Tips for the lazy detailer?

Discussion in 'SRT Hellcat Detailing' started by Tea cups, Apr 23, 2016.

  1. Tea cups

    Tea cups Hellcat Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2016
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    11
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    Have a silver HC Challenger on order that I'll be driving year-round including in snow (sand used on icy roads - no salt). I know that I'm lazy (and frugal) when it comes to washing, polishing, and waxing cars so I'm wondering if anyone has any tips for me? At most, I'll likely wax the car 1-2 times per year and washing is probably limited to one of those automated spray car washes once a month (occasionally a hand wash especially right before wax). In the winter, it will likely go longer as those places are closed (gets really cold here like negative double digits at night). Luckily I came to my senses and cancelled my previous order for a Black HC.

    I would like to use some kind of orbital buffer that is idiot-proof - have used an old Sears model in the past. I like the Turtle Wax Ice brand because you can apply it to practically everything including trim but I don't know how long the liquid version lasts (have only used paste before). Also any recommendations for a polish that is also mostly idiot-proof?

    As far as taking it to a professional to get detailed, I live in the middle of nowhere so the options for detailing are likely some self-taught 16-year old kid running his detailing service from his Pontiac Grand Am. It is about a 6-hour round trip to the first major city and I'm paranoid about leaving my cars with anyone (which is why I do all my own maintenance).
     
  2. schv

    schv SRT Hellcat Supporter Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2015
    Messages:
    125
    Likes Received:
    81
    Trophy Points:
    198
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    Go to www.autogeek.net and take a look at their orbital polishers. They are also a wealth of information on techniques to avoid scratching or swirling the paint to begin with. Spend some time reading on that site and on the forums associated with it. I have a Griots Garage 6 inch polisher that I've used a few times on my `07 Ram, and it comes back looking like new paint every time.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. Tea cups

    Tea cups Hellcat Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2016
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    11
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    Thanks. Looks pretty good and does mention it can be used by a novice.
     
  4. MABBRYFL30

    MABBRYFL30 NYS President Hellcat Car Club Gold Supporting Member

    Top Poster Of Month

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2016
    Messages:
    4,621
    Likes Received:
    1,836
    Trophy Points:
    568
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    I have seen these cars from underneath only after being shipped with salt on roads. The damage salt causes is incredible. I would if you live in a state with salt to wash the undercarriage frequently as possible. A good wax/coating is zano and meguires makes good stuff. Zano when applied will allow you to micro fiber bugs and crap right off easily.
     
  5. MABBRYFL30

    MABBRYFL30 NYS President Hellcat Car Club Gold Supporting Member

    Top Poster Of Month

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2016
    Messages:
    4,621
    Likes Received:
    1,836
    Trophy Points:
    568
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    Give yourself more credit than novice. You will own a hellcat!!!! Have the confidence that you can do it!!!
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. Tea cups

    Tea cups Hellcat Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2016
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    11
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    They don't use salt on the roads where I live (sand only). I am very diligent about wrenching on my car (maintenance, etc.) because I actually enjoy doing that stuff but when it comes to washing/waxing I get lazy (relative to other enthusiasts) because I don't like to do it even if it is a vehicle I am passionate about. So, whatever is the easiest/quickest path for long-term exterior maintenance is the one for me. That's not to say my cars end up looking like crap over the years - they still look decent as I do wax once per year (and occasionally polish/wax) and keep them garaged/etc but I know I will not be as diligent as a lot of you on this forum with their HC.
     
  7. MattG

    MattG Gold Member Hellcat Car Club

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2015
    Messages:
    848
    Likes Received:
    453
    Trophy Points:
    313
    Location:
    Allentown, PA
    Vehicle:
    Charger SRT Hellcat
    Automated car washes will scratch the surface. On my Cat it will never see one.

    Do it by hand or have someone do it for you. But no machines on the paint.
    The brushless ones never get it done anyway.

    We all change with these cars, you might enjoy putting your hands on it to keep a good eye on the finish.
    Have fun with it.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
  8. Tea cups

    Tea cups Hellcat Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2016
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    11
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    So I'm looking for (if this is even possible):
    1. Durable wax (lasts 6 months or so) that is as easy to apply and easy to take off as possible and does not cause headaches with staining trim/etc.
    2. A polish that I can use every once in a while (also as fool-proof as possible).
    3. Easy-to-use buffer/polisher that I can use to do #1 and #2 and is as fool-proof as possible.
     
  9. Tea cups

    Tea cups Hellcat Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2016
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    11
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    One thing is that I live in a very dry climate - 10 in. of rain per year and about 30 in. of snow. Not sure if that is good or bad when it comes to this.
     
  10. schv

    schv SRT Hellcat Supporter Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2015
    Messages:
    125
    Likes Received:
    81
    Trophy Points:
    198
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    On a brand new car, I wouldn't use a polisher except to correct any minor scratches. I would do a clay bar treatment to remove any foreign grime that's embedded in the paint (including overspray), then apply a sealer such as Meguire's NXT. They call it a liquid wax but in reality it's just a synthetic polymer based sealer and it will last many months. Top that with a coat or two of quality pure carnuba based wax and it will gleam. The top coats of wax will protect the paint as well as shine like crazy. You'll be able to remove bugs and stuff using just a microfiber towel and some spray liquid detailer. Water spots will be easier to remove if there is wax underneath as well. Most modern waxes, including paste waxes, are soft and very easy to apply and remove by hand.
    Another tip - when you wash the car, immediately hand dry it with a proper microfiber towel. If you don't you'll get water spots in the paint and then you'll have to apply a buffer/polisher to get it back. The dry climate you live in is an advantage for sure - less rain to spot up the paint and easier/quicker to dry after washing.
    Finally, keep an assortment of microfiber towels on hand. Any towel that will be touching paint must be clean and free of any dirt particles. Once you use a new towel on the paint a couple of times (washing them after using) then relegate it to glass and interior and after another couple fo wash cycles it's still good for wheels and as a shop rag. If a paint bound towel hits a concrete or other dirty floor, it's no longer good for paint use. Always using a clean new towel on paint is one of the best ways to prevent swirls.
    Again, the Autogeek website is a store, but they have an incredible selection and their website is packed with how to articles and tips for paint care and repair. No I don't work there or own stock.... ;)
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Useful Useful x 1
  11. MattG

    MattG Gold Member Hellcat Car Club

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2015
    Messages:
    848
    Likes Received:
    453
    Trophy Points:
    313
    Location:
    Allentown, PA
    Vehicle:
    Charger SRT Hellcat
    If you want to get into a system of products, these come to mind.

    I bought into the Adam's polishes line. they have "kits" to do stuff.
    Also Griots line. Same situation. they have a bundle of things to get you started.
    I searched around and got an orbital for what i use and got used to using it. Now my stuff is very smooth and looks great.

    Others will chime in on their preferences, and what works for them. All choices for you to think about.

    Try the Adams site and see a few of their videos on using the products to see if this is the way you want to go.
    Adam's Polishes

    I am sure Griots has the same type videos.
    Videos - Griot's Garage

    Look at CarPro-USA on our vendor list.
    The vendor on this site have some videos also on their forum at this link.
    How To .......

    Great videos also on Chemical Guys website. HOW TO ARTICLES & VIDEOS

    Once you see what they do, see if you think you will follow through doing the same.

    Now i got you busy. Watch a few and you will see you can do most of them yourself.

    Matt
     
  12. Tea cups

    Tea cups Hellcat Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2016
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    11
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    Wow - if that's the lazy man's method, I'd hate to hear the hard method.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  13. TallCool1

    TallCool1 Gold Member Hellcat Car Club Gold Supporting Member Nat'l Hellcat Tech Advisor HCC Charter Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2015
    Messages:
    2,392
    Likes Received:
    791
    Trophy Points:
    458
    Location:
    Pacific NW
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    Agree Rupes (RO) is the lazy way and safer for a beginner compared too DA. A little learning then saves time, big time.
     
  14. Oshkosh707

    Oshkosh707 Senior Hellcat Member

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2016
    Messages:
    123
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    58
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    I second auto geek.net. Lots of how to do videos. Probably want to go with a paint sealant instead of a wax as its only once a year. I get most of my detail equipment here. I have a cat in d status right now and placed an order last week from auto geek I am sure I will get the detail items before I get the car!!
     
  15. natesrt

    natesrt Silver Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2015
    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    85
    Trophy Points:
    178
    Vehicle:
    Challenger SRT Hellcat
    You could find someone to apply a coating such as ceramic pro or cquartz.

    I had ceramic pro done to mine and it makes cleaning much easier. You still need to follow proper washing methods to increase the longevity of the coating but time between cleanings can extend since the car stays cleaner for longer.

    Depending on what you go with they can last years.
     
    • Like Like x 1

Share This Page