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My Model 3 Cleaning Regimen (Takes about 40 mins)

Trevorlaird

Member
Sep 11, 2019
34
26
Comox , BC
So I have been trying my best to keep the car clean and protected over the first month of ownership. Due to the west coast rain and water spots I have switched over to cleaning the car in my garage. I made this video going over my cleaning method and the products that I have found work best with the car! Noted Products: Rain X water less wash $5-10 Baby Wipes $3 Microfiber Cloths $5-10 Bug scrubber $3

PS: No advertising or anything , I am making these because community videos really helped in the buying process.

 

TheTonester

Member
Sep 12, 2019
198
101
Delaware
A few questions:
No swirl marks using this method?
If I was to rinse with water first, would I need to let the car dry before doing this routine?
Baby wipes work well on all the interior surfaces?
Thanks! I may give this a try.
 

Fernand

Active Member
Mar 22, 2019
1,574
1,719
Northern california
It's great that everyone thinks "their" method merits a video. Not being sarcastic.

I guess "the competition" is taking aim at the ONR market. ONR and ONRW (with a little carnauba) are very versatile as they don't come pre-diluted, so they can be diluted differently for different purposes. Also very economical, typically 15ml (1/2 Oz) per gallon of water. Keep that baby clean!
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camalaio

Active Member
May 28, 2019
1,483
2,181
Vernon, BC, Canada
What do you do when it gets really dirty? Do you still go through the same process and don't get any scratches?

You might like having really strong and tired hands with that sprayer, but just in case you don't, look for something like this: https://www.amazon.ca//dp/B07R9WMSPM

I use the above sprayer with Optimum No Rinse (ONR) as a sort of pre-soak to capture the dirt and dust. If it's really dirty or gritty I pressure wash off the bulk of the dirt first, but I'm not sure how this is going to work for winter (way more grit and dirt, but I don't have somewhere to hook up when it's freezing without risking the pipe freezing). I tried ONR on a really dirty old car and despite my care, scratched the hell out of it. So the pre-rinse seems necessary if very dirty.
 

Fernand

Active Member
Mar 22, 2019
1,574
1,719
Northern california
No question that SOMETHING must be done to remove the abrasive heavy soil before using a no-rinse product like ONR. They don't say that honestly and clearly enough in their promotional materials. Rinsing off the car at a coin-op place, pulling it out and doing the ONR bit right there is one way.

I just hose it off in the driveway, then use a gallon garden sprayer with ONRW in distilled water - that displaces the mineral-laden water. Then microfiber rags soaked in ONRW + Distilled water, and dry with microfiber towels. Distilled water, at about $1 a gallon, really helps minimize water spotting.
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Fernand

Active Member
Mar 22, 2019
1,574
1,719
Northern california
I'm a carnauba wax lover. Nothing quite as liquescent as layers of buffed paste wax, right?

But, shiver me timbers, washing with ONR+W in distilled water and drying with a microfiber over a spritz of Opti Seal per panel is even better because 1) the gloss that develops looks surprisingly as wet and deep as carnauba, and 2) the effort is minimal. And it seems an 8oz bottle will easily handle 2 cars for a year.

Even with all the rain and winds and flying sandy debris of late, that Model 3 just sits there like it was dipped in lacquer. And dirt easily dusts right off. I don't know or care how Opti Seal would "hold up" if the car was abandoned in some test desert, because I always spray on a bit with the drying towel after an ONR+W wash. And those happen "as needed".

But it seems like every time I do the ONR+W ritual and dry with the Opti Seal, it adds more of something like an intrinsic gloss. If a car's clear coat is in decent shape it looks a lot like a buffed fresh coat of carnauba wax. Uncanny. And this is coming from an old school carnauba fanatic, with no ties to Optimum.

On a 13 year old car with a neglected finish, Opti Seal is still good, but I think paste wax shines better, probably by filling in the surface pitting.
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derekmw

Member
Oct 3, 2016
629
926
San Diego, CA
Wow there's a lot of bad advice in this video. Everything is wrong from the products to the methods, to the swirling motion you use while cleaning your paint. What a disaster.
Haha, yeah, I was cringing watching him in the first section when he starts cleaning. yikes...

If you want to use these, as someone asked, it's probably best to just take it to a brushless car wash to remove the bigger particles that will scratch the car. Also, I can't tell (or I just skimmed past it) from his video but it looked like he was using some cheap micro-fiber cloths. You really need to use a high quality one.
 

cucubits

Active Member
May 17, 2019
1,718
1,747
TX
Haha, yeah, I was cringing watching him in the first section when he starts cleaning. yikes...

If you want to use these, as someone asked, it's probably best to just take it to a brushless car wash to remove the bigger particles that will scratch the car. Also, I can't tell (or I just skimmed past it) from his video but it looked like he was using some cheap micro-fiber cloths. You really need to use a high quality one.

I have to agree, this is a great way to scratch your paint.

I like Larry's approach (from Ammo NYC) to waterless washes. His frothe solution really seems to protect the paint best from scratches if used correctly.
 

Bill Foster

I'm going home!
Mar 6, 2019
909
847
Nashville
No question that SOMETHING must be done to remove the abrasive heavy soil before using a no-rinse product like ONR. They don't say that honestly and clearly enough in their promotional materials. Rinsing off the car at a coin-op place, pulling it out and doing the ONR bit right there is one way.

.

As someone who used ONR and ONRW exclusively on a corrected black Mustang for 3+ years, you are wrong.

The car had no swirls after I corrected it, and didnt have any when I traded it in.

Obviously if you dont follow the steps you might do it wrong and scratch the paint, but I didnt have that issue.
 

Apprunner

Member
Jul 2, 2019
549
656
So-cal
A rinseless works great with the right method. I use a pre soak the car in ONR and use the Gary Dean method with 10-15 towels. Never really had an issue with swirls. I actually find using a hose to be faster overall but both turn out great results.
 

Fernand

Active Member
Mar 22, 2019
1,574
1,719
Northern california
As someone who used ONR and ONRW exclusively on a corrected black Mustang for 3+ years, you are wrong.

Wrong about what? About a pre-rinse??? What's wrong with a pre-rinse? You mean you're going directly whole hog ONR with a sponge even if the car is covered in abrasive dirt? I can't see the point unless you want to prove something.

Easiest is to gently hose off the abrasive dirt, and THEN start up with ONRW in a gallon of distilled water, spraying it on starting on top and down the sides. That gets rid of all the mineralized water you pre-rinsed with, and leaves your starting ONR solution. Then whatever ONR method you prefer: one bucket, or two of ONRW, or just multiple microfibers soaked in ONRW + Distilled water. Then dry with good waffle weave microfiber towels, adding little sprays of Opti-Seal. Done.

My black Model 3 looks just fine. Here it's just been driven 60 miles on the freeways, and 65 more on secondary 2 lane dusty roads to arrive at historic Columbia, CA in the old gold country. After getting home (another 125 miles) we didn't ONR it for a couple of days, because it looked pretty much like this, it didn't even need a pre-rinse. Not much sticks to ONRW + Opti Seal.

2019_Columbia2.jpg
 
Last edited:

derekmw

Member
Oct 3, 2016
629
926
San Diego, CA
Wrong about what? About a pre-rinse??? What's wrong with a pre-rinse? You mean you're going directly whole hog ONR with a sponge even if the car is covered in abrasive dirt? I can't see the point unless you want to prove something.

Easiest is to gently hose off the abrasive dirt, and THEN start up with ONRW in a gallon of distilled water, spraying it on starting on top and down the sides. That gets rid of all the mineralized water you pre-rinsed with, and leaves your starting ONR solution. Then whatever ONR method you prefer: one bucket, or two of ONRW, or just multiple microfibers soaked in ONRW + Distilled water. Then dry with good waffle weave microfiber towels, adding little sprays of Opti-Seal. Done.

My black Model 3 looks just fine. Here it's just been driven 60 miles on the freeways, and 65 more on secondary 2 lane dusty roads to arrive at historic Columbia, CA in the old gold country. After getting home (another 125 miles) we didn't ONR it for a couple of days, because it looked pretty much like this, it didn't even need a pre-rinse. Not much sticks to ONRW + Opti Seal.

View attachment 510389

I was confused with his reply too. I think he thought you were saying doing this will cause swirls...but no one said that, someone else just posted the question on whether this causes swirls. I think he confused your response.

I said the same as you, I think it's best to do a wash (there's many brushless car was places) to get off most of the grime and then you can use these waterless cleaning systems to gently get the car clean but NOT in swirl motions. lol, the directions are clear on how to clean properly so as not to 'rub' any existing dirt onto the paint.
 

xyxx

Member
Nov 3, 2019
64
127
area 51
ive taken my car to one of those waterless car washes and it came back swirled all over. never again. I strictly use ONR + 2 bucket method + MF towels. Rinse the car off first. I think distilled water is a little OD as ive never experienced water spots. I also wash and dry panel by panel so that probably mitigates it
 

Fernand

Active Member
Mar 22, 2019
1,574
1,719
Northern california
@xyxx were you in the car as they did it? Or did they drag your beast to some washing pit?

OD? I think it all depends on the water that comes out o' yer tap. If there are enough minerals dissolved, they will deposit, unless you dry to a Sahara level, just like at the bottom of the teakettle, only in lovely drop-sized little microscopic craters called "water-spots", although it has nothing to do with water itself ;-)

SO, to avoid having to measure your tap water or think about it, and not even have to really dry to a Sahara, $1 of distilled water from a gallon jug with 1:256 ONRW, i.e. 15 ml or 1 tablespoon, will do the whole car. Including spraying to pre-soak and chase away evil minerals, then keep spraying onto fresh microfiber towelettes to wash.

The pass with drying towels and a bit of Opti Seal is interesting with ONRW. Normally you have to almost buff a bit as you get it fully dried. I think it's because of the tiny wax residue. But just like they show, a little spritz of Opti Seal, and the towel glides as it dries effortlessly. Any residual dampness miraculously sets within a minute into a glorious carnauba-looking gloss. Way cool.
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