Every car owner would love to keep their car in that pristine fresh-from-the-showroom condition. But it takes time and effort (or money) to maintain it anywhere close.
If you don’t want to be be forking out on taking your car to a professional detailer every couple of months or so, and you don’t have the time to painstakingly clean, polish and wax on a regular basis (a good few hour’s work to do it properly), what do you do? Stick to a regular wash regime and resign yourself to the fact that your bodywork’s best days are behind it?
While nothing beats a complete detailing job, there are ways you can give your vehicle a quick spruce up that will leave it gleaming and shining like new again, at least for a while. Car finishing is the final stage of the detailing process, the part when you apply sealant and / or wax to protect your newly polished paintwork but also to give it that final rich glossy shine that will really bring out the depth and clarity of the colour.
Again, finishing works best as the final stage of a full detail. But you can cut corners and use some finishing techniques (and products) as quick wins to make your car gleam without having to put in the hours of hard work.
The effects won’t last as long, and you may just be masking underlying defects in your paintwork rather than putting them right. But all the same, when you’re not blessed with huge amounts of spare time, the following quick wins are handy hacks to know. .
If you haven’t already discovered quick detailer spray, now is the time to get on board with it. Thousands of DIY home detailers swear by it, and with good reason. It’s magical stuff.
Quick detailer spray is designed to prolong the effects of sealants and waxes. Whenever you apply a finishing product to your car, there’s a limited period of time it will provide protection for. Plus, that gorgeous glossy finish will start to fade.
Quick detailer spray revives the finish without having to go through the full process of applying a sealant or wax again. The condition is, you do still need to have a layer of finishing product still on the bodywork for it to work, so don’t leave it too long. What quick detailer spray does is apply a thin layer of wax over the top to pep up the shiny effect again. With easy spray-on application plus a fine microfibre cloth to wipe, it’s a job that can be done in the time it would take you to wash and rinse your car.
If quick detailer sprays are designed to provide a top up finish to keep a detailed car looking pristine for longer, all-in-one polishes go a step further. Like all polishes, their primary purpose is to provide enough abrasion to allow you to buff out light scratches, marks and other defects. But unlike standard polishes and cutting compounds, they also include sealant and wax.
In effect, all-in-one polish gives you a one-step detailing option. No, it won’t be as thorough or effective as a full detailing job. But yes, it will save you a lot of time. Give your car a thorough wash, rinse and dry and then apply an all-in-one polish as you would a wax or compound by hand. Yes, it takes a little elbow grease. But in that one step, you will correct and fill in defects, apply a protective layer of sealant and provide a glossy finish that will make your bodywork standout again.
Finally, if you are aware of defects on your car’s paintwork but don’t have the time for a thorough detail, glazes provide a stunning stop gap. Whereas polishes correct swirl marks, scratches and other types of marring by physically altering the surface of your paintwork, glazes simply fill them in. In doing so, they also provide a deep, wet, glossy finish which is highly desirable.
Although it’s recommended that you get defects in your paintwork properly addressed for the long term good of your vehicle, you may well find you love the glaze effect so much you come back to it time and time again.
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