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Although washing your car seems simple enough, many people don’t realize that most of the scratches on your paint are created during improper washing. If you’re interested in learning how a pro detailer does it, you can check out our Autoblog Details series right here. The video above is part of that series and features AMMO’s Larry Kosilla as he goes through the 10 best tools for washing your ride safely. We’ve included links to the products below.
A bug sponge like this one is designed to remove stuck contaminants like bugs or tar stains without damaging your paint. You’ll probably only want to use this one when absolutely necessary, but it’s a great secret weapon to have. It has a high-density core that’s covered by microfiber mesh, making it great for attacking that nasty debris that can build up after a few long drives.
The waffle weave towel is a specialized kind of microfiber towel excellent for cleaning glass. This one has over 300,000 fibers per square inch and is made to withstand hundreds of washings. Make sure not to use your glass towels on the paint!
With this product, according pro detailer Larry Kosilla, “The trick is to clay your paint during the wash process to utilize the water and soap lubrication already present on your paint.” However, you don’t want to use this material on every wash, only when your paint is rough to the touch. This Griot’s Garage option provides 8 oz. of clay for use.
Lambswool mitts lift dirt away from the surface of your paint rather than dragging it across, minimizing scratches that might occur by using a standard sponge or rag. Keep in mind, even though this mitt was made to get soaked, you’ll always want to air dry this product.
Even after drying your car with microfiber towels after a wash, often there’s still water left over in places like your mirrors, lights, door jams, and other hard-to-reach crevices. Compressed air or electric blowers like this one are great for blowing the water out of those spots to be more easily dried. This “electric air duster” can blow at 67.5 mph, has a 10 foot long power cord and only weighs 1.9 lbs.
Wheel woolies make it much easier to clean your rims. Most of them have plastic handles to help prevent scratches on the wheel, and this one is no exception. This particular brush uses polypropylene fibers and is suitable for wheel gaps larger than 2“.
A foam cannon can attach directly to your hose and is used to spray a layer of super sudsy foam onto your car to help gently remove some of the heavy dirt prior to hand washing. This foam blaster is lightweight and holds 32 fluid ounces. Also, potentially most importantly, foam blasters are just plain fun!
This is one of the simplest tools you can use for washing your car and also one of the most effective. Many people use only one bucket for their wash, the same one that holds all of the soapy, dirty water, just getting re-used every time you dunk your dirty sponge or towel into it. It’s often much more effective to use two (or even three) buckets when washing and dedicating one solely to rinsing. You’ll want to make sure the rinse bucket only contains water and no soap, and of course, dunk your dirty mitt into the rinse bucket to rinse off the grit before going back to the soap bucket to continue your wash.
A grit guard is a simple plastic accessory you place at the bottom of your washing buckets to allow the dirt and grit from dirty sponges to pass through and get trapped at the bottom. This minimizes the chance that all of the dirt you just washed off of your paint gets reintroduced back onto it.
This washboard attaches to your grit guard and is yet another layer of protection against dirt and grit. While dunking your mitt or sponge into the bucket, you can use this washboard to scrub it clean before continuing the job.
Last but not least, one of the most important tools you’ll need for any wash is the microfiber towel. Simple. Effective. Affordable. You’d be hard-pressed to find a more useful accessory for keeping your vehicle clean.