An exotic car is a highly valuable investment. Its value comes from its exclusivity, uniqueness, and sometimes, age. Appearance also has a lot to do with its prestigious status. When an exotic car’s appearance deteriorates, its value also depreciates. As such, every exotic car owner knows to take great care of their investment.
There’s no need to blow money on expensive cleaning services. A hands-on approach, especially when done regularly, can benefit your exotic car a great deal. Cleaning a unique vehicle model requires a special touch. If you are ready to get your hands dirty, then read these hacks to clean your exotic car.
Use the right products
One way a car is labeled exotic is when it is made with unusual or notably high-grade materials. Because of the special composition of exotic cars, you need to exercise great care when choosing the product for cleaning.
Don’t just pick products that are popular. Learn about the materials used on your car. Some chemicals in common cleaning products may cause more harm than good. When you have done enough research and read your manufacturer’s manual, you can build your supplies by getting the basics:
- Car shampoo
- Leather cleaner and conditioner
- Microfiber towel
- Protectant shine
- Wash mitts
It is not just the right products you need. To clean an exotic car, you also have to use the right technique, so you don’t damage anything. For example, if you drive a Tesla Model S or a BMW i8, you need to learn how to care for their carbon fiber car parts.
Get into corners and crevices with Q-tips
Because of the way many exotic cars are designed, their interiors tend to have plenty of small corners and crevices. You can clean some of these small areas with a foam paint brush, but for truly tiny crannies, q-tips are the way to go. Dab q-tip in cleaning solution and wipe inaccessible areas, like the small logo on the car horn, the buttons on your radio, the rims of meters, etc. Use another q-tip when the dirt accumulates. Wipe the cleaned areas with dry q-tip to remove remaining moisture and other residues.
Prevent oxidation with wax, sealant, or coating
Exotic cars are valued for their appearance, as much as they’re priced for their rareness. Unfortunately, like most cars, they’re also vulnerable to dents, scratches, and oxidation. When heat and oxygen combine, they break down the paint of your car in a process called oxidation. Oxidation deteriorates the paint on your car until it completely dissolves, allowing for the development of rust.
To maintain its shiny paint job, an exotic car needs to get waxed, sealed, or coated. How often do you have to get this done? Wax or sealant is temporary, so it needs monthly reapplication. On the other hand, coating, which is more costly, can last from one to two years. Ultimately, it’s your decision as the car owner over which to choose.
Remove contaminants with a clay bar
Even when you’ve thoroughly washed and wiped your exotic car’s exterior, some microscopic contaminants may be left behind. Why does it matter if they won’t be noticed anyway? The answer is simple. Those teeny dirt particles can build up and result in tiny scratches on the car exterior, causing dullness on the paint job. Fortunately, a clay bar can help with that.
Before you use a clay bar, wash and dry your car first and remove obvious and visible grime. Next, cut a palm-sized piece and squeeze until it’s pliant. Flatten the clay and add some lubricant. Wipe car exterior with the clay as lightly as possible while removing the contaminants. When dirt accumulates, fold and knead the clay until you get a clean side. Remove any residue on the exterior with a microfiber cloth to finish.
Get regular maintenance
You want your exotic car to look good and feel good when you drive it. To get the best of both worlds, you have to regularly maintain your vehicle. There’s no need to visit a technician unless you’re doing a crucial or major change. Some maintenance tasks, like changing the air filter, replacing windshield wipers, and checking tire pressure, are things you can do yourself. Regular maintenance is extremely vital for exotic cars, especially vintage ones. It keeps your car running smoothly and prevents parts from breaking down, which may result in costly repairs.
Exotic cars are all about beauty and performance. That’s why regular cleaning and maintenance is not an option but a necessity for these unique vehicles. As an exotic car owner, you can’t just rely on expensive car services (even if you have the extra cash). Read your manufacturer’s manual, do your research when buying cleaning products, and learn some techniques for maintaining your car. You have to do your part to maintain the value of your prized ride.
Tara is a freelance and contributing writer for Carbon Fiber Gears, leading seller of carbon fiber product for men and women. When she’s not engrossed in a good book, she’s out taking pictures of nature for her private collection.