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Thread: Pre Waxing and minor swirl question.

          
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    Pre Waxing and minor swirl question.

    I've got a dark red 2012 fusion that I bought second hand. Overall the car looks pretty good for it's age with some minor wear and tear from everyday use. I was planning to give it a coat of wax this weekend and wanted to ask a couple question before I do.

    Traditionally, I go over the car with a paint cleanser to remove the old wax and then the clay bar. Now, I must admit that I "was" using another brand and that particular product was discontinued. So I'm wondering whether Meguiars sells anything similar that I could use prior to applying new wax?. Or..... is it even necessary?. I was always under the impression that the old wax had to be stripped off before the clay bar was done, followed by polish/sealer and wax.

    Secondly... I'm debating on whether I should use Meguiar's swirl remover or ultimate compound to remove some "minor" swirls and faint scratches from the trunk lid. The rest of the car looks pretty good because I had both the roof and hood buffed by a professional to remove scratches. But the trunk is the only one that wasn't touched.

    If I had to rate it's appearance out of 10. I'd give it 7. Not the worst I've seen but.... it could be better.

    So, I'm wondering. What's the best product I could use to either eliminate or at least restore the finish so that it's close to looking perfect?. I don't want anything that will remove the finish or cause me to burn through the clear coat. How effective will it be to do this by hand?.

    Would appreciate any feedback you could provide

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    Registered Member ffboy's Avatar
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    Re: Pre Waxing and minor swirl question.

    Quote Originally Posted by LimeStang View Post
    I've got a dark red 2012 fusion that I bought second hand. Overall the car looks pretty good for it's age with some minor wear and tear from everyday use. I was planning to give it a coat of wax this weekend and wanted to ask a couple question before I do.

    Traditionally, I go over the car with a paint cleanser to remove the old wax and then the clay bar. Now, I must admit that I "was" using another brand and that particular product was discontinued. So I'm wondering whether Meguiars sells anything similar that I could use prior to applying new wax?. Or..... is it even necessary?. I was always under the impression that the old wax had to be stripped off before the clay bar was done, followed by polish/sealer and wax.

    Secondly... I'm debating on whether I should use Meguiar's swirl remover or ultimate compound to remove some "minor" swirls and faint scratches from the trunk lid. The rest of the car looks pretty good because I had both the roof and hood buffed by a professional to remove scratches. But the trunk is the only one that wasn't touched.

    If I had to rate it's appearance out of 10. I'd give it 7. Not the worst I've seen but.... it could be better.

    So, I'm wondering. What's the best product I could use to either eliminate or at least restore the finish so that it's close to looking perfect?. I don't want anything that will remove the finish or cause me to burn through the clear coat. How effective will it be to do this by hand?.

    Would appreciate any feedback you could provide
    Hello! Minor swirls can still be tough to remove, one factor would be the hardness of the paint, so you should use the least aggressive method first, ideally, you'd want to do a test spot to see if SwirlX would be sufficient in removing minor swirls, if not, test spot again using Ultimate Compound, you will also have to see if both leave the paint clear and with no marring after trying out both products. If the scratches are really minor, even Mirror Bright Polishing wax (it is a cleaner wax) can be sufficient in removing the minor swirl marks, since Mirror Bright also good cleaning properties. Remember to clay the car first. As for burning through the paint or removing a bit of clear, with paint correction, you're actually removing a very small amount of clear, although it would be very hard if not impossible to burn through the paint when using paint cleaners (Ultimate Compound, M105, etc.) by hand. What I would do when using Mirror Bright Polishing wax is to use a bit more pressure and work it into the paint just a bit more almost just as you would when using meguiar's paint cleaners or compounds, allow to haze, then buff off the hazed wax.

    You can follow it up with any meguiar's wax you want, which are plenty, and really up to you which you want (Gold Class Carnauba Plus, NXT 2.0, Ultimate Wax, PP365 or Ultimate Fast Finish)

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    Product & Training Specialist |MOL Admin Nick Winn's Avatar
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    Re: Pre Waxing and minor swirl question.

    Quote Originally Posted by LimeStang View Post
    I've got a dark red 2012 fusion that I bought second hand. Overall the car looks pretty good for it's age with some minor wear and tear from everyday use. I was planning to give it a coat of wax this weekend and wanted to ask a couple question before I do.

    Traditionally, I go over the car with a paint cleanser to remove the old wax and then the clay bar. Now, I must admit that I "was" using another brand and that particular product was discontinued. So I'm wondering whether Meguiars sells anything similar that I could use prior to applying new wax?. Or..... is it even necessary?. I was always under the impression that the old wax had to be stripped off before the clay bar was done, followed by polish/sealer and wax.

    Secondly... I'm debating on whether I should use Meguiar's swirl remover or ultimate compound to remove some "minor" swirls and faint scratches from the trunk lid. The rest of the car looks pretty good because I had both the roof and hood buffed by a professional to remove scratches. But the trunk is the only one that wasn't touched.

    If I had to rate it's appearance out of 10. I'd give it 7. Not the worst I've seen but.... it could be better.

    So, I'm wondering. What's the best product I could use to either eliminate or at least restore the finish so that it's close to looking perfect?. I don't want anything that will remove the finish or cause me to burn through the clear coat. How effective will it be to do this by hand?.

    Would appreciate any feedback you could provide

    Congrats on the new car. With Meguiar's products & waxes, it is not necessary to use a particular product or method to remove any remaining wax each time prior to applying a new coat. Now regarding the use of a clay bar, this is used on an as needed basis to remove bonded above surface contaminants. If the paint feels rough or not completely smooth after washing, the clay bar will work to remove the contaminants and make the paint smooth again. How often this is needed all depends on maintenance & storage of the vehicle. For example, if the car is parked outside, and washed once a month, and waxed every 3 months, it probably should be clayed each time prior to applying wax. If the car is stored indoors, only driven on weekends, and wiped down with a Quik Detail spray ever couple days, it probably will never need to be clayed. The longer environmental contaminants have to sit on the paint the more likely they are going to have a chance to cause an issue like bond or stick to the paint. Again, to determine when to clay, evaluate by feeling the paint.

    Regarding the use of the pre-wax cleaner you mentioned you liked using, yes, we do have products one can use prior to applying a coat of wax to provide mild cleaning to the paint. Products with mild cleaning ability will work to remove light swirls & scratches, improve clarity & increase gloss. There are really a couple ways you can provide mild cleaning to your vehicles paint. You can use one of our "cleaner/polishes" like our Ultimate Polish Pre-Waxing Glaze, or you can use one of our "Cleaner/Waxes" like our Mirror Bright Polishing Wax. Ultimate Polish is applied is small sections at a time, worked in, and wiped off before it dries. Mirror Bright Polishing Wax is applied like a wax, but it is good to work it in more to utilize the cleaning ability. Using a dedicate Polish or Cleaner/Polish in most cases will delivery superior results than an "All in One" Cleaner Wax. With that said, cleaner waxes like our Mirror Bright Polishing Wax is a great option if you don't want to spend the time using a dedicate polish; cleaner waxes still deliver great results, just maybe not the absolute best show car perfect results. It all depends on your goals & how much time you are willing to put into it.

    Regarding removing the swirls/scratches on the trunk lid, if you are working by hand, I would recommend our Ultimate Compound.

    Hope this helps

    Nick
    Nick Winn
    Product & Training Specialist | Meguiar's Online Forum Administrator
    Meguiar's Inc.
    Irvine, CA
    nawinn@meguiars.com
    800-854-8073 ext 3845

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    Re: Pre Waxing and minor swirl question.

    Quote Originally Posted by ffboy View Post
    Hello! Minor swirls can still be tough to remove, one factor would be the hardness of the paint, so you should use the least aggressive method first, ideally, you'd want to do a test spot to see if SwirlX would be sufficient in removing minor swirls, if not, test spot again using Ultimate Compound, you will also have to see if both leave the paint clear and with no marring after trying out both products. If the scratches are really minor, even Mirror Bright Polishing wax (it is a cleaner wax) can be sufficient in removing the minor swirl marks, since Mirror Bright also good cleaning properties. Remember to clay the car first. As for burning through the paint or removing a bit of clear, with paint correction, you're actually removing a very small amount of clear, although it would be very hard if not impossible to burn through the paint when using paint cleaners (Ultimate Compound, M105, etc.) by hand. What I would do when using Mirror Bright Polishing wax is to use a bit more pressure and work it into the paint just a bit more almost just as you would when using meguiar's paint cleaners or compounds, allow to haze, then buff off the hazed wax.

    You can follow it up with any meguiar's wax you want, which are plenty, and really up to you which you want (Gold Class Carnauba Plus, NXT 2.0, Ultimate Wax, PP365 or Ultimate Fast Finish)
    Thanks for this helpful information!. I really appreciate it. I'll look into getting those products. Would you say that doing all this by hand would be just as effective as using a machine?. Obviously there will be more work involved doing it by hand, but can I expect to reach the same goal by doing it that way?. The car is 5 years old and I've had people say how great it looks after I've detailed it. Of course, I'm a bit of a perfectionist and notice all the flaws lol. I'm hesitant to do anything with the hood and roof because it was buffed a year ago and it still looks okay. I guess I can't expect anything to be 100% perfect, especially when it's a daily driver and exposed to all types of weather including winter.

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    Re: Pre Waxing and minor swirl question.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Winn View Post
    Congrats on the new car. With Meguiar's products & waxes, it is not necessary to use a particular product or method to remove any remaining wax each time prior to applying a new coat. Now regarding the use of a clay bar, this is used on an as needed basis to remove bonded above surface contaminants. If the paint feels rough or not completely smooth after washing, the clay bar will work to remove the contaminants and make the paint smooth again. How often this is needed all depends on maintenance & storage of the vehicle. For example, if the car is parked outside, and washed once a month, and waxed every 3 months, it probably should be clayed each time prior to applying wax. If the car is stored indoors, only driven on weekends, and wiped down with a Quik Detail spray ever couple days, it probably will never need to be clayed. The longer environmental contaminants have to sit on the paint the more likely they are going to have a chance to cause an issue like bond or stick to the paint. Again, to determine when to clay, evaluate by feeling the paint.

    Regarding the use of the pre-wax cleaner you mentioned you liked using, yes, we do have products one can use prior to applying a coat of wax to provide mild cleaning to the paint. Products with mild cleaning ability will work to remove light swirls & scratches, improve clarity & increase gloss. There are really a couple ways you can provide mild cleaning to your vehicles paint. You can use one of our "cleaner/polishes" like our Ultimate Polish Pre-Waxing Glaze, or you can use one of our "Cleaner/Waxes" like our Mirror Bright Polishing Wax. Ultimate Polish is applied is small sections at a time, worked in, and wiped off before it dries. Mirror Bright Polishing Wax is applied like a wax, but it is good to work it in more to utilize the cleaning ability. Using a dedicate Polish or Cleaner/Polish in most cases will delivery superior results than an "All in One" Cleaner Wax. With that said, cleaner waxes like our Mirror Bright Polishing Wax is a great option if you don't want to spend the time using a dedicate polish; cleaner waxes still deliver great results, just maybe not the absolute best show car perfect results. It all depends on your goals & how much time you are willing to put into it.

    Regarding removing the swirls/scratches on the trunk lid, if you are working by hand, I would recommend our Ultimate Compound.

    Hope this helps

    Nick
    Hi Nick. Thanks for your response and helpful information.
    The car is a daily driver and is unfortunately kept outside where it's exposed to all types of weather. I suspect that some of these "minor" scratches may be due to snow or ice sliding off. It's pretty hard to avoid. You mentioned about the frequency of using a clay bar. I usually clay the car whenever I do a major wax job. This past month has been particularly difficult because there's been tree pollen collecting on the car. I think it was also exposed to tree sap (or at least something similar) because I can feel bits stuck to the paint surface. I was able to remove most of it with a clay bar but may have to do it again as there's some spots I missed.

    So... if I understand you correctly. You're saying that the paint cleaner prior to wax is optional. If I do choose to go that route (my goal is to make the car look it's absolute best), and I use one of these products that you've mentioned. Then should I follow this up by using a polish/sealer then a final coat of wax?.

    At what point should the clay bar be used?. Before or after the paint cleaner?.

    sorry if I'm repeating myself. I just want to make sure I'm doing this right. Some of these products are hard to find here in Canada. It was suggested in another post that I should be using a foam applicator but I can't even find those at my automotive stores.


    On a related note. I've also got to do a wax job on my sister's 2010 Journey. That SUV is metalic black and with noticable swirl marks all over it. Even if I could reduce it by 50% I'd be happy. Would it be advisable to use this ultimate compound on this vehicle using my orbital polisher?. It's not high end but does save me time when spreading the wax. There is however some debate on various forums about whether swirl marks can be removed by hand or high speed buffer. I was hoping to have some success by doing it by hand.

    Thanks again for your assistance.

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    Registered Member ffboy's Avatar
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    Re: Pre Waxing and minor swirl question.

    If you really want the best results from the products, particularly the paint correction side of it, you will have to invest in a machine polisher (dual action polisher), you might be able to get similar or be able to approximate the results when done by hand (the paint correction), but it will take a lot of time and effort, and some products may not be recommended for hand application.

    As for paint cleaning, it is optional, and to a certain extent, required, this will depend on the workability of the paint. On some paints, even a potent cleaner wax may be sufficient in removing some scratches, on some paints, a milder paint cleaner might be needed, on some strange paints, even the lightest scratches are nearly impossible to remove.

    The sequence would be:
    Wash
    Clay
    Clean Paint
    Pure Polish/Cleaner Polish
    Wax/Sealant

    On using Ultimate Compound on your sister's black metallic paint with an orbital polisher, it may not have enough power to really work the compound to remove scratches. If Ultimate Compound is left to dry to a haze and removed like the usual wax, it may leave the paint worse than when you started. Do a test spot first, as in a 1ft x 1ft area, use a foam applicator, apply in circular motions or straight lines, using moderate and consistent pressure, work it in until it turns a bit clearer (it should become clearer I think as it is worked in), then remove while wet. Determine if the results are desirable. On some paints, using Ultimate Compound alone will remove scratches, but might leave the paint with marring, which may require a milder paint cleaner or cleaner polish.

    For tough paint cleaning jobs-Ultimate Compound, the most aggressive consumer level paint cleaner/compound from meguiars.
    For lighter scratches/swirls-SwirlX or Ultimate Polish, Ultimate Polish has polishing oils in it vs. SwirlX, since Ultimate Polish has more oils in it, it will add more depth (great on dark colors), while refining the initial cleaning done by Ultimate Compound.

    Deep Crystal Pure Polish-Basically a glaze, contains NO ABRASIVES, just polishing oils to add more depth (yes, nice to use on dark colors), and may be able to conceal some light scratches that may not have been removed by the earlier cleaning steps done.

    Ultimate Wax (liquid or paste)-A great product, not as advanced as the Ultimate Fast Finish or Paint Protect 365, it once ruled over as Meguiar's most durable product. After allowing the product to cure for at least 12 hours, you can top this (optionally) with a Carnauba wax for more depth (Deep Crystal or M26 Hi-Tech Yellow Wax) or top it all off with Ultimate Fast Finish.

    As with all the suggestions, don't do the entire car immediately, for the paint correction, a small area first. Through that, you can determine how much pressure/product you'll have to use to achieve a desired result. As for the steps after correction, do a side by side, see if the polishing step makes a big enough difference to you, same goes with the wax layering step. If the paint's look has a noticeable enough difference when applying Carnauba over the Ultimate wax, then go for it. If not, then just make the Ultimate Wax step your last step in your whole detailing process.

    For both cars, I really suggest adding the polishing or cleaner-polish step, your dark red will look richer and deeper, the metallic black will look a lot deeper and clearer, and the metallic flakes will be more visible, and will pop even more.

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