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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just saw this: http://www.uk-mkivs.net/forums/82146/ShowPost.aspx

Three hours? [:|] Am I doing something wrong because when I last cleaned my car proper it took me three days. How long on average do people spend in a cleaning session?

If I'm going out in a hurry, I can just about get it down to two hours (shampoo and dry body and just the outside of my rims and spokes, quick refresher of polish/glaze on the front end) but that still leaves loads of niggling things that I can't get off the back of my mind. I'll be constantly looking at my watch, and thinking, "Oh, just one more task..." then perhaps whip out various products and do a little bit more then start cursing that I shouldn't try to clean my car on the same day I plan to do anything else at all.

A full paint polish and glaze takes me a whole day. If I'm doing the wheels properly, that's jacking up time and full under-arch scrub, and brake cleaner on the brakes, wishbones, ARB (polished ARB ends are lovely), wash springs, blah... more than half a day.
 

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Ah bit shium we know you are one of the s elect breed of obsessives
about car cleanliness, and sadly we must bow to you because quite
frankly, we're just not that good and probably not quite so dedicated.

If it's freezing cold and I'm tired, an hour and a half suffices to do
a decent external wash no wax and wheels/arches/etc. On a good
day like back in summer when I got it 4-5 hours has been known.
Looking back, to me, that's a ridiculous amount of time to spend
washing my car though, if you know what I mean??

Three days - true dedication mate [y]

C
 

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I can take 2 days, but in this weather your looking at 2 hours for me!
But the car is ready for winter now, so only needs a wash and topup wax!
 

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Shiuming, I have learnt some techniques from my friend who's a car valetor by proffesion.

U need to have the right tools too - a power jet washer, pumping
out heated water helps 10 fold. U need to have the correct
chemicals/products too.

Wheels. Dry, spray them with TFR (Traffic Film Remover). Spray
the whole wheel using a plant sprayer. Also spray under the wheel
arches, spray the shocks/springs, brake cailipers. Once u've
sprayed all four wheels, then jet wash off the wheels and arches/brake
calipers etc.

Push the car forwards 4 foot. Now jet wash all the wheels again (ie the bits u missed).

this should take u 5-10 mins max!

Wet the car down.

Wash the car with shampoo and sponge.

Rinse car.

Dry car - use a synthetic chamois, or microfibre drying towel. Never used water blades. Dont believe in them.

That lot should take u around 30 mins max.

Claybar+wax - well how long this takes, really depends on the car's
condition, and/or your patience! P21s wax is very
easy to work with. it sets quickly, but is very easy to remove.

Autoglym waxes/glazes are much harder to work with in comparison.
Removal takes alot of elbow grease. And the results aren't always
representative of effort put in..

Dress the tyres - I use a spray type dressing. Hold spray with
one hand, hold a clean damp cloth over the wheel spokes. Spray
tyre in small amounts, move around tyre, and cover the overspray using
the other hand/cloth. This prevents tyre dressing sticking to the
wheels/spokes.

Time to dress tyres - 2 mins.

Inside car -

It helps immensely to have leather seats.. Hoovering is much
simpler for a start. So is cleaning/feeding them.
Fabric seats just get dirtier and dirtier over time, unless u give them
a regular shampoo..

Windows - Use an alcoholic type window spray. The one's that
evoporate quicker leave a much better finish, than those that require
alot of rubbing. Use deposible tissue papers that dont leave
fibres. Dont use cloths, as they make more mess/dust.

Hoover dashboard switches and stuff with the brush bit on the hoover. It helps get dust out of all the gaps..

It's also worth shampooing the doorcards,dash, plastics with an
interior shampoo. Use warm water and a harsh sponge to lightly
scrub. Wipe off using a clean synthetic chamois. U shouldnt
need to dress the plastics.. it looks shiney and naff if u do

I always wipe down the door shuts, rubber door seals, window seals
etc. Amazing how dirty black rubbers can make such a difference.

If the rubbers need sprucing up, use Halfords exterior trim treatment -
its an oily silicon liquid that gets rubbed onto the black
rubbers. It makes them look new again.

I hope some of the tips help.
 

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Cleaning my car lets see........, how long do you get before the beeps go at the jet wash(with one side still soaped up[:$])

Dont you just hate that!
 

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I like to spend a full weekend on my car in summer, when it's warm I
prefer to stick the car on the drive in the morning and give it a good
wash, clay and do the wheels. Then go in for lunch and have a bacon
butty. Then after lunch i get to the proper detailing, clean, polish
and wax the paint. Clean the engine bay and wax the wheels. Love
getting into all the little gaps, behind the reg plates, door hinges
and under the doors. While doing this I find it essential to drink some
tins of beer and have regular "forum breaks".

The following day I like to do the interior and then go out for a
little blast. Give it another quick clean and stick it in the garage.
 

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As long as it takes to get it back to what I'm happy with![;)]

Can be as little as 1.5 hrs but prior to a show or for the photoshoot I
had recently I spent a couple of hours most evenings of the week and a
half prior to it! (It is kept indoors and I can clean it in there
too[:D]) Although it was very clean at the end of it!

GtiFly has just about summed up the cleaning technique, although I do
use a water blade, much quicker to remove most of the water, then a
synthetic chamois to remove rest.

I find the whole process very very theraputic, so sometimes I'll spend ages for the sake of it to unwind!
 

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Takes me ages to clean a car! To clean it outside and in including the wheels will take 3 hours. A full wax takes two hours on top of that.. Once I spent 10 hours..
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Jase, thanks for writing that lot out, good tips which will help many people. The heated jet wash thing sounds just the ticket, after all you don't take a bath or wash your dishes in cold water, I just didn't know you could get such a thing, or that it wouldn't be crazy expensive.

Wayne, I know exactly what you mean. It's almost addictive, there are few things that feel as good as polished and waxed car paintwork, so I'll do the main exterior panels, which doesn't take a huge effort because they're large and accessible, then maybe pop open my bonnet... then start polishing and waxing in there - I don't have the sound damping material under my bonnet, it's bare painted metal like the top, so I'll do that, and the visible painted insides of the doors as well, it feels great, and seeing the reflection of the engine bay in the underside of the bonnet is also nice!

I don't have the luxury of leather seats, so have Halfords nylon covers on most of the time, and just take them off for meets [;)]
 

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It takes as long as it takes is all I can say on the subject.

Once you have the car to a certain level/standard, its a lot less work the next time to get it back to that level.

For me just washing the car takes about 11/2 hr's, but I'm sure if I wasnt so anal about it, I could cut that in half easily.

[:)]
 

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I always get moaned at when I clean my car by the g/f!

I don't care though as I love the look of the car gleaming! For a good sesh it takes me about 3 hours - that is with the full Zymol treatment. If I really wanted to go to town I would spend a good weekend cleaning it - that includes the underneath, every section of the wheels, and then on the second day the inside - full hoover, buff over, and something like Fabreeze just to keep it fresh.

In my opinion, there is nothing like a clean car! [:D]
 

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As long as it takes to get it back to what I'm happy with![;)]

Can be as little as 1.5 hrs but prior to a show or for the photoshoot I had recently I spent a couple of hours most evenings of the week and a half prior to it! (It is kept indoors and I can clean it in there too[:D]) Although it was very clean at the end of it!

I find the whole process very very theraputic, so sometimes I'll spend ages for the sake of it to unwind!
mate.......you know my answer on this already!

Its virtually a carbon copy of your answer, minus the photoshoot, and the kept indoors and able to clean bit)

my car is to such a standard now, that a "quick" wash, will leave my car as clean as some peoples that have spent an age doing it. It also looks freshly waxed after a simple wash. which helps.

but i've spent the best part of a day donig mine in the summer. was it needed...no......

three days is just crazy, and agruably pointless.
 

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A full detailing session can take me 2-3 days (approx 30hours). I do this twice a year.

This includes washing under the car, engine bay, wheel arches scrubbed, de-tared and dressed, car polished with PC and several layers of sealant and wax. Basically the car will look better than new by the end of it!

A normal session will take 1 full day (10hours). I would do this 10 times a year.
 

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I can quite happily spend 10-12 hours cleaning my car inside and out. This is a major clean to remove any swirls, light scratches etc and to get the paint into a mirror like state.

After that a "quick" hose off takes about 1.75 hours with an hour to hoover the inside. If the glass needs doing then thats another 45 minutes on top...

Nice to be outside in the fresh air...
 

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At this time of year... 2 hours once a week to wash/dry, a bit more to top up the wax once a month

Show season... as long as it takes to make sure its perfect!
 

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yesterday as it was dry and sunny and I work from home--I washed and waxed with Souveran and rebuffed,cleaned windows,waxed alloys and with a 5 miunte chat to the neighbour,10 minute coffee break it tok me around 2 hours and enjoyed it.

Ok the car is only 5 weeks the pain work is perfect and Souveran wax application is a doddle I can advise on /off easy and the shune on black is awesome-try it.

On Monday I washed only and dried jsut before the snow arrived the civic in around 40 minutes.
 

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It takes as long as it takes is all I can say on the subject.

Once you have the car to a certain level/standard, its a lot less work the next time to get it back to that level.

For me just washing the car takes about 11/2 hr's, but I'm sure if I wasnt so anal about it, I could cut that in half easily.

[:)]
I remember you saying earlier this year you were gonna have a 24 hour straight detailing session !
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I can do a "quick" 2 hour job, but I don't feel really satisfied until I know I've done loads of little details, it's as if I can feel the neglect. Then there's extra time needed to take photos (more so since joining this forum) and hopefully the weather is good as well so I can cruise out for an exhibition lap [H][:$][:D] (and get it dirty again, d'oh!)

Somehow the car seems to drive better after a good cleaning and detailing session [:S]
 

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It takes as long as it takes is all I can say on the subject.

Once you have the car to a certain level/standard, its a lot less work the next time to get it back to that level.

For me just washing the car takes about 11/2 hr's, but I'm sure if I wasnt so anal about it, I could cut that in half easily.

[:)]
I remember you saying earlier this year you were gonna have a 24 hour straight detailing session !
[:$]

There's still 30days left of this year you know [;)]
 

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on an average it take 2-3 hours for a good wash inc door shuts archie,interior clean,vac,windows,polish,wax,wheels,exhaust polish. BUT i have the advantige of bein a valater and having everything i need at hand nxt to me in a heated wash bay :)  ..... but when i had the car it took me 2 days from 11-4..
 
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