008 that is for sale w/ 4K miles on it if I can get it
at a reasonable price. It will be the summer car.

GizmoQ
04-23-11, 09:48 PM
Hope to buy the same Black XLR 2008 that is for sale w/ 4K miles on it if I can get it at a reasonable price. It will be the summer car.

Just remember Summer is only 3 months long. I tend to drive mine from April to October, but the forum buds made me bring it out in February this year for the Chicago Auto Show.

EChas3
04-23-11, 10:23 PM
The way I remember Summer in St. Louis, it was May-September!

I've seen an XLR in royal blue that looks very good, too.

Jmac572
04-25-11, 04:33 PM
I also use a Porter Cable polisher to keep my car up to spec.... there is not a single swirl anywhere on my paint, you couldnt tell the difference between my car and a 2012 black STS when looking up close. I get all of my advice from the website below, and trust me if you think you cant operate your own buffer/polisher you are wrong, a random/orbital buffer is nearly impossible to burn thru paint whereas a rotary buffer will go right thru no problem, buy a random orbital Porter Cable and hit you car with it every 2-3 months and it will forever look brand spankin' new

www.paintcare-n-detailing.com

chazglenn3
04-26-11, 09:08 AM
Great web site! Thanks for sharing!

Frikiton
04-27-11, 02:43 AM
I also use a Porter Cable polisher to keep my car up to spec.... there is not a single swirl anywhere on my paint, you couldnt tell the difference between my car and a 2012 black STS when looking up close. I get all of my advice from the website below, and trust me if you think you cant operate your own buffer/polisher you are wrong, a random/orbital buffer is nearly impossible to burn thru paint whereas a rotary buffer will go right thru no problem, buy a random orbital Porter Cable and hit you car with it every 2-3 months and it will forever look brand spankin' new

www.paintcare-n-detailing.com

Thanks for the website

Frikiton
06-24-11, 08:44 PM
Thinking of buying these things,

Armor All Multi-Purpose Auto Cleaner, 20 oz
http://www.buy.com/prod/armor-all-multi-purpose-auto-cleaner-20-oz/q/loc/66357/204594626.html


Eco Touch Quick Wax, 24 oz
http://www.buy.com/prod/eco-touch-quick-wax-24-oz/q/loc/66357/216831386.html


Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash, 24 oz
http://www.buy.com/listing/sellerlistings.asp?sku=216027076


Bayes Waterless Car Wash, 32 oz
http://www.buy.com/listing/sellerlistings.asp?sku=216026903


ArmorAll 6600BC All-In-One Wash Dry Detailing Car Kit
http://www.buy.com/listing/sellerlistings.asp?sku=218656430

What do ya think?

chazglenn3
06-24-11, 10:20 PM
I still think there are no better products on the market for black cars than Zaino Bros. products.

550HP STSV
06-25-11, 08:14 AM
agreed. zaino is the best possible outcome for black cars.

ddalder
06-25-11, 12:05 PM
I also use a Porter Cable polisher to keep my car up to spec.... there is not a single swirl anywhere on my paint, you couldnt tell the difference between my car and a 2012 black STS when looking up close. I get all of my advice from the website below, and trust me if you think you cant operate your own buffer/polisher you are wrong, a random/orbital buffer is nearly impossible to burn thru paint whereas a rotary buffer will go right thru no problem, buy a random orbital Porter Cable and hit you car with it every 2-3 months and it will forever look brand spankin' new

www.paintcare-n-detailing.com
Definitely a great site. Without a building or facility though I can't follow the exterior wash steps here. Most car washes won't let you hand wash and it's illegal to wash on the street or back alley unless you use clear water only.

KRSTS
06-25-11, 01:48 PM
WTF? Does Canada have a "car wash" police squad?:histeric

ddalder
06-25-11, 02:37 PM
WTF? Does Canada have a "car wash" police squad?:histeric
The city I live in passed a by-law making it illegal. Soapy water enters the storm drains in the streets and alleys. This water empties directly into our rivers and doesn't pass through a waste water treatment facility. Because of environmental impact, it isn't permitted. This isn't Canada wide though. Fines are $75 - $10,000 for violating the drainage water by-law. First offence for washing a vehicle with soap is $3,000.

KRSTS
06-25-11, 05:16 PM
3K. Wow, that will should make people comply.:bonkers:

EChas3
06-25-11, 07:49 PM
Might as well pay someone $12 to do the job for you!

Jesda
06-26-11, 11:45 PM
Some municipalities have ordinances against driveway car washes. They claim the chemicals get into the groundwater or something.

Frikiton
06-27-11, 12:03 AM
Thinking of buying these things,

Armor All Multi-Purpose Auto Cleaner, 20 oz
http://www.buy.com/prod/armor-all-multi-purpose-auto-cleaner-20-oz/q/loc/66357/204594626.html


Eco Touch Quick Wax, 24 oz
http://www.buy.com/prod/eco-touch-quick-wax-24-oz/q/loc/66357/216831386.html


Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash, 24 oz
http://www.buy.com/listing/sellerlistings.asp?sku=216027076


Bayes Waterless Car Wash, 32 oz
http://www.buy.com/listing/sellerlistings.asp?sku=216026903


ArmorAll 6600BC All-In-One Wash Dry Detailing Car Kit
http://www.buy.com/listing/sellerlistings.asp?sku=218656430

What do ya think?

So no one here with experience on black cars would recommend any of these for a person like me that lives in the city and sometimes don't want to take the car every week to the car wash and was thinking maybe I can use some of these items here & clean it while its parked or sometimes when I'm in a rush ? I was thinking car wash every 2-3 weeks and use something like these items I found to keep it clean during the busy days (waterless spray etc) give it a lil shine (Clean look, remove some dust)

Jmac572
06-29-11, 10:03 AM
So no one here with experience on black cars would recommend any of these for a person like me that lives in the city and sometimes don't want to take the car every week to the car wash and was thinking maybe I can use some of these items here & clean it while its parked or sometimes when I'm in a rush ? I was thinking car wash every 2-3 weeks and use something like these items I found to keep it clean during the busy days (waterless spray etc) give it a lil shine (Clean look, remove some dust)

Frikiton, I can't say that I have any experience with those products so I, personally, wouldn't want to recommend them to you...

There are two things people should know about car care… First thing is AVOID CARWASHES AT ALL COSTS!!! Although touch-less washes are fine, just one drive through a car wash will un-do hours of paint correction and buffing and put those swirls right back on your paint. The second thing is, know the difference between a WAX and a SEALANT. Auto wax is a natural product that was introduced as an agent to protect auto paint finishes and keep them looking good, however, even the best wax will only protect a finish for 3-4 weeks MAX (and most car wax manufacturers add only 10-15% wax where the other 85-90% is silicone fillers to temporarily make your car look great). On the other side, sealants were introduced much later than auto waxes but intended for the same purpose as a wax. Being that sealants are synthetic, they were chemically engineered to bond to a paints surface resulting in much longer protection anywhere from 6-12 months depending on the brand, the selloff is that you may sacrifice a little bit of look.

Initially a wax will look slightly better on your paint than a sealant, however, the longevity is the downfall to a wax. The “water beading” effect stays true with a sealant for almost a full 12 months.

Here is what I recommend for you… after washing (and claying and buffing if possible) apply “Klasse High Gloss” Sealant (once in the spring and once in the fall), and follow up with “Pinnacle Souveran” wax the day after if you really want your black car to look great. Yes, souveran is expensive, but at nearly a 50% wax content, it contains the most amount of wax possible before it becomes an unworkable brick of wax (as carnauba in its natural form is extremely hard and brick-like), the other 50% are oils and fillers meant to smooth out the carnauba and will fill in the light-catching minor scratches and swirls that people dread so much.

As for a quick wax, I use Pinnacle Souveran's spray wax... to my knowledge it is one of the very few liquid-waxes that actually contains wax in it, other spray waxes contain little to no wax in them and only silicone fillers. For waterless car wash products, again, I’ve never tried any, only because I always have access to a hose, however, for people who don’t it seems like a pretty good deal.

One more thing is remember that no matter what type of protectant you apply to a paint, it will only cover what you apply it to and will not make bad paint magically look great. You really have to compound buff and polish poor paint wich removes swirls, scratches, and braised paint so you can apply your protectant over that.

Frikiton
07-05-11, 07:52 AM
So I been looking at the Griots and Zaino products and I can't seem to find anything beneficial for me from Zaino since I don't have my own garage to wash my car at home. But I did find the spray-on car wash stuff from Griot that seems to be exactly what I'm looking for. But I also want something to keep the shine or something related to that. Also, something that can reduce the dust from staying on the car.

I haven't bought anything yet but hopefully by this week

malatu
07-05-11, 09:46 AM
Have you considered using a "dust brush" designed for cars? Fast and easy.

Frikiton
07-19-11, 03:57 AM
Have you considered using a "dust brush" designed for cars? Fast and easy.
Haven't seen this

Jesda
07-19-11, 04:40 AM
California Car Duster

Follow the instructions for prepping and maintaining it, and enjoy.