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Discussion Starter #1
This may have been discussed before but then maybe not. For those who are forced to drive all year round in Ice & snow, How do you clean your car?

Here salt is a way of life on the roads. So the cars get pretty crusty fast. A simple washing at car wash is not very easy, you just can't hose off the dirt & crud. Also care must be taken when dring to make sure all seals are clean & dry otherwise you will not be able to get back in your car later. ?:|

BTW, I stay away from brush & rag car washes & go to DIY washes instead. No foam brush either.

Last year my hood was frozen shut or open half the time till I would get to work or home depending when it was last opened. (I have a heater block plugin & run battery on trickle charge over night) It was -5 below zero last night so cars tend to start very slowly if at all & winter hasn't even hit us here yet. (guess I need another oil change or time to move). ;)

Anyway any thoughts would help, I've held out cleaning car till new paint cured. But its pretty crusty now.
 

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I find it impossible to keep my black PT clean in winter. And now that I have moved to a colder climate, I am scared stiff.... My poor baby already looks neglected and I am ashamed to drive her :(
 

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Take a leaf blower to the car wash & give her a blow dry before leaving & use a silicone spray on weatherstriping. People will think you're crazy but the car washes are only used by other crazy people in the winter & might want you to do theirs too. Usually I'll wash my truck just before a road trip & have no problems. Spray your locks with teflon lubricant especially on cars a few years old, the factory lube dries out.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Big Jon said:
Take a leaf blower to the car wash & give her a blow dry before leaving & use a silicone spray on weatherstriping. People will think you're crazy but the car washes are only used by other crazy people in the winter & might want you to do theirs too. Usually I'll wash my truck just before a road trip & have no problems. Spray your locks with teflon lubricant especially on cars a few years old, the factory lube dries out.
Leaf blower is a great idea! so is the silicone. but what about the grit? I find that scraces me to try & brush/rub it off. 8*
 

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GR8FLPT said:
Leaf blower is a great idea! so is the silicone. but what about the grit? I find that scraces me to try & brush/rub it off. 8*
Wash your car as normal:

1. Soak it by blasting it with your hose at WOT (heh) to spray off as much as possible
2. Go heavy on your car wash mix ratio
3. Use hot water in your bucket (warm water makes the cleaner work more effectively and incidentally keeps your hands warm)
4. Use a separate bucket for rinsing your mit, change its water frequently if necessary. Rinse your mit with the hose first, then swish in rinse bucket, then hit the soap bucket.
5. If road grime is still stuck to your surface, saturate a cotton cloth with lighter fluid or 3M adhesive cleaner, let it soak into the grime and rub it off. Rinse thoroughly. I have never seen lighter fluid harm a plastic or metal surface doing this.
6. Have a boar's hair/horse hair brush and one or two sheepskin mits in your arsenal. They are very soft and get the job done. NO sponges and NO terrycloth towels! Microfiber towels are king for drying.
7. Keep your whole car wet/rinsed as you wash, do not let water dry on it or waterspots will develop. Better still, add an RV drinking water filter to your hose.

The biggest threat to your finish is improperly washing/drying it, namely not keeping the surface wet, not keeping wash mit clean (thereby dragging dirt along the surface), and using abrasive materials. Work in small areas and from the top down (least to most dirty).

Keep it waxed, too, that is your protection against the elements. If water globs and runs off (does not bead), then you need to get some wax on there.

Good luck!
 

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i usually dont drive my cruiser year round, but lately i see my beater and my pt. which one do you think i go to. :) but after this weekend my cruiser will be parked for about 2 weeks, but i have had her 1 year with 8,000 miles so that not bad. lately i have been going to a self-serve car wash i hate to do it but its to cold to do it in my driveway. keeps it looking good, but i would rather do it in my driveway. :x :x
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Rolo said:
Wash your car as normal:

1. Soak it by blasting it with your hose at WOT (heh) to spray off as much as possible
2. Go heavy on your car wash mix ratio
3. Use hot water in your bucket (warm water makes the cleaner work more effectively and incidentally keeps your hands warm)
4. Use a separate bucket for rinsing your mit, change its water frequently if necessary. Rinse your mit with the hose first, then swish in rinse bucket, then hit the soap bucket.
5. If road grime is still stuck to your surface, saturate a cotton cloth with lighter fluid or 3M adhesive cleaner, let it soak into the grime and rub it off. Rinse thoroughly. I have never seen lighter fluid harm a plastic or metal surface doing this.
6. Have a boar's hair/horse hair brush and one or two sheepskin mits in your arsenal. They are very soft and get the job done. NO sponges and NO terrycloth towels! Microfiber towels are king for drying.
7. Keep your whole car wet/rinsed as you wash, do not let water dry on it or waterspots will develop. Better still, add an RV drinking water filter to your hose.

The biggest threat to your finish is improperly washing/drying it, namely not keeping the surface wet, not keeping wash mit clean (thereby dragging dirt along the surface), and using abrasive materials. Work in small areas and from the top down (least to most dirty).

Keep it waxed, too, that is your protection against the elements. If water globs and runs off (does not bead), then you need to get some wax on there.

Good luck!
Now that was some good advice! 8-|
I wish I could leave it parked, but we have only a 1 car garage & wife does not share my view about the PT like you all do.

I will not go the beater route. Been there too many years, the purpose of me having a nice car is to enjoy it. when its time of use is up, I'll buy another to replace it. I had a Honda CRX for 11 years. the last 5 years I had it, the A/C wasn't working. that sucked in summer but it wasn't worth the expense to repair.
I will drive this at least 2-3 more years & then I will look at next replacement... most likely a turbo model. hopefully a 2 door version when they come out.

but for now, keeping It clean of salts & road grime once a week will have to do.
 

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Why would people think you're weird for washing the car in the winter? There are lines out the a__ here at car washes all year long. Those 'laser washes' are pointless. I found a self-serve car wash near my home that uses softened hot water. I use it in the winter to get the ice and snow out from the wheel wells (it's never a good sound when they break off while driving and clunk around the wheel well or scrape along the bottom of the car.) We don't use salt on the roads here, mostly sand and runway de-icer. The runway de-icer sticks to your car and makes it feel like sandpaper in the spring. A blue PT that turns brown is not a pretty PT.

The silicone spray is a great idea for the door seals. Definitely bring some towels. If you go at an off-peak time you'll get away with sitting in the bay while you dry your car off. Some car washes (usually full-serve, unfortunately) have air compressors that they use to blow the water out of your lock cylinders. You could always use a can of air (meant for cleaning computers, etc) with you to blast the locks.

I don't mind the sticky door seals once in a while, but what I do mind is that incessant rattling of the ice after it freezes up again. Makes the car sound like a hunk of junk going down the road. Oh Calgon, take me to a heated garage!!!
 

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Winter is the time, we need car washing tools because our car got dirt easily in a single ride on the wet road. Mostly I wash car by myself. I could use the microfiber towels of HY Supplies Inc, to wash the car as well as dry the car. Its a special type of towels of good absorbing capacity, so that it dries the car quickly without making lint.
 
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