Hey all, I wrote this up to help a buddy. He had no idea how to wash a car well, so wrote this little how to up, hope it helps someone
Large bucket for your soapy water, if using a brush, make sure it is large enough for the brush to be submerged completely.
Fill bucket with water and soap, loosely follow the directions for the soap as far as how much of the liquid to use to water, i tend to use about 25-50% more than they call for. If your bucket gets low on water during washing add a bit more liquid soap and fill back up. The dirt your clothe or brush picks up will settle at the bottom, so you don't want to pick it back up and wash the car with that grit.
Preparing to wash, RINSE the whole car TOP to BOTTOM using water from your hose. The idea here is to knock any loose large particle of dirt off the car and to cool the paint. Hot paint dries the soap and causes spots. Never attempt to wash the entire car in one go. Make sure the roof is very wet and wash it, rinse, then move to other panels, only wash what wont dry, then rinse and move on. Always rinse top to bottom, making sure to remove ALL soap. Rewet the towel used to wash often in the bucket, putting the towel in the bucket helps to wash off the grit from the towel so you are not scratching the paint.
Once car is washed, we can move onto the wheels, this serves two purposes, it allows the car to dry in prep. for other things, and we DO NOT want to use dirty water from washing the wheels to wash the car with. If your soap bucket is TRULY nasty from doing the car, make fresh soap water. 1st wet the wheel and tire well, the liberally apply the bleche-wyte tire cleaner, preferably a short bristle brush to SCRUB the tire with, and any hard/stubborn brake dust on the wheel. Wash the wheel with the rag. Rinse well. While your down here washing the wheel and tire, it is also a good time to rinse your wheel wells out.
Once the car is DRY, then we can start applying the wax, I prefer a foam wax applicator.
If using a liquid wax, apply it to the applicator and in circular motion run/work into the paint. If using a paste wax rub applicator in the paste then onto the paint.
Apply wax to a complete panel, and move onto the next to apply. As the first panel dries to a haze, take a clean terry/microfiber cloth and polish the wax off, you will use circular motion here as well to remove the wax. Flip the towel often to get a clean side of the towel to prevent build up of the dried wax on the towel. Continue this to complete the car. Optionally you may apply wax to the glass and headlights/tailights as well.
Do not apply wax to any rough/porous surface as it is a ***** to remove. Do not apply wax to rubber item either. It will haze up and be a ***** to remove and you'll have this white crap all over the car.
Once you are done waxing, the tires will be dry as well, Take your tire shine spray can, spray closely to the tire to avoid over spray of the tire shine on the paint.
Take a spare wax applicator that is CLEAN and spray some on the applicator as well, run the applicator over the tire to even out and distribute the shine all over the tire sidewall. Allow to dry 15-30 minutes before driving to avoid slinging it on the paint.
Now move inside the car, remove all trash and dispose of it. Remove all items from car temp. Vacuum well, remove floor mats and vacuum beneath and also the mats. Once vacuumed well we can clean the vinyl and other surfaces. Make a clean bucket of soap water, use very little of the soap liquid this time. Using a clean terry cloth towel soak it in the bucket and wring out well to just damp. Now clean the interior, you can use this towel on basically everything in the car, scrub and rub til all clean, paying close attention to the steering wheel and driver side door panel, basically anything you touch regularly. If it does no come clean you can use something a bit stronger, I like diluted purple power, or mean green cleaners. Any mild degreaser will work well, Nothing too strong. If you have used a degreaser or something stronger to clean stubborn stains/dirt go back over it with your mild soapy water terry clothe to remove the degreaser from the surface.
cleaing the windows is an art imo, I prefer ammonia and unprinted news paper or that awesome brown paper you get in the bathroom do dry your hands on, spray cleaner on glass and wad your paper up into a ball, scrub, and before it dries completely flip your ball over to a DRY side to do the final wipe. Rubbing alcohol also is a decent window cleaner. If your windows are tinted DO NOT use ammonia it will destroy the adhesive used for the tint.
you may also apply sparingly the interior shine if you so choose. Spray the product on a CLEAN foam applicator pad, or if you do not have on, on a small cotton/terry cloth, and wipe the dash/interior with it. DO NOT get it on the glass, it is a pain in the ass to remove from glass. This product may also be used on exterior trim pieces to shine them up as well, tire shine will also work on exterior trim pieces.
As always if some one notices something I missed or has a better way of doing so, please add to the thread