Ah, the elegant black car! Isn’t it the smartest thing you have ever seen? Without a doubt, black is the color to define elegance, power, and sheer class in cars. From the Batmobile to Kit (Knight Rider), Detailing a black car has been the ultimate dream. Even in real life, black is the most popular color in vehicles.
There is one thing about black cars that do stand out. Maintaining their color and shine is quite a challenge. As soon as a black car leaves the dealership, its glow starts wearing off. But still, black maintains its attraction, and it continues to sell more than any other color in cars.
My goal here is to explain what type of normal wear and tear affects a black car. You can also learn about expert-recommended advice, tips, and tricks on how to maintain a black car. Let’s get going!
All sorts of swirls, blemishes, scratches, and even dust are very prominent in black cars. The reason is simple. The reason is the stark contrast of any color against black.
Light, as it shines on a black car, must reflect back without scattering. If it scatters for any reason, it immediately shows up against the black background.
While driving, the wind blows hard against the body of a vehicle. This wind carries dust and debris at a very high speed. It acts as a sandblaster on the surface of the automobile.
One of the most common ways in which the paint job of a black car gets marred is careless washing. Light scratches and swirls form when:
The vehicle body is not rinsed before washing.
When polyester fiber cloths and dirty rags used to dry off the car gets dragged on the car after washing.
Sometimes people get tempted to dry wipe a black car. This is the cruelest thing to do on a black car. Even a dirty car cover scratches the surface of a black car, as it gets put on and taken off.
This oxidation fades the color. This too is an annoying challenge to maintaining a black car.
The basics of maintaining a black car do not differ from those of any other car. The difference, like the devil, is in the detail.
Even if you are taking extreme care while washing a black car, its shine and finish will get damaged to some extent. Know that the clear coat on any car becomes whitish and opaque when it develops any surface flaws. These flaws get amplified by a black background. This is why you should take extra precautions when detailing a black car.
You cannot rely on normal polishes and waxes to produce a flawless look on a black car. Their surfaces and paint need protection. Hand-washing your vehicle is the safest way to reduce any damage to the paint and clear coat.
Specialized products are available on the market or on Amazon for detailing a black car. Products used in black cars include:
No wonder detailing service providers charge extra for working on a black car.
Washing a black car by hand is the safest way to avoid damage.
Quality microfiber cloths, help remove contaminants that can wear off the clear coating.
You must follow these rules if you want to control those nagging swirl marks and scratches:
Fine scratches and swirl marks are removed by using a compound polish which is designed to be used on black cars. There are several brands available on the market. Some of them already include both polishing and waxing ingredients.
It’s a matter of preference, but most detail professionals use them separately. You should use only the best wax for black cars with scratches.
Abrasive compounds and polishes may cause damage if misused. You must follow the instructions that come from the brand. Some brands make products that are meant to be hand-applied. There are others that recommend using a dual-action orbital tool.
After polishing the car, isopropyl-alcohol and water should be used to wipe all surfaces. This removes any tough resin or polish residue. Waxing after this step will restore that brand new shine to your black vehicle. Then comes the final step of applying a paint sealant or your choice of surface protection.
An important point to keep in mind is that waxes need reapplication once every two months or so. Sealants also wear off, but not as fast as waxes. They need reapplication soon after a year.
There are many factors that may cause swirl marks as you polish and wax your car. Please be careful to prevent swirl marks on black cars by following these 10 tips:
1. Always use a clay cleaning bar before polishing. This is more important if the paint surface still feels rough to you after washing. Remember that clay is a very gentle abrasive. Its role is to remove stubborn surface contaminants.
2. A hard and inflexible backing plate on your orbital tool will not work well on vehicle contours. This will leave some parts unfinished. A hard backing plate may also make a buffing pad too aggressive on the clear coat.
3. Don’t go for a very high pile buffing pad, without due reason. Use them only for grinding away the most annoying, deep scratches.
4. Using an interface pad on the orbital tool compensates for uneven pressure application.
5. Try to check if you can get the scratches and marks with a lower RPM setting on the rotary orbital tools. Remember, faster may not always be better. Don’t overheat and burn “into” the car’s clear coat.
6. Don’t put excessive pressure while polishing and buffing. Usually, a pressure of about 2 pounds is enough. Only deep scratches need you to push harder into them.
7. Never ever dry buff. Prime your buffing pad with polish. Cover its main surface and sides to ensure that you have adequate polish on it to reach everywhere.
8. Always use clean dust-free buffing pads. Remember, it’s the fine gritty sand and dust that causes swirl marks. Don’t ruin the clear coat by using a dirty buffing pad.
9. Never attempt to polish a vehicle that hasn’t been washed just moments before. You can’t expect to avoid swirls if you polish even a few hours after you washed a car. You have to polish immediately after washing and drying.
10. Never use a buffing pad for compounding or a compounding pad for polishing. Dedicate and demarcate your pads. This is why polishing, compounding, buffing, and waxing pads are color-coded. Follow a set regime and do not deviate from it. Remain aware that the color black is unforgiving.
Ah! That sexy and appealing look of a black car rolling out from the showroom. There was a time when maintaining that look could be a full-time job. Not anymore. Car color care technology has improved by leaps and bounds.
Several compounding, polishing, waxing, and coating kits focus on black automobiles. Special color enhancing chemicals are used in them. These products even out the tint and bring out a vibrant black base coat.
You will find out more about the best wax to use on black cars if you stay with us. We will provide comparisons of the top-selling and best-rated car care products for black cars.
1- Wash and use a clay bar to thoroughly decontaminate the car surface.
2- Dry the car using a leaf blower (if it’s handy) or use the procedure detailed for black cars.
3- Apply compound polish by hand or with an appropriate clean pad and tool. Work on the most visible scratches. Some compounds don’t need polish afterward. They cover both.
4- Apply a special polish for black or dark colored cars, using a fine pad. You can do this by hand, but it’s better to use a dual-action orbital power tool. Polishing also removes oxidation and water spots.
5- Apply a special glaze for black cars. The glaze is wonderful in hiding swirl marks. Or, you can apply a glass coating. Meguiar’s makes a glaze that also serves as a synthetic sealant.
6- Protect the topcoat and glaze by applying a sealant. The sealant also lends a vibrant glow to the color. This can last for up to a year. Another option is a ceramic coating. It also gives super strong protection to a black car. It is antistatic and hydrophobic. But, a ceramic coating is very difficult to apply. It needs a lot of care. A ceramic coating can take up to a week to bond. So, it is best applied in a professional setting. On the other hand, you can apply sealant and wax on top of any coating used.
7- Now for the mirror finish, coat, and buff the sealant with high-quality wax for black cars. These waxes come in all forms. If you can find the time to apply twice a month, then go for a spray-on wax. It’s very quick and easy to apply. Otherwise, liquid wax for black cars will give you a 6 to 8-week cover. Paste-based wax is tougher and will keep the mirror finish for months.
8- Remember to always use a proper wax stripper before reapplying a fresh coat of wax on your car.
9- Admire your reflection in the car and pat yourself on the back for a job well done. You’ll be the envy of your friends, neighbors, and colleagues.
A black car is a dust magnet. Not because other cars are any less so. It’s because dust shows up in stark contrast to the black background.
Depending on environmental conditions, you can see a thin layer of dust like a film within an hour of waxing your car. Light rain will show up as whitish dots as soon as it dries up. What to say about bird droppings or splashes from roadside puddles?
The best way to keep your black car clean is to protect it with an anti-static, hydrophobic, self-cleaning coating. High performance detailing sprays are the quickest and most effective way to do this.
Simply spray the product on the car and gently wipe it off in gentle, straight single strokes with a good quality microfiber cloth. Make sure you have plenty of them available. You don’t want to use dirty fabric again unless you have washed it well.
Never ever attempt to dry wipe a black car. Dry wipes are like fine sandpaper. They sound like a death knell for the surface finish and gloss on black vehicles. You can use a pressure washer on a car that is treated with a detailing spray.
Most people are confused about how to maintain the pristine looks of black automobiles. I hope that after reading this article you are not one of them. Following the guidelines and tips offered in this post, you can live a stress-free life, while owning a black vehicle.
Let your black car do the talking for you, and earn the admiration of everyone who happens to see your car.
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Happy driving! …. Smile…. You have one more reason to 🙂