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Meguiar's Offers Steps to Bring Back Showroom Shine

Winter weather can take its toll on automotive paint, often leaving a car's finish looking dull and damaged. The arrival of spring, however, is the perfect opportunity to wipe away road salt damage and other contaminants, bringing automotive finishes back to showroom condition.

Step 1 — Washing

  • Thoroughly wash vehicle to remove all surface dirt and debris.

  • Use high-quality, clean wash mitts — one for the top surfaces and another for the lower panels and wheels.

  • Never use dish soap because it strips wax protection and dries out the paint surface.

  • On final rinse, use a stream of water instead of a spray. This will allow the water to sheet off and reduce drying time.

  • When drying the vehicle, always use a 100 percent cotton terry cloth towel or high quality microfiber towel.

  • Once the vehicle is dry, examine the finish in both direct sunlight and artificial light to detect inconsistencies in the paint. In addition, feel the finish with the palm of the hand to detect imperfections that are not always visible. An ideal automotive finish should feel like glass.

Step 2 — Cleaning

  • If the surface is neglected and has imperfections, it is very important to clean and prepare it for polishing and waxing.

  • To remove surface defects, use the least abrasive method.

  • Use a clear coat-safe product — traditional rubbing compounds can be very harmful to the paint surface & should be avoided.

  • If necessary, seek the help of a professional who has the tools and skills to remove serious paint defects.

Step 3 — Polishing

  • Polishing is an optional step, which is often used on dark colored vehicles to bring out the ultimate shine.

  • In order to create long-lasting high gloss, follow a polish with a coat of wax.

  • A pure polish is great for people who like to polish their cars often since there is no chance of build up.

  • Unlike a wax, a pure polish is the best choice for "fresh" paint because it allows the paint to continue the curing process.

Step 4 — Waxing

  • Always work in the shade and on a cool surface.

  • Apply waxes in a thin, even coat for best results.

  • Use a clean foam applicator or Dual Action Polisher for waxing

  • Apply wax to the entire vehicle, then come back and begin to remove the product.

  • Always use a high quality 100% cotton terry cloth towel or microfiber towel for removing waxes.

Step 5 — Instant Maintenance

  • Immediately remove any harmful contaminants, like water spots & fresh bird droppings, with an instant detailing product like Meguiar's Quik Detailer, before surface damage occurs.

  • To keep vehicles looking like they were just waxed, use Meguiar's Quik Wax for an instant boost in color and protection on an as-needed basis.

  • When products like these become slow to wipe off, it is a sign that it is time to re-wax the vehicle.

Since 1901, Meguiar's technical experts have worked hand-in-hand with car and automotive paint manufacturers around the world to create highly specialized surface care products. As part of its passionate support of automotive enthusiasts, collectors and the hobby, Meguiar's created "Car Crazy Television." For more information, visit Meguiar's at, and