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Thread: Cleaning and car care.

  1. #1

    Smile Cleaning and car care.

    There is more written on this subject on the net than is possible to begin to read, so I thought it might be good to have a little section on car care here. Since we will all be using the best stuff we can find, this thread will be a 'best of the best' in effect.

    The leather interior of the Z8 is extraordinary, it is everywhere, from the top of the windscreen, to the bottom of the foot well to the toneau cover in back, and it needs food and care in the hot summer sun. I have been feeding the leather in my cars for years, and generally find about once every six months is good to keep it in tip top shape in the hardtops.

    The Z8 is my first convertible, and my first car to have matt leather, which I'm not a great fan of. Thus I have been feeding the leather on the car every couple of months to see if it will pick up more of a luster, and make up for the lack of a protective roof. After about 6 or so applications in a year it is looking the way I always thought it should.

    I have used the two products shown below to feed it. I usually do this in the sun, as it heats up the surface, allowing the leather to soak in the food more easily. I then put it back in the garage, and allow the stuff to soak in for a while longer. Finally after a day or so I just wipe it over with a soft dry cloth.

    This shot is taken after a second application in two weeks, the interior looks as if it has been lifted from a '50s - '60s classic Ferrari or Maserati. Personally I think it really suits the car well.
     
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  2. #2

    You can get them at any good car supply store.

    A few folks have recently pointed out to me that the new leather impregnators and coatings that BMW are using in their hides are silicon based, and these classic hide foods don't have the chemical needed to preserve silicon.

    They recommend using BMW's own leather cleaner for our Z8's leather as it is designed to work with the silicon. I have tried it, and it doesn't give as rich a luster, but I guess it is what one should use. These products are available at your local BMW dealer.

    I am curious to see if there is another silicon friendly hide food out there that will increase and maintain a deep glossy luster. Having seen the car fully polished up I really prefer the interior in gloss. It adds so much drama to the appearance of the car.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  3. #3

    Thumbs up P21s and Griot's Orbital Polisher

    I realize the Zaino Bros. polish and wax have become the darlings of this Z8 board, but I thought I'd offer an alternative based on my experience.

    After reading a comprehensive report on car waxes, I decided to try P21S (I'm a carnauba kind of guy). The results were startling! It gave my silver Z8 the shiniest finish I have ever seen; it actually glows! And it is the easiest wax I've ever used; goes on like a dream and wipes off with virtually no effort. Best of all, it is essentially clear so it does not leave any residue behind or stain rubber trim pieces. Truly amazing stuff!

    I am aware that synthetics, like the Zaino Bros. products, will last longer before you need to reapply them, but unless your Z8 is subjected to daily driving conditions I don't think this is much of a concern. Besides, P21S is a very long-lasting wax. My primary goal in waxing my car is to make it shine and this is where P21S beats out everything else on the market, including the Zaino Bros. products, according to that wax test.

    The other thing I've noticed with the Zaino Bros. stuff is that the application process seems to be a bit complicated, not to mention time-consuming and laborious. I've also read complaints from Zaino devotees about bug stains being difficult to remove. P21S is so easy to apply and remove, you won't even break a sweat and it does not require any waiting time between steps. I don't know if the bug problem is unique to the Zaino finish, or if it is typical of synthetics in general, but carnauba based waxes, and P21S in particular, are not affected by bug stains: they simply wash right off and leave no trace.

    I'm sure the Zaino Bros. stuff is terrific, but if you want to try an alternative, I highly recommend P21S. It is available from Bavarian Autosport (800-535-2002). Get their paint cleanser ($9.95) for prep work and finish with the wax ($24.95).

    While on the subject of cleaning equipment the Porter Cable Orbital Polisher sold by Griot's Garage is specifically designed to avoid the dreaded polish "burn through" that can happen with an unmodifed polisher. The polishing pads offered by Griot's for use with the polisher are ideal for the job and their 3 stage polishes are extremely effective and absolutely will not damage your paint or clear coat in any way. I have achieved remarkable results with their polishing system and it gets my highest recommendation. You can also use the orbital polisher to apply wax which insures an extremely even coating. (However while I have used Griot's wax products in the past, after trying P21S, I wouldn't recommend them anymore.)

    Thanks to Grease Monkey for this excellent post.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  4. #4
    Team Z8 KenZ8's Avatar
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    Cleaning the Engine bay

    What's the recommended way to clean the dust and grime out of the engine bay? I'm afraid to just powerwash it for fear of getting the electrical components too wet, and there is dust in places that I cannot get my hand or a rag into. Any suggestions?

  5. #5
    Sport Button On - DSC Off jpklecker's Avatar
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    Wink Connolly Hide Care

    The Connolly Hide Care is great stuff! I have used it for years on my 1987 535i and the leather still looks great and still has a nice gloss to it. As a side, I have also used it on some antique leather chairs with equally great success.
    John Klecker - 2002 Topaz / Crema (61782)

  6. #6
    Z8Mania
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    Ken, I'll ask my detailing expert. Andrew, nice cleaning job on the leather. I actually prefer the matte look for our cars but never the less, the job you did in those pictures was outstanding. I would be careful about which leather products you use and how often. I was advised to use only the BMW one for the reasons you said- the others break down some of the protection on the leather and will cause it to crack prematurely. I do a leather cleaning about once a year and just use a slightly damp towel to gently wipe off any dust in between.

  7. #7
    As you can see that first post was from a while back. I've been using the Kiwi Silicone Black shoe polish for the last couple of years, as it has the all right stuff in it for our silicone impregnated leather. It takes me the best part of an afternoon to really get it done right, but that isn't so bad once a year. In between I've been using the Lysol leathercare spary-on, and a quick wipe off.

    Ken, I wouldn't be too worried about the engine bay, I've done a steam clean on one of my Z8's and it worked fine, just keep the jet off the soft stuff, and hit the dirty areas. There are some really good engine bay cleaning solutions out there that you can spray on first too, and those really help. Mothers or McGuires are good brands. If you want to be extra safe your local BMW dealer may also do it for you, especially if you take your service manager a nice bottle of something.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  8. #8
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    Smile

    I suspect you meant Lexol not Lysol!

  9. #9
    Oppps, yep, typing before coffee!!
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

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    New Discovery: maybe someone has done this before - but I spoke with Sal Zanio the other day regarding another matter and he suggested applying his product on the rims of the car to control the brake dust. I have OME rims - I cleand them, applied 2 coats of the Zanio polish and presto no more brake dust!! It just does not stick to the rims!! At least not my rims. I wash my car every 3-4 days and the rims just get hosed off. No more rags and bottle brushes and time required to clean the rims. HOW GREAT!!!

  11. #11
    Z8Mania
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    Which Zaino product is that?

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    The product I used Z-2 Pro Car Polish

  13. #13
    Sport Button On - DSC Off Lupin's Avatar
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    scratches

    My Black Z8 has some very minor minor scratches however the wax alone does not do the job.
    As you know Black is a very delicate color
    Does anybody knows a good product to use?
    I found in the internet products like the gs-27 , but I am afraid to use them.
    Thanks
    Luigi
    2001 blk/red

  14. #14
    Z8 Madness
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lupin View Post
    My Black Z8 has some very minor minor scratches however the wax alone does not do the job.
    As you know Black is a very delicate color
    Does anybody knows a good product to use?
    I use a product from Cyclo Industries, LLC www.cyclo.com Stock No. 06610. It works great. However, I've never used it to polish the entire car (only one or two small areas 2"x2"). You may also consider having her detailed by a pro.

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    2016 Porsche GTS/MT

  15. #15
    Sport Button On - DSC Off gutMD's Avatar
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    I use Griots Machine Polish line with amazing results. For fine swirl marks that are common in darker paints I would use #4 to start.


    http://www.griotsgarage.com/product/11163.do
    ---------------------------------
    Regards,
    Gary
    2002 Topaz // Crema

  16. #16
    Team Z8 zilver8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2001bmwz8 View Post
    The product I used Z-2 Pro Car Polish
    This works great on the wheels... brake dust washes off very easily... no other cleaner is needed... just use the same product you wash the car with to clean the wheels. Lasts a long time also.

  17. #17
    Team Z8 zilver8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lupin View Post
    My Black Z8 has some very minor minor scratches however the wax alone does not do the job.
    As you know Black is a very delicate color
    Does anybody knows a good product to use?
    I found in the internet products like the gs-27 , but I am afraid to use them.
    Thanks
    Luigi
    2001 blk/red
    The Menzerna line of polishes is very good. The guys on Autopia.org have good reviews of their products. I have used the "final polish" to remove minor scratches. You will need a machine like a porter cable as it's almost impossible to remove the scratches by hand.

    Here's a link to the Menzerna line...

    http://www.properautocare.com/mengerbespol.html

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    Day 8 - no wheel dust with Zanio polish. I wash my car every 3-4 days because I can not stand looking at the wheels - have not washed my car in 8 days. We have had beautiful weather for Texas. Thanks Sal Zanio!!

  19. #19
    Sport Button On - DSC Off Lupin's Avatar
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    detailing

    Thank you guys
    I'll take a look , does anyone knows "quixx"?

    meanwhile take a look a this 12,000 $ car wash!!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PkmZveqyU5E

    Luigi
    2001 blk/red

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    P21S - I am a fan of this product. Not only is the wax easy on and off, but the shine is great. But it is the paint cleaner that is out of this world. I used the paint cleaner and I removed about 99% of the blemishes on the rocker panels, underneath carriage, front bumper and front air dam. It even blended in many rock chips so that the paint bleneded into the chip. It also fixed a bad blemish on my passenger front fender that was scratched. It took about 80% of that scratch away. Try it and you will be amazed at what a little elbow grease and this cleaner will do to remove all your blemishes.
    Zed0037

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  21. #21
    Sport Button On - DSC Off gutMD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by briandilley View Post
    P21S - I am a fan of this product. Not only is the wax easy on and off, but the shine is great. But it is the paint cleaner that is out of this world. I used the paint cleaner and I removed about 99% of the blemishes on the rocker panels, underneath carriage, front bumper and front air dam. It even blended in many rock chips so that the paint bleneded into the chip. It also fixed a bad blemish on my passenger front fender that was scratched. It took about 80% of that scratch away. Try it and you will be amazed at what a little elbow grease and this cleaner will do to remove all your blemishes.
    Which product are you referring too?
    ---------------------------------
    Regards,
    Gary
    2002 Topaz // Crema

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    Gary: here is the specific link to the paint cleaner product http://www.p21s.com/products/bis_pc.html . I was totally amazed with this product. After awhile I wasn't sure if my eyes weren't playing a trick on me, but all my little road chips disappeared, and the fix it did for my front air dam on the bottom front edge was simply amazing. The rocker panels underneath are as unblemished as the top body work now!
    Zed0037

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    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  23. #23
    Sport Button On - DSC Off gutMD's Avatar
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    Thanks Brian,

    I only use P21S concours wax on both my Porsche and Z8 and just love the way the german paint accepts the wax. The resulting shine is remarkably super slick and elbow-deep.

    I do have some minor imperfections on my Z8 that might benefit from this product.

    How did you apply it to the car? By hand? Buffer? I'm always super careful with the car as the clearcoat is quite soft?

    Do you know if it contains abrasives?
    ---------------------------------
    Regards,
    Gary
    2002 Topaz // Crema

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    Gary: I used a microfiber cloth and elbow grease. I don't use any orbital or mechanical polishers on my Z either. Just the cloth, lots of hand rubbing and of course the secret sauce.
    Zed0037

    #60217 Silver/Crema
    Built 07/2000

    #60037 Silver / Red
    Built 01/2000 (Former Owner)

    Daily Driver
    2014 Range Rover Sport Supercharged
    All blacked out, 21" wheels, chipped to 560hp

    Hobby car 2009 Z4, dual exhaust, 19" M3 wheels

  25. #25
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    +1 for Connolly hide care. Some of the best stuff I have ever used on any of my cars.

  26. #26
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    Best Wax?

    Notice posts are from a few years ago....P21s still the recommendation?

    Kevin

  27. #27
    I still have some P21 in the garage, but since meeting the Mothers brothers thru Ian, and getting so much support from them I've been pretty much all Mothers all the time. I really do like their stuff, but honestly I think all polishes will do a great job if you take the time and care to make sure that your car is clean and dust free before polishing. The rubbing clay bars really do remove a lot of junk, and add an extra sparly smooth shine, but you pretty much have to commit a whole day to that process.

    For the leather I've swithched to Kiwi Silicone boot polish, because it is designed for silicone impregnated leather like ours. I do that once a year on a hot day, and it takes a couple of hours for the whole interior.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  28. #28
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    Is that a clear boot polish, or is it black?

  29. #29
    Z8Mania
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    FWIW one of my local car buddies swears by the Chemical Guys products:

    http://www.chemicalguys.com/

    I have no experience with this stuff but he does and his cars always look GOOD.

  30. #30
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    I'm still a fan of Zaino. It's easy to to apply, looks amazing, and it lasts for ages.

    However, I've given up trying to keep the exterior detailed myself. So, whatever my detail guy uses is fine with me.
    thegunguy

  31. #31
    All this talk got me checking out leather specialists, and I think I may try the silicone stuff these guys have, looks a lot easier to apply than the Kiwi - http://www.fiebing.com/Leather_Care.aspx
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  32. #32
    Z8Mania
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    I like Zaino also. And their speed shine is called "Z8" !

    Funny Rifle, I just do the exterior and leave the interior to the pros!

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    On the subject of the BMW Z8 matt leather and contrary to Andrew I just love the matt look and have been experimenting for almost as long as I have the car with different products to try and get rid of the shine. At last I have found one which quite miraculously restores a dull matt finish with a light rub and warm water. Perhaps you know about it but for me it is a revelation. I have done both my M3 and Maserati 4200 as well and it just doesn't fail. The results are amazing. It is the TRISUN extra high density Magic Sponge Eraser, 10 of which cost around $10. It's just a sponge pad which incredibly lifts any grease which has impregnated the leather and which causes the shine.

    Does anyone else have experience with this product?