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Thread: Underbody detailing

          
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    Registered Member onnfire's Avatar
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    Underbody detailing

    I know there was a question just like this but there was never a good answer. What product would you use to clean and then dress the underbody of the car?

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    Safe-D-Greaser is a good way to clean the underbody. Super Degreaser if the underbody is very dirty. Now, as the other thread may have suggested, dressing will only help if there are plastic/rubber surfaces or if a rubberized undercoating of some sort has been applied. For this, pick your dressing. I would suggest All Season Dressing for this.

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    Registered Member broken1's Avatar
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    Originally posted by matt colvin
    Safe-D-Greaser is a good way to clean the underbody. Super Degreaser if the underbody is very dirty. Now, as the other thread may have suggested, dressing will only help if there are plastic/rubber surfaces or if a rubberized undercoating of some sort has been applied. For this, pick your dressing. I would suggest All Season Dressing for this.
    Surely dressing would just be washed away almost instantly from the wind and dirt underneath the car?

    I'm not pro - but I think I would skip the dressing :-)
    BMW E90 320d.
    Newbie Detailer - South Africa

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    Surely dressing would just be washed away almost instantly from the wind and dirt underneath the car?

    Well.....

    I'll have to respectfully disagree with you, lol. If there are rubber or plastic surfaces, then a good dressing will help in a variety of ways. For one thing, it will dramatically improve the appearance of the underbody. Secondly, it's going to make future cleanings much easier. Just think of when someone properly dresses wheelwells that have a rubberized coating, they're MUCH easier to clean.

    I'm unable to locate any pics right now, so I'll include this link that had some discussion on the subject.

    Underbody Dressing link

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    Registered Member broken1's Avatar
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    I am here to learn!! :-)
    Thanks for the link...
    BMW E90 320d.
    Newbie Detailer - South Africa

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    Re: Underbody detailing

    Originally posted by onnfire
    I know there was a question just like this but there was never a good answer. What product would you use to clean and then dress the underbody of the car?
    I would not use a degreaser just because of the feeling that you may, actually degrease things you don't wanto, like joints that are lubricated that are part of the underbody of a car/truck, mainly suspension components. I do use safe-d greaser on wheel wells though. The method I used to clean the under body of my truck a long time ago was rinse, spray diluted NXT wash with a foaming sprayer, agitate with versa angle body brush, then rinse again. Now I probably would've used a pressure washer and Super Soap but still would've used a dedicated brush for the underbody. Hope this gives you some ideas.
    BTW I did not use any dressings because I thought the only difference it would've actually made would've been to the gas tank.
    Maybe I'll do a write up when I decide to actually "detail" under there. But I need new jack stands because my old ones were thrown away by the mother.
    Last edited by F-150; Jun 9th, 2006 at 12:39 PM.

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    I've done fine with degreasers, but then I'm pretty careful about what I use them on down there. If you degrease something that oughta be lubricated, re-lube it. But don't spray it carelessly, shift linkage can be a pain to access and properly re-lube (same with some parking brake systems).

    I go both ways on dressing/etc. the undercarriage. Generally, on daily drivers, I don't bother. It's one thing to do a quick dressing of the wheelwells, but to really *detail* and undercarriage is a big job.

    Just cleaning it at every wash makes for an incredible improvement over not doing anything and just cleaning it is enough work for me most of the time (gotta jack most vehicles up, I keep two floorjacks and some jackstands in the washbay just for this). I've done it this way on vehicles I've kept a *long* time, and it always worked out fine. Note that I do mean *every* wash, I've never washed a daily driver and not had *something* dirty on the undercarriage.

    Edit: for these regular cleanings I use the same thing I use for wheels/wheelwells: slightly stronger-than-normal shampoo mix in a spray bottle. I also use soft brushess, sponges, etc. as it takes a little mechanical agitation to do the job.

    Heh heh, the few vehicles I keep truly *detailed* under there aren't really drivers, and only my mechanics (who think I'm nuts, in a good way of course) and I appreciate the effort. Yeah, it takes jackstands and it's a lot of work that's done lying on your back. Most dressings do wash off rather quickly and it's a pain to reapply them down there without getting them on things that shouldn't be dressed (e.g., stuff you wax instead).

    One good thing about doing something like this is that you become very familiar with parts of the car that most people never see. You can spot problems before they become serious, I've discovered things this way countless times.
    Last edited by Accumulator; Jun 9th, 2006 at 02:55 PM.
    Practical Perfectionist

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