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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Wash, Wax, Detailing and Cosmetic protection/repairs > Detailing 101: Common Question and Answers, What and Where to buy stuff + Technique



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      12-22-2006, 06:39 PM   #111
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DavidN, its me again. I just came back from CT. I was looking for 100% cotton Simoniz chenille mitts. The one you use. I could not find any in like 4 stores. Whenever I ask someone about it they where like . You said that Viking wash mitts are very good but I can't find them anywhere. I am thinking about ordering Meguiars Deep Pile Chenille Wash Mitt online. Are they any good? I also will order some Klasse, P21s and some quality MF towels online and start some serious detailing
BTW, how many drying towels, sizes 24x32 or 16x16 do I need to dry whole car and how many regular buffing towels do I need?. Also how many different applicators shoud I use to apply Klasse twins and P21s? Is one applicator enough for one process?
To be honest I am also thinking about PC polisher for those swirls that I made using sponge and for polishing and buffing (klasse twins and P21s) in general. However my car is just 4 months old and I don't know if PC is overkill at this point. I am scared to use the machine with my new car. Should I do it by hand or invest in PC? Is there any way I can burn the paint or take off the clear coat using PC? I see people using PC on this forum all the time for their detailing even for their new bimmers.
Thanks for help

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      12-23-2006, 12:12 PM   #112
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bimmer
DavidN, its me again. I just came back from CT. I was looking for 100% cotton Simoniz chenille mitts. The one you use. I could not find any in like 4 stores. Whenever I ask someone about it they where like . You said that Viking wash mitts are very good but I can't find them anywhere. I am thinking about ordering Meguiars Deep Pile Chenille Wash Mitt online. Are they any good? I also will order some Klasse, P21s and some quality MF towels online and start some serious detailing
BTW, how many drying towels, sizes 24x32 or 16x16 do I need to dry whole car and how many regular buffing towels do I need?. Also how many different applicators shoud I use to apply Klasse twins and P21s? Is one applicator enough for one process?
To be honest I am also thinking about PC polisher for those swirls that I made using sponge and for polishing and buffing (klasse twins and P21s) in general. However my car is just 4 months old and I don't know if PC is overkill at this point. I am scared to use the machine with my new car. Should I do it by hand or invest in PC? Is there any way I can burn the paint or take off the clear coat using PC? I see people using PC on this forum all the time for their detailing even for their new bimmers.
Thanks for help

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No worries, ask as many questions as you need to. No bother at all.

I need to edit the wording in my original post. The wash mits at CT are actually called sheepskin. This is it:

http://www.canadiantire.ca/browse/pr...=1166894439493

They should have this mitt at any CT store.

For drying your car, one 24x36 waffle weave drying towel and one regular MF to follow up with should be enough.

In general, when you put in an order for towels, get about 15 regular MF towels, and 2 drying towels. If the store you are buying from from has extra plush MF towels, buy a couple of those as well. They are good for quick detailing.

For applicators, you will need one for each product (AIO, SG, P21s).

The PC is safe. You will not burn your paint. Have no fears. However, just get your feet wet for now with claying and klasse-ing. You can buy a PC in the spring (if you still want one) when the weather is better for detailing.
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      12-24-2006, 08:25 PM   #113
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Hi David,
This a great topic, I have learned a few more things and am ready to switch over to Klasse exterior products. We use their interior detailer and love it, since it doesn't leave behind any shiny residue.
For probably the last 10 years, we've used random orbitals and various wax combos. Our favorite by far is the 3 step Meguiar's. Our cars look great and even after years people still think they're new! (we are pretty anal about detailing top to bottom and keeping the interior clean)
So if Klasse AIO and SG are far superior, I can't imagine what results we'll get on our new Bimmer! We are also going to try claying for the first time, using your instructions.
Some questions about applying Klasse using an orbital
1. we've never used foam applicators. We've always used a thin cotton applicator (which we dispose of & replace with new after 1/2 car application) followed by a terry buffing pad for removal of product, (which we switch out for a clean one after 1/2 car removal -these we will wash and reuse for next time).
2. repeat step 1 with second/3rd product application
3. Buff entire car w/ orbital when done (after carnuba) w/ MF pad

Is it necessary to use the foam applicator for AIO? Foam pads came with the kit I ordered but for hand use. I think the orbital would increase the effectiveness of AIO. Also, would you recommend using the orbital to remove the product as we usually do? If so, terry or MF pad?
The sealant I plan on doing by hand, as it is a wipe on wipe off, acc. to everyone's experience, so I'm not too worried about that. But I will use the orbital to apply pure carnuba and buff after 3 SG coats.
Thanks and Happy Holidays!
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      12-26-2006, 10:03 PM   #114
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Quote:
Originally Posted by klinkerklu
Hi David,
This a great topic, I have learned a few more things and am ready to switch over to Klasse exterior products. We use their interior detailer and love it, since it doesn't leave behind any shiny residue.
For probably the last 10 years, we've used random orbitals and various wax combos. Our favorite by far is the 3 step Meguiar's. Our cars look great and even after years people still think they're new! (we are pretty anal about detailing top to bottom and keeping the interior clean)
So if Klasse AIO and SG are far superior, I can't imagine what results we'll get on our new Bimmer! We are also going to try claying for the first time, using your instructions.
Some questions about applying Klasse using an orbital
1. we've never used foam applicators. We've always used a thin cotton applicator (which we dispose of & replace with new after 1/2 car application) followed by a terry buffing pad for removal of product, (which we switch out for a clean one after 1/2 car removal -these we will wash and reuse for next time).
2. repeat step 1 with second/3rd product application
3. Buff entire car w/ orbital when done (after carnuba) w/ MF pad

Is it necessary to use the foam applicator for AIO? Foam pads came with the kit I ordered but for hand use. I think the orbital would increase the effectiveness of AIO. Also, would you recommend using the orbital to remove the product as we usually do? If so, terry or MF pad?
The sealant I plan on doing by hand, as it is a wipe on wipe off, acc. to everyone's experience, so I'm not too worried about that. But I will use the orbital to apply pure carnuba and buff after 3 SG coats.
Thanks and Happy Holidays!
If you are using an orbital other than a PC, than just apply the AIO by hand. Most orbitals are weak and will bog down as soon as they touch the paint rendering them useless. As for the pads and bonnets you are using, I can't speak to them as I have not seen them for myself. If you have a PC, then invest in quality foam pads. AIO will benefit from PC application.

As for removal, do it by hand. It's so easy there is no need to use a machine.
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      12-27-2006, 04:14 PM   #115
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidN
Waffle Weave MF towels are great for drying. I used to use Terry towels but prefer MF. As long as your Terry towels are 100% cotton (including the backing - which can be polyester on some "100% cotton" towels sold) then you will be fine using those if you like them.
What about the Absorber? This ok, or no?
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      12-28-2006, 10:40 AM   #116
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What about the Absorber? This ok, or no?
Absorber is old school, but it's fine and will do the job.
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      01-09-2007, 11:16 AM   #117
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used the AIO and SG this weekend. AIO went on great and looked great. SG was almost impossible to get off. I think I was probably using too much or my towel was too damp. I'm going to attempt again by using AIO to remove all of the products and then start from scratch.

I use Griots boar's hair brush and love it. It is easy to use and seems to do an excellent job. I also really like their microfiber cloths and towels. I also highly recommend their clay and speedshine.
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      01-09-2007, 04:38 PM   #118
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Originally Posted by jase700
used the AIO and SG this weekend. AIO went on great and looked great. SG was almost impossible to get off. I think I was probably using too much or my towel was too damp. I'm going to attempt again by using AIO to remove all of the products and then start from scratch.

I use Griots boar's hair brush and love it. It is easy to use and seems to do an excellent job. I also really like their microfiber cloths and towels. I also highly recommend their clay and speedshine.
Did you apply and remove Klasse SG as per my instructions in the 101, or did you follow the instructions that came with the your Klasse SG?

If the latter, then I am not surprised you had problems. If you apply klasse to the whole car and let it dry before buffing, it will turn to glue and be almost impossible to get off. Use the wipe on wipe off technique in the 101. It will make SG so much easier to use.
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      03-18-2007, 02:37 AM   #119
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Hi DaveN,

Just discovered this thread. Amazing, thank you! I have a couple questions I don't think were asked before (my apologies if they were).

First, I picked up a complimentary bucket full of Mothers stuff at a track days a few months ago. It's all labeled "Mothers California Gold." Here's the complete list:
  • Car Wash
  • Ultimate Wax System - Phase 1 - Pre-Wax Cleaner
  • Ultimate Wax System - Phase 2 - Sealer & Glaze
  • Ultimate Wax System - Phase 3 - Pure Carnuba Wax (for clearcoats)
  • All Wheel
  • Clay Bar

From your original post, you seem to like the Car Wash and Clay Bar, but you prefer other products (Klass and Zaino) for cleaning/polishing/waxing.

I used the 3-phase system on my Prelude just before selling it and was really surprised by the results (in a good way). I didn't use a machine--just clean cotton shop towels and elbow grease. But that was a nine-year-old car, so I can't say my expectations were super high. I was just happy it was shiny and looked years newer.

So, my questions:

1. Is Mothers actually bad or is it just not your first choice? In other words, is this stuff such utter crap that I should toss it? Will it ruin my finish?

2. Similar question about the Porter Cable Random Orbital Polisher (PC). Will I ruin my finish if I don't use one, or will it just look that much better if I do?

3. What do you recommend if I don't have time to wash my car, but it gets something nasty on it that needs to be removed immediately? Usually, this means bird droppings. Should I still use 3M or Turtle Wax bug/tar remover or would something else be better? Should I apply with microfiber towel?

4. The other thing my car collects is dust (the curse of Jet Black). Are car dusters a safe way to remove dust between washings? If yes, any recommendations?


Thanks!

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      03-21-2007, 12:12 PM   #120
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danthman View Post
So, my questions:

1. Is Mothers actually bad or is it just not your first choice? In other words, is this stuff such utter crap that I should toss it? Will it ruin my finish?

2. Similar question about the Porter Cable Random Orbital Polisher (PC). Will I ruin my finish if I don't use one, or will it just look that much better if I do?

3. What do you recommend if I don't have time to wash my car, but it gets something nasty on it that needs to be removed immediately? Usually, this means bird droppings. Should I still use 3M or Turtle Wax bug/tar remover or would something else be better? Should I apply with microfiber towel?

4. The other thing my car collects is dust (the curse of Jet Black). Are car dusters a safe way to remove dust between washings? If yes, any recommendations?


Thanks!

-Dan
Hi Dan;

1. Mothers is not bad at all. I think Mothers makes very good locally available products. In general, what I like better about Klasse and Zaino is that they have better durability then a regular store bought carnuba wax (including mothers).

2. You don't need a porter cable. a PC is only necessary if you have swirls in your paint that require removal. Reason being, you will need the power of the machine to remove said swirls.

3. Tar and bug remover is a little harsh for removing bird droppings. I'd suggest using a quick detailer like the mothers California gold QD. Spray onto bird dropping. let soak for a few seconds, then try to blot it off (as opposed to rubbing).

4. You can use a california car duster for this. However, only use the duster on your car if it has not been rained on. If you use the duster on your car after it has rained you will create swirls. This is because the water will 'cake' the dust on and make it harder. Rubbing a duster over the hardened dust will cause some micromarring.

I hope this helps.
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      04-02-2007, 06:49 PM   #121
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Thank you much for your how-to. Very very informative, and your answers to other's questions are great as well. I have a couple of questions too.

1. I purchased the different pads from pakshak,when and how should they be used.

2. I purchased the different towels stated in an earlier post; what is the purpose of each type?

3. So the only time to be applying any pressure is when claying?

4. What is the proper motion for buffing? Do i buff by hand or using the pc?

5. is it necessary to to use IP on a brand new car?

Thank your in advance for your help.

Last edited by richifever; 04-02-2007 at 10:44 PM.
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      04-18-2007, 12:26 AM   #122
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DavidN:
You are probably sick of hearing this, but here goes - THIS IS AN AMAZING POST. Thank you SOOOO much for this.. if only I had read it in time.. So here is my situation, I was hoping to get you feedback.

I have a '07 328 coupe. It is Monaco Blue, and took delivery on 2/2, with about 3K miles on it, to give you an idea of exposure to road etc.. I plan on keeping this car for another 18 months (open to air parking), so I dont think I will go for a PC...

I was hoping for a low maintenence good looking maintenence schedule as i am what most people woudl say "lazy", but still want a nice shiny new looking ar, doesnt everyone?

I took very good care of it, only taking it to the touchless car washes till I made a blunder today of taking it to a very reputable hand car wash (recommended by the local BMW center!) - you guessed it, they left swirl marks on my car!!!

Now I am confused apart from the weekly wash (using Z7) shoudl I:
Wax monthly schedule OR Use a sealent not having to worry about having to wax very often OR Both (keeping in mind that I only have the car for a short time).

Is a polish required/useful especially since I will not have a PC, so the swirls wont go. Will the Z-5 take care of these minor swirls, specially since they are a day old?

If I am to do just the sealent, so I dont have to wax so often, Is this OK:
1) Dawn (w/ ur washing method)
2) claying (NO experience - is it even required on a newish car?)
3) 3 layers of Klasse/Z2 PRO (please chose one for me)

All followup washes using Z-7 and waxes using s100

If I require polish shuld I just follow your steps w/o the PC - or wait for 6/7 months to pass b4 I do this?

Thanks.
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      04-19-2007, 12:13 PM   #123
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Quote:
Originally Posted by richifever View Post
Thank you much for your how-to. Very very informative, and your answers to other's questions are great as well. I have a couple of questions too.

1. I purchased the different pads from pakshak,when and how should they be used.

2. I purchased the different towels stated in an earlier post; what is the purpose of each type?

3. So the only time to be applying any pressure is when claying?

4. What is the proper motion for buffing? Do i buff by hand or using the pc?

5. is it necessary to to use IP on a brand new car?

Thank your in advance for your help.
Oops. Looks like I missed this post!

1. Use the cutting pad(don't know the colour of Pak-Shak's pads off the top of my head) in conjunction with a cutting polish like menzerna IP to remove swirls. Follow up with a polishing pad and a product like Zaino ZPC or Menzerna FP2 to remove any haze and restore full gloss to the finish. Use a finishing pad to apply any liguid waxes or sealants (I always do these by hand)

2. Walffle weave towels are good for drying your car. Fluffier MF towels are good for quick detailing And the normal size/plushness MF towels are good for removing waxes and sealants.

3. No, don't apply pressure when claying. Glide the clay on the finish and let it pick up the contamination.

4. When you say buffing, I assume you mean removing product residue from your paint that you have just applied. I always remove any residue by hand. No need to use the PC. I always wipe in a front to back, back to front motion.

5. If your new car has deep swirls that require removal, then yes, IP will be needed. However, if the finish is already in excellent shape then Zaino ZPC is all you will need.

Hope this helps.
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      04-19-2007, 12:22 PM   #124
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manxs View Post
DavidN:
You are probably sick of hearing this, but here goes - THIS IS AN AMAZING POST. Thank you SOOOO much for this.. if only I had read it in time.. So here is my situation, I was hoping to get you feedback.

I have a '07 328 coupe. It is Monaco Blue, and took delivery on 2/2, with about 3K miles on it, to give you an idea of exposure to road etc.. I plan on keeping this car for another 18 months (open to air parking), so I dont think I will go for a PC...

I was hoping for a low maintenence good looking maintenence schedule as i am what most people woudl say "lazy", but still want a nice shiny new looking ar, doesnt everyone?

I took very good care of it, only taking it to the touchless car washes till I made a blunder today of taking it to a very reputable hand car wash (recommended by the local BMW center!) - you guessed it, they left swirl marks on my car!!!

Now I am confused apart from the weekly wash (using Z7) shoudl I:
Wax monthly schedule OR Use a sealent not having to worry about having to wax very often OR Both (keeping in mind that I only have the car for a short time).

Is a polish required/useful especially since I will not have a PC, so the swirls wont go. Will the Z-5 take care of these minor swirls, specially since they are a day old?

If I am to do just the sealent, so I dont have to wax so often, Is this OK:
1) Dawn (w/ ur washing method)
2) claying (NO experience - is it even required on a newish car?)
3) 3 layers of Klasse/Z2 PRO (please chose one for me)

All followup washes using Z-7 and waxes using s100

If I require polish shuld I just follow your steps w/o the PC - or wait for 6/7 months to pass b4 I do this?

Thanks.
Thanks for the kind words. Based on your situation, the easiest waxing schedule/process for you would be:

First time detail:
1. Wash with Z7 (no need for dawn)
2. Clay (optional but I would do it personally)
3. ZAIO (will clean the paint much better than dawn)
4. Z5Pro - one layer (since you have a dark colour, Z5 will be better than Z2)

Monthly/Weekly maintenance:
Wash every 2-4 weeks (you can wash more often if you like, but you said your were lazy! )
Every month after a wash throw on some Z8 (takes 5 minutes)

After 6 months:
Apply another layer of Z5 after a wash (will take 20 minutes)

After 12 months:
Repeat first time detail

Following years:
Repeat year one process

That's it! Since you won't be keeping the car long and you don't want to invest a lot of time, then there is no need for a PC or polishes. Just stick to the above and your car will look good!
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      04-19-2007, 01:04 PM   #125
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Thanks for your help David.
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      04-22-2007, 01:52 PM   #126
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DavidN: You are the MAN! Thanks again !!
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      04-23-2007, 12:40 AM   #127
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidN View Post
Thanks for the kind words. Based on your situation, the easiest waxing schedule/process for you would be:

First time detail:
1. Wash with Z7 (no need for dawn)
2. Clay (optional but I would do it personally)
3. ZAIO (will clean the paint much better than dawn)
4. Z5Pro - one layer (since you have a dark colour, Z5 will be better than Z2)

Monthly/Weekly maintenance:
Wash every 2-4 weeks (you can wash more often if you like, but you said your were lazy! )
Every month after a wash throw on some Z8 (takes 5 minutes)

After 6 months:
Apply another layer of Z5 after a wash (will take 20 minutes)

After 12 months:
Repeat first time detail

Following years:
Repeat year one process

That's it! Since you won't be keeping the car long and you don't want to invest a lot of time, then there is no need for a PC or polishes. Just stick to the above and your car will look good!
Great answers I've been looking for for my own concerns!

One question though, is the ZAIO step necessary since it won't be used after a year according to your method...? and so you're saying that Z-8 after a wash/dry is all you need for regular washes?

I'm leasing for 24 months only so time/money should be kept at minimum but still achieveing the best possible shine. Thanks !!!
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      04-23-2007, 04:59 PM   #128
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long term paint protection

Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidN View Post
Thanks for the kind words. Based on your situation, the easiest waxing schedule/process for you would be:

First time detail:
1. Wash with Z7 (no need for dawn)
2. Clay (optional but I would do it personally)
3. ZAIO (will clean the paint much better than dawn)
4. Z5Pro - one layer (since you have a dark colour, Z5 will be better than Z2)

Monthly/Weekly maintenance:
Wash every 2-4 weeks (you can wash more often if you like, but you said your were lazy! )
Every month after a wash throw on some Z8 (takes 5 minutes)

After 6 months:
Apply another layer of Z5 after a wash (will take 20 minutes)

After 12 months:
Repeat first time detail

Following years:
Repeat year one process

That's it! Since you won't be keeping the car long and you don't want to invest a lot of time, then there is no need for a PC or polishes. Just stick to the above and your car will look good!
Hi DavidN - I do NOT care at all about shine. I do not care for the glassy look, but I cannot canuba wax every month (especially during winter) so I want a synthetic protectant. I plan to keep my 2007 328i sedan for 10-12 years, driving daily, no garage parking. Color is Sparkling Graphite (should have purchased titanium silver for long term durability - darn). I only want to preserve and protect the car as well as possible for as long as possible. Should I follow the same recipe that you recommended for "manxs"? He is only keeping his 328i for 18 months? Thanks MUCH. Your posts are truly phenomenal for this community!
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      04-24-2007, 06:43 AM   #129
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Originally Posted by louIstat View Post
Great answers I've been looking for for my own concerns!

One question though, is the ZAIO step necessary since it won't be used after a year according to your method...? and so you're saying that Z-8 after a wash/dry is all you need for regular washes?

I'm leasing for 24 months only so time/money should be kept at minimum but still achieveing the best possible shine. Thanks !!!
Yup, ZAIO is needed. I'll tell you why. Not only will it clean your paint but it also allows your Z2/Z5 to bond to the paint. It's like a bonding agent. Without it, the durability of your Z2/5 will suffer.

In terms of Z8, you don't need it, but it is a nice product that will rejuvenate your existing Zaino layer(s). Using it once a month, maybe every couple of months as well, is all you really need.

Hope this helps.
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      04-24-2007, 07:00 AM   #130
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Hi DavidN - I do NOT care at all about shine. I do not care for the glassy look, but I cannot canuba wax every month (especially during winter) so I want a synthetic protectant. I plan to keep my 2007 328i sedan for 10-12 years, driving daily, no garage parking. Color is Sparkling Graphite (should have purchased titanium silver for long term durability - darn). I only want to preserve and protect the car as well as possible for as long as possible. Should I follow the same recipe that you recommended for "manxs"? He is only keeping his 328i for 18 months? Thanks MUCH. Your posts are truly phenomenal for this community!
The method I outlined for manxs will work almost as well for you too. The goal of that method is to keep the car looking good for as long as you own it without slaving over it every day.

The only thing I will say is that for a long term car, you will see some degradation in the condition of the paint (I'd guess-timate after about 5 years) if you don't machine polish once a year. For manxs it's OK because he won't have the car long. It's different story for you.

Ultimately though, if you are happy with the way the car looks as time passes, then just stick to the above. You can always expand your details to include machine polishing in future years if you feel it is needed.

And thanks for the kind words. I'm glad you find my posts helpful.
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      05-19-2007, 06:47 PM   #131
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what are some recommended products for interior cleaning for the leather?
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      05-20-2007, 01:06 PM   #132
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what are some recommended products for interior cleaning for the leather?
Zaino Z-9 and Z-10.

http://www.zainostore.com/Merchant2/...ory_Code=Zaino
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