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I bought a black '05 ZX5 a few weeks ago and am having a hard time keeping it clean. Right now I take it to the car wash about once a week and do a wash, rinse, spray on wax and spot-free rinse. Then by the time I drive home with it, it has some water spots, and a dull look on the hood and front bumper.
 

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First..., you will not keep black clean for any length of time(ya wanna know how I know that, LOL!!)

Second..., using an auto wash wile you describes is usually bad for te paint, as you can see the shine fasing.

A lot of those washes contain very harsh chemicals to remove the dirt, oil, grease, brake dust, road grime, etc, etc. which can and will dull the finish over time, some faster than others depending on how the wash is set and how diluted the chemicals are (or not).

Think about this..., if you are in the back yard with a hose and car wash, your car will not come clean without "aggitation" (wash mitt).

The reason?
Most car washes are gentle to the paint (most).

For an automatic car wash to "work" without aggitation, it needs to use a harsh chemical to clean.
Knowing this, also realize it will strip any protectants, sealants or wax off the paint over a very short period of time (even one wash in many cases).

It also seems as though the water filters the car wash uses are worn out, as it is leaving spots (many use a DI filtering system, however, if the filters are old or worn, obviously it will leave spots).

I would recommend washing at home if possible, then polishing with a good, high quality polish and wax such as Einszett (it is very concentrated, lasts a very long time, easy to apply and remove, and dollar for dollar, a much better investment than any of the local brands.
(It is one of those things where you have to try it out to believe the difference)
Try a search on the forum for Einszett and microfiber.

Hope this helps...
 

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Great..First I had a high maintenance wife...now I have a high maintenance paint finish. It's a labor of love...just keep telling myself that.

So which is the color you can neglect and it still looks great?
 

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get a mr clean auto washer it works great on my black 02 get a soft wash mit . and the filter in the washer keeps spots from showing up. also try to wash in shade
 

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I dunno, in a Focus Arizona Beige might take the cake... it doesn't show sand or dust or anything!

And as for the Mr Clean thing, I'm not personally fond of it. It strips the wax, so you can't just use it a for a wash, unless you wax your car everytime you wash it. The reason it prevents water spots is cause the wax is gone, hence why the water "sheets" off, like on an old unwaxed car.
 

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i'm deathly afraid of taking my car thru an automated car wash, i always do it at home. but it seems like once i take it out of the garage its dirty again. thank goodness for the "California Car Duster" i swear its god's gift to black car owners. . .
 

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BAD EGG
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It's wierd because here in Korea most cars are black and they always look great. They don't really take care of them but I think that they might have an assload of clear coat on them. Is that something that could lead to a better looking black finish? I'm always jealous when I see their black cars.
 

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Capital Obvious
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beatfocie said:
also try to wash in shade

VERY good to do. I have black and washed in the sun the 1st time....had water spots right after the rinse. Had to re spray the car and dry it to get ride if them. I also use the EagleOne Wax-as-you dry in between real waxing.
 

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OMG washing in direct sunlight is Bad News... aside from the water spots you can scald yourself just touching the paint! And forget waxing in the sunlight, you can see the wax hiss and steam come off the car as it gets baked on, no good!

My car's the dark blue color, it's got all the bad qualities of black for cleanliness and heat attraction just with a different hue to it!
 

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Lil PZEV said:
OMG washing in direct sunlight is Bad News... aside from the water spots you can scald yourself just touching the paint! And forget waxing in the sunlight, you can see the wax hiss and steam come off the car as it gets baked on, no good!

My car's the dark blue color, it's got all the bad qualities of black for cleanliness and heat attraction just with a different hue to it!
I know how ya feel.
 

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*I only read the first post*

I have a black 02 svt I wash it 4 times a week and wax it once a week. I dont know if thats good or bad, but it keeps my mind off the 1st gear bogging and on the sleek shine of the exterior!
 

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Black looks good on almost any car but it's such a pain. I had a black MR2 and after that experience I will never own another black car. I did park it in a garage, but that doesn't stop dust and any other airborne crud from settling on the car anyway and black really shows that bad. Black cars are clean only as you're washing it; so enjoy that time together! [:D] I can distinctly recall cursing even the slightest breeze as I dried my car off after washing it, because the car was literally getting dusty/dirty before I had even finished the process of washing it.
 
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