Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: West Grove, PA
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Personally, I have a "system" for washing my cars. I start with the highest-pressure setting on the hose via one of those "select-a-spray-pattern" nozzles - I use that over the entire car and make sure any of the "big" stuff is removed first - and if it's not removed by the pressure alone, I then address that area first, before I move on to the "wash mitt" phase. I recently started using the "two bucket" method so that I keep the "dirty" water separate from the "clean, soapy water".
I then actually wash the car using one of those mitts with all of the little things hanging off of it (dont' know what it's actually called). To me, a foam cannon just woulnd't be enough to actually remove all of the dirt and grime, even after the initial "high pressure" rinse I do - so I think I'd still need to actually "wash" the car by hand anyway, which is why I question the usefullness of the foam cannon.
I start at the top, wash a section at a time (roof, windshield, rear windshield, hood, trunklid) - wash and rinse a section at a time (rinse with the "shower" setting on the nozzle). Then I do the sides, the front, the back and finally the wheels. I think some people recommend doing the wheels first, but I always figured that they are usually the diretiest, so I do them last. Not sure it really matters if you clean the mitt well after each section/area.
Then - I use this almost-rubber-like "thing" to get most of the water off (it's like a fake chamois). I've owned it for years and I love it because it soaks up TONS of water - and it's easy to wring-out. Then I go back over the car again and get it completely dry with the rubber-like thing and/or a drying towel. I also make sure to dry the windows really well (although, I almost always end up redoing the windows with actual glass cleaner anyway).
Then I move on to open the doors and dry all of the door jamb areas and the bottom of the doors real well (known rust area if neglected).
Then I enjoy the nice clean car, at least for an hour or two until it rains or I drive at dusk and get thousands of bugs all over the front end. :-)
Believe it or not, I've had excellent results just using an inexpensive Turtle Wax car wash/wax solution. It leaves a fantastic shine without even waxing the car....