Whether for your personal enjoyment or preserving its value, you should keep your collector’s car in great shape. Cleaning your luxury vehicle or vintage car is crucial to maintain its dazzling appearance. It is important, though, to make sure you’re properly cleaning your car so you don’t accidentally cause damage.
Know Your Car Well
Before even touching the surface of your car, you should examine every inch of the body from bumper to bumper. Do you know what condition your car is currently in? Identify any missing paint, rust, surface damage, or fading. Don’t forget to check the door frames, hood, wheel wells, and other hidden crevices.
Also, determine whether your vehicle has a clear coat or just a traditional coat of unprotected paint. Why is this information important? It will tell you how to best clean your vehicle and if any restoration is needed beforehand.
Fix Any Issues First
You should attend to any blemishes on your vehicle first before washing it. This includes sanding off and stopping any oxidation, popping out any dents, and using a gunk remover to wipe away grease, sap, tar, or other tough adhesives. If your classic car has major surface damage, you’ll want to consider taking it to a paint and restoration shop for professional care before proceeding.
Use the Right Product
The wrong cleaning products can spoil your car. Use a soap that’s specifically made to be gentle on vintage car paint jobs; it should be non-abrasive and pH neutral. Use a soft microfiber towel or sheepskin washing mitt; sponges can retain debris and scrape the paint. Use a dedicated wheel cleaner and soft-bristled brushes for the tires, spokes, and hubcaps.
Never take your classic car through an automatic car wash! It’s always safer to do the work by hand than trust automated machinery to not damage your car.
Where to Work
Choosing the right location and conditions for your cleaning job is important. Avoid direct sunlight by working somewhere shaded. Don’t work on a day that’s significantly hot or cold. Overcast, moderate-temperature days are best. You want to have the chance to dry your antique car by hand before water spots form. If possible, also park somewhere away from traffic and where there is water drainage.
As you wash the car, start from the top and work your way down to the bumpers. Take your time so you don’t miss any spots. Rinse thoroughly to remove any soap suds before moving on to the wheels. Finally, finish with the undercarriage.
Don’t Forget to Polish
Have any lingering problem spots on your car? You may want to use a clay bar to remove any particles that stick to the cracks and crevices on the surface. Use a fine-grade bar and gentle lubricant after drying the car thoroughly.
Afterward, give your vintage or premium vehicle some protection by using a high-quality wax, polish, and even a ceramic coating.
Store It Safely
Once you’re done cleaning your car, store it somewhere with temperature regulation and wrapped in a breathable cover. You don’t want to do all that work just to leave your car vulnerable to the elements.
It’s also important to choose the right timing to wash your car. Clean it thoroughly before taking it out in public to a car show or long-distance joyride. Also, wash it again afterward to remove any contaminants from the surface before they have a chance to fester.
Want to add more vintage or exotic cars to your collection? Show Cars of Boca Raton can locate and acquire your chosen models for you from anywhere in the continental USA. Contact us to start your search.