Posted by James Dudra on February 05, 2014
Have you ever looked at your car from certain angles and seen those tiny fine lines in the paint? Some call them "spiderwebs" others "swirlmarks". These are fine scratches that have occurred over time due to improper care and car washing techniques. We're going to give you five tips to prevent swirl marks from showing up.
Microfiber Only Please
Terry towels, chamois and squeegees are big no-no's when washing your car. These materials have little absorbency and can easily scratch the surface. Always go for high-quality microfiber towels. We're not talking about those cheap towels you can find in the big box retailers, but quality towels that will withstand numerous washes. An easy way to tell if your towel is quality is to look at the tag. Ideally you want 300 GSM (grams per square meter) with an 80/20 blend (polyester/polyamide)
Less Pressure Is Best
One of the leading causes of swirl marks is due to excessive pressure while washing or drying the car. Even the softest towel with enough pressure can cause damage. Your best bet it to apply very light strokes on the first pass of a dirty car panel. As more and more dirt is removed you can get a bit more aggressive. Also, remember to use front to back strokes when washing the car. Ditch the karate kid method, it is just asking for trouble.
If You Drop It, Ditch It
This is a fairly obvious tip, but one that should be re-iterated when using microfiber. Anytime a towel is dropped, put it aside for a wash. The tiny hooks on the end of the microfiber can grab even the tiniest particles of dirt. So while that towel may look clean, you could end up damaging the car.
Know Your Product's Limit
Mud? Salt? Sand? Anything with heavy debris regardless of the washing method you use should pre-washed first. A little common sense goes a long way in preventing swirl marks.
Use Two Buckets
This tips applies to those of you still using soap and water. Two buckets is always better than one. Use the first bucket for the soapy suds and a second for rinsing the towel clean. For example, after your've taken a pass on the car's paint, dip your wash towel into the rinse bucket and then go to the soapy bucket. Also, if your rinse bucket has warm water, it will allow the microfiber to open up and release dirty more freely. James Dudra on Google+