Classic Driver - - EXPERT ADVICE -

Hi, I’m Adrian Schon­born, pro­fes­sional au­to­mo­tive de­tailer and owner of Pure Im­pres­sions Ltd, and wel­come to my first Car Care col­umn.

I’m ex­cited about shar­ing ad­vice with you on how to best care for and pro­tect your ve­hi­cle. I was trained in Europe by some of the best de­tail­ers in the world and pride my­self on be­ing the best in New Zealand. We stock some of the top prod­ucts avail­able in­clud­ing the Cor­ro­sionX and A-Glaze range, and I wanted to kick things off by dis­cussing paint pro­tec­tion and how best to get your paint look­ing bet­ter than new.

We have a won­der­ful cul­ture in New Zealand of get­ting away in our clas­sic cars. How­ever, of­ten we ne­glect to con­sider pro­tec­tion of our ve­hi­cle’s paint­work from all the dirt, dust, grime, tar and other nas­ties that at­tack it. The good news is, achiev­ing long last­ing deep, mir­ror-like shine is only a few steps away.

Firstly, it is very im­por­tant to pre­pare your paint­work. This is what makes all the dif­fer­ence. Start by wash­ing the car prop­erly. I al­ways have one bucket of A-Glaze car sham­poo for the top half of the car, and one for the lower half and wheels, as the lower half is gen­er­ally more prone to dirt and grime. Rinse first, use a wash mitt and work top to bot­tom with the sham­poo and then rinse again. Dry the car with a mi­crofiber towel or chamois.

The next step is de­con­tam­i­na­tion. This re­moves all those small frag­ments of metal, tree sap, dirt and tar that get in­grained into your paint­work. These are not al­ways ob­vi­ous un­til this step is done and you see how much grime comes off! Use a clay bar for this and work it over the car’s paint­work – it feels like play dough and when it gets dirty re­mould it un­til you get a new clean por­tion. Most people are amazed at what has col­lected over time! Clay bars are not ex­pen­sive – how­ever if you ac­ci­den­tally drop it you must throw it away im­me­di­ately as it will have col­lected dirt off the ground and may put fresh scratches on your car.

Next up is cut­ting and pol­ish­ing the ve­hi­cle. Most people have seen ro­tary elec­tric pol­ish­ers, how­ever I strongly rec­om­mend in­vest­ing a lit­tle more in a dual ac­tion pol­isher. Ro­tary pol­ish­ers can be very harm­ful if you are not ex­pe­ri­enced, as they are heavy to con­trol and tend to burn the fin­ish and bite on edges. Use a good qual­ity pol­ish. As you move over the car with the pol­isher there is no need to press hard – just move it around gen­tly and it will do the work it­self. Take time with each panel – it may take around four hours to do the whole car prop­erly.

I then ap­ply A-Glaze SMR to get rid of those re­ally deep holo­grams and swirl marks for a per­fect, mir­ror like fin­ish. Ap­ply this by hand with a mi­crofiber ap­pli­ca­tor pad and buff off again with a mi­crofiber cloth. Af­ter you have fin­ished this step, wash and dry the car again to get rid of all the pol­ish dust, in­clud­ing from around edges of doors, pan­els and lights. It is im­por­tant that the ve­hi­cle is to­tally dust free and clean be­fore the sealant is put on.

The sealant is the layer that pro­tects your paint fin­ish from get­ting all that same dirt, grime and scratch­ing on it again. All you need is a mi­crofiber ap­pli­ca­tor pad and A-Glaze sealant. It’s an in­cred­i­ble prod­uct and you use very lit­tle of it – it’s just like oil on the sur­face of the car. Ap­ply to the car top to bot­tom, and if in any doubt go over again with a sec­ond layer. It should look like a haze over the paint­work once ap­plied. It is very im­por­tant to leave the sealant to set­tle now for at least four hours in a dust-free garage en­vi­ron­ment.

Fi­nally, once the time has elapsed, you will need wa­ter in a clean spray mist container and mi­crofiber cloths and buff the ve­hi­cle top to bot­tom, spray­ing mist onto the pan­els be­fore buff­ing. The wa­ter ac­ti­vates the sealant and gives it that gloss that you want. Buff the car to a per­fect shine, swap­ping cloths as they be­come too wet. Once you have fin­ished, stand back and en­joy the stun­ning, deep shine of your ve­hi­cle’s paint­work which is now pro­tected for 1-2 years, when you need only re-ap­ply the sealant.

The best thing is that now that you are fin­ished you can en­joy driv­ing your car with­out worry – all you need to do when it gets dusty or dirty is to wash with A-Glaze sham­poo or wipe the ve­hi­cle down with A-Glaze WaterFree Dry Wash. All the build-up, tar, bugs, dirt, will slide right off as the layer of sealant fully pro­tects your ve­hi­cle’s paint. These prod­ucts are de­signed not to strip the sealant off as they work.

I’m al­ways happy to hear from you and an­swer any ques­tions you may have, and I’m ex­cited to share more Car Care tips with you next time!


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