Being involved with the detailing community can be something of a double edged sword. Granted, you’ll no doubt be able to bask in the glow of positive comments about the appearance and finish of your particular car, but the attention to detail that’s required to maintain this level is, not to put too fine a point on it, intense. It can also sometimes feel like the whole world is out to get you and your car – let’s face it, your average car journey is fraught with the potential to sully your good work and countless hours spent waxing and polishing!
Nowhere is this detailing dilemma acute than when having a spotless car matters most, at a car show. Of course you can (and no doubt do) spend a considerable amount of time cleaning your pride and joy the day beforehand, but what about the trip itself? Autoglym is exceptionally well placed to help out in this respect, with an impressively diverse portfolio of portable, easy to use products that will have your car looking flawless within minutes of you pitching up at your show of choice. The products listed below have all been tested and painstakingly developed to the highest possible standards, meaning you can use them in complete confidence.
1) Fast Glass
Many of you that have been fortunate enough to have been invited to display cars at prominent shows will no doubt be aware of the principle drawback of said arrangement, sticky, greasy fingers all over your car’s glazing! While in no way harmful to your car’s glass, it’s certainly true that greasy marks and smears can serve to undo all your hard work, while also making the drive back home marginally less pleasant. Luckily Autoglym developed Fast Glass just for this purpose, and it’s an essential product to have at your disposal whenever you go to a car show, able to eat through road grime, sap, oil and bird droppings, without leaving any trace of residue in its wake.
Safe to use on all of your car’s mirrors and windows (including those with aftermarket tinting film), Fast Glass is very simple to use: simply apply a light coating to the glass and spread evenly with a microfibre cloth, then buff to a clear finish. Apply directly to the cloth itself if using Fast Glass for in-car screens and satnavs.
Showing that it’s nothing if not versatile, Fast Glass has also proved to be an effective quick detailer when applied to matt or satin paint finishes, swiftly removing fingermarks and dirt, and all without leaving a glossy finish.
2) Rapid Detailer
Without doubt one of Autoglym’s best known products, Rapid Detailer is a potent tool to have in your detailing armory, mainly as it’s so flexible and easy to utilise. Rapid Detailer makes short work of light dirt and fingerprints, restores shine and even leaves an invisible layer of polymeric protection, while still being safe to use on all exterior surfaces and materials, including rubber, plastic, chrome and glass. It can also be used to clean other, more specialist finishes and coatings, including wraps and vinyl graphics, both of which continue to be hugely popular within the show scene.
When paired with a high end finishing cloth Rapid Detailer makes for a potent tool, one well suited to last minute show preparation. It will have no trouble removing light dirt accumulated on the drive down, can be used within moments, and even functions as an excellent clay bar lubricant. Last but not least, Rapid Detailer can even be used to remove light brake dust from alloy wheels, provided they were spotless when you set off, so good to know if you’ve enjoyed a ‘spirited’ drive down to your show of choice! A truly multifaceted product and one which no committed show-goer should be without.
3) Instant Tyre Dressing
There’s simply no way that you’ll be able to drive your freshly cleaned car to a car show without the tyres picking up a fine layer of dirt, not unless you’re fortunate enough to have access to a trailer and tow vehicle, and where’s the fun in that!? The good news is that dirty tyres don’t take long to sort, the better news is that actually cleaning them can make a disproportionately huge difference to how your car looks overall, and the best news of all is that Autoglym sells a product developed specifically for this task, Instant Tyre Dressing.
Instant Tyre Dressing consists of durable polymer silicone, a carefully formulated solution that’s proven its ability to transform tired, dirty tyres time and time again. Ensure that the sidewall of the tyre in question is free of mud you will haveremoved any old coatings with wheel cleaner as part of your pre-show prep, then evenly apply a generous layer using the spray nozzle at the neck of the bottle. Allow to dry for light sheen, or if you prefer a matt finish, remove the excess with a microfibre cloth.
4) HD Wax
A fully paid up legend within the car cleaning community, there’s a very real chance that you’re already aware of HD Wax and what it’s capable of – you might even have used it yourself. The product of over half a century of careful development, fine tuning and re-formulation, HD Wax is a beautiful mix of polymers, carnauba and microcrystalline waxes, all of which add up to a product that’s able to offer superior resistance to environmental contaminants like salt, detergents, UV light, acid rain, industrial fallout and much else besides.
HD Wax is ideal for use when you pitch up at a show and need to have your car looking its best ASAP, though you will of course have to have removed any contamination beforehand. Utilise the red applicator supplied to apply to clean, dry paintwork in a light circular motion.versatile Doing so will leave a remarkably thin, even layer of wax which can be left to dry for 10-15 minutes before removal with a microfibre cloth.
Another truly multi-faceted Autoglym product, HD Wax is a superb tool to have at your disposal when it comes to ensuring your wheels are in tip-top order. Stunningly designed, high end alloys are one of the cornerstones of the tuned car community nowadays, so using HD Wax to treat them to a protective coat of high gloss wax is certainly worth considering.
5) Bird Dropping Wipes
They might appear innocuous enough (if a little unpleasant), but bird droppings have the potential to leave nasty, hard to remove marks on your cars paintwork. Quite how bad said marks could potentially become largely depends on what the avian pest in question had for lunch and dinner (berries are especially troublesome), but why take the risk? Autoglym has developed a set of handy, single-use wipes just for this eventuality, and as their strap-line states, they are a ‘clean fix for a mucky job.’
Using the Bird Dropping Wipes is very simple, simply apply to the dropping in question and allow their specially developed solution to go to work. Wait for the bird mess to soften before attempting to remove it, as failing to do so can result in scratched paintwork.
6) Active Insect Remover
This is another important weapon in the war on organic contaminants, and one which can make a massive difference to how your car appears. Much like bird droppings, bugs that have lost their fight with your bonnet, bumper or windscreen can have an adverse effect on your paintwork if not removed swiftly and correctly, hence the need for Active Insect Remover.
Active Insect Remover’s real trump card is its ability to create a rich, thick foam when applied to bodywork or trim. This should be left to go to work on the insect remains in question for at least 30 seconds, after which they should be simply wiped off with a soft cloth or, if you have access to water, washed away. Stubborn insect remains may require a second application. If the product dries, buff with a dampened cloth sprayed with Active Insect Remover, and always avoid use on hot surfaces like bonnets.
7) Bumper and Trim Gel
Bumpers, trims and other exterior fixtures fall into the same category as tyres and wheels, meaning that they might appear to be a minor aspect of your car’s exterior, yet they make a massive difference to how it looks overall. They’re also likely to face-off against grime, bugs and tar on your way to the show, hence why Autoglym recommends having a bottle of Bumper and Trim Gel at your disposal.
Bumper and Trim Gel is safe to use on external plastics, vinyl and rubber, including moulded bumpers, grills, casings and much else besides. It doesn’t contain colour dye so can be safely used on unpainted plastics. Apply an even using a polish applicator (or a small paintbrush for intricate parts like grilles), then buff away any excess with a microfibre cloth to combat runs in wet weather.
8) Odour Eliminator
Ok, ok, we admit that there’s a good chance that you’ll have spent some time sorting your interior before you pitch up at the show (particularly if you’ve been invited to display on a stand), but there’s still no point leaving things to chance, not when Odour Eliminator is so fast acting and easy to use. It’s also distinct from the majority of comparable products in that it doesn’t merely mask bad smells, its complex chemical formulation actually breaks them down at a particle level! Odour Eliminator is fast acting and especially good at tackling the odours left by smoke and spilt food and drink, so it’s ideal if some ‘former friends’ have had an accident on the way to the show in question.
Odour Eliminator isn’t merely effective, it’s simplicity personified to use; simply apply sparingly to carpets or fabric trim, then remove overspray with a clean cloth. Its specially formulated makeup will go to work immediately, working hard to remove nasty smells within minutes and leaving a fresh, neutral smell in its wake.