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Old 10-05-2009, 07:48 PM   #1
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HARD water...what is the cure

So i live out in the monterey bay area in cali and well... the water here is hard as hell... if any dries on the car it is a ******************** to get off... also it makes it damn near impossible to get a spot free shine are there any tips out there to fix this? also i have tried so many different rags towels etc and none of them absorb the water effectively in time
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Old 10-05-2009, 08:12 PM   #2
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Move somewhere that has soft water! :-) There is no perfect cure. There are a few devices that remove the minerals and soften the water. They are kinda expensive but might be worth it if the problem is that bad. As for towels, I find that a water blade to remove the majority and some microfibers to do the detail work seems to do well. However around here the water is so soft I could let it dry on its own without spotting.

Also make sure that your washing in the shade or when it is cool *cloudy, night, dawn* to prevent the water from drying too fast. You could also put up a pop-tent to shade the car when your washing. It sounds like a PITA but prevents the elbow grease of removing water spots. Which by the way, detailing clay takes care of those easily, but requires waxing afterward as a minimum.
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Old 10-05-2009, 08:38 PM   #3
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944 has the answer - wash your car at dusk or in the shade. Otherwise, especially on a dark car, you'll never get the water off in time. My wife's Jeep is black, and if I try to wash it during the day, it looks like absolute crap. I can't wash it fast enough to keep the water from drying on the part I do first.
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Old 10-06-2009, 01:12 AM   #4
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You should be able to dry it quickly if you rinse properly. You have to take the sprayer off of the hose and then rinse with the hose close to the car. This causes a sheeting action. Then a small towel will dry the entire car.
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Old 10-06-2009, 03:32 AM   #5
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Griots garage makes an insanely expensive filtering car wash system. The Mr. Clean unit that came out a couple years ago works on a similar principle for a bout a third of the cost, you might want to google it and see what peeps are saying.
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Old 10-06-2009, 04:18 AM   #6
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Soft Water

I put in a whole house water softener for obvious reasons. I then had the plumber hook up two outdoor faucets. One has untreated water for the lawn, garden, etc. The other goes through the softener to provide water for car washing. I washed the Box yesterday and in addition to using the leaf blower to dry the wheels, I also blew the excess water off the entire body before drying with microfiber towels.
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Old 10-06-2009, 04:38 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainObvious
You should be able to dry it quickly if you rinse properly. You have to take the sprayer off of the hose and then rinse with the hose close to the car. This causes a sheeting action. Then a small towel will dry the entire car.
Yeah, I've read about using that technique. I tend to do the opposite: As I progress with the car washing/rinsing, I keep wetting down the areas that I've already rinsed, so that it doesn't dry. When I'm done, I use a chamois---a technique that some advocate and some (including our resident expert in the area of detailing, Perfectlap) condemn. As long as it's a quality chamois (and replaced from time to time), I've used them year after year with (far as I can tell) no adverse effects on the finish. I don't seem to have water spot problems. Two things that might come into play in my case: (1) I live in Ohio, and it's obviously not as hot and dry as it is in southern California; and (2) while our water is moderately hard, it may be less so than yours.

Though there's clearly more work involved, I would also think that you could do the following after washing: Take a quality microfiber towel, spray it with a quick detail product (I use Optimum No Rinse) to the point of being moist, and quickly wipe down the finish. I would think that would remove spots as long as they hadn't baked in the sun for too long.

Also, regarding claying. There's a clay made by Sonus (don't remember the name of it, but it's light green in color) that is soft/gentle enough not to adversely affect the wax. Ie, one that would remove the spots without removing the wax.
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Old 10-06-2009, 06:05 AM   #8
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CLR and Limeaway will remove hard water spots. You might try a final wipe with some of the product.
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Old 10-06-2009, 06:06 AM   #9
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Clr

Use a diluted amount of CLR on your spots and problem areas. Spray it on and just rinse it off. I don't know if you have that product in your area. It's common here. We have high levels of lime in our water. I use it for lots of different applications. I found out that it rinses off hard water spots 10 years ago. If anyone else has used this with success, chime in!

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Old 10-06-2009, 06:09 AM   #10
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Just google "hard water car wash". I found thousands of responses. Here is one.

"I went down to Home Depot and picked up a 3-gallon commercial spray bottle. I filled it with distilled water, and I used the distilled water as a final rinse after rinsing the car with tap water. I used about 1 1/2 gallons (about $1.50 worth of water) and there was not one water spot on the whole car!"



http://www.nsxprime.com/forums/showthread.php?t=6928
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Old 10-06-2009, 11:26 AM   #11
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Thanks all for the advice there is definitely some good stuff in this thread. As far as water softeners I'm not sure I can afford some complex system but the distilled water idea may be a good. Route along with someclr to remove spots alread there
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Old 10-06-2009, 12:28 PM   #12
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try washing with optimum no rinse instead of a hose wash. You'll unfortunately need to go down to wal-mart and get some of that cheap water they sell to you where you fill up your own container. I guess you'll need to be a little more economical with the amount of water you use. Generally two ounces of No Rinse solutions is used with one gallon of water. That's plenty to wiped down the car.

as far as rain, that could be tricky but I recommend the following:
after claying the car use an acrylic paste wax. I use FK1 1000P. It dries like cement. I use at least two coats for max coverage. Once it dries use a polymer spray like FK1 #425 frequently. It provides a very slippery surface that might be tricky for droplets to bond to.

here's another Optimum product

LINK
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Last edited by Perfectlap; 10-06-2009 at 12:47 PM.
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Old 10-06-2009, 02:17 PM   #13
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How bad is it to take my car through the laserwash?
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Old 10-06-2009, 04:58 PM   #14
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2 weeks ago Big Lots had shelves of the Mr. Clean starter systems for 4 bucks each. I used one in Sedona on my black benz and didn't have a spot for 6 washes. Just let it air dry too. And Sedona has the hardest water I have ever seen. I cleaned off an entire shelf at big lots. Hopefully a 10 year supply.
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Old 10-06-2009, 05:30 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thehighheelsgirl
How bad is it to take my car through the laserwash?
if it has the jets that spray directly at your doors you might want to stuff a towel in the slats of the air intake to keep any soap and water out.

car wash detergent is really not good for the canvas top. You have to use Raggtopp cleanser for that. The car wash soap attracts dust and breaks down the canvas.
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Old 10-06-2009, 09:03 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by der Geist
2 weeks ago Big Lots had shelves of the Mr. Clean starter systems for 4 bucks each. I used one in Sedona on my black benz and didn't have a spot for 6 washes. Just let it air dry too. And Sedona has the hardest water I have ever seen. I cleaned off an entire shelf at big lots. Hopefully a 10 year supply.

$ 5. at CVS pharmacy here in So.CA
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Old 10-06-2009, 10:03 PM   #17
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What is this Mr Clean product? I don't own ANYTHING to wash cars with, so if I try I'd be starting from scratch.
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Old 10-07-2009, 05:15 AM   #18
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Its a cleaning system that you put on the end of a garden hose. It comes with detergent and a replaceable filter. They say to replace the filter after 3 uses but as I said, I have gotten 6 out of them.
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Old 10-07-2009, 07:55 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thehighheelsgirl
What is this Mr Clean product? I don't own ANYTHING to wash cars with, so if I try I'd be starting from scratch.
1-two one gallon buckets (home depot)
2-On Bottle Optimum NoRinse
3- wheel face brush
4-1Z leather cleaner
5-12-20 microfiber towels (at least) and drying towel
6-Sponge (home depot grout sponges are fine)
7-soft brush to clean the top
8-Raggtopp kit (for the top)
9-bottle of plexus (if you have plastic window, works on headlights and windscreen)
10-one gallon of FK1 #425 (cleans dash, glass, paint touch up, wheels)
11-long brush to reach under the car.
12- spoke brush to clean the wheel barrel and spokes
13-Armor All Tire Foam (just bought this works well)...Pep Boys
14-a good cleaning wax (Klasse just to keep it simple).

I'm not recommending car wash soap because you really don't need it. The No Rinse solution mixed into a bucket of water will do the job unless you drive through mud. wiped down the car with a sponge and then use the wheel brush with the water that's left to brush off the wheels and tires. Spray the car down with 425 and you're done (I recommend this spray bottle). I can do all of this in 15 minutes. If I get out the car wash soap and hose that's a lot longer and too much bucket and hose wash wrecks the paint.
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Last edited by Perfectlap; 10-07-2009 at 05:10 PM.
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Old 10-07-2009, 02:51 PM   #20
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Alright, Perfectlap, tell me more about No-Rinse...

I gather that I dont pre-wet the car. I get my solution of No-Rinse and water, dip a microfiber towel in it and wipe down the car. I then just dry it with another Microfiber towel and I am done????

Seems too simple.

Is this accurate?
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