In Blast’s “Stuff for Your Car” series, you heard me go on about all sorts of maintenance issues and simple upgrades that you can do to keep your car going. We’ve replaced filters, added tints, and even changed the wheels and tires, but today we need to discuss something even more important — keeping all those parts clean and shiny.

And the best part about this article is that you don’t just have to hear me rant about the products I use to keep my car looking good. We are going to give some away — so keep reading.

People can generally be divided into two groups: those who wash their cars, and those who bring their car to the car wash. And, really, the group that brings their car somewhere to be washed can further be divided between the gas station quick wash and the $30 professional “detailer.”

Either way, let me attempt to convince you to get the hose out yourself and take care of business.

Washing your car is simple enough. Use your favorite soap, diluted with water, in a five gallon bucket. Wash, rinse, repeat. Not much of a learning curve.

Once you finish the basic wash, however, you are usually left with clean but dingy tires and a still-dusty interior. We can fix that, without spending $30 every few weeks at the detailer.

I use Armor All products, because you can buy several different products and know that you’re using the same brand throughout your car. When it comes to wheels and tires, I also know that it will work.

Start with the Armor All Extreme Wheel and Tire Cleaner. It looks like a bottle of Windex, only it’s orange. Spray liberally across the tire and wheel, getting all the grooves and nooks. Let it sit for a minute and then use a cotton rag (rags are better than paper towels for the lint factor) to wipe each wheel clean. This product is especially good for chrome or colored rims. My black rims shine up nicely every time.

Next use the Armor All Tire Foam. People always think getting that super-black look from your tires requires a lot of work. Just shake up the can, spray liberally around your tire, and let it sit for a few minutes until the tire is perfectly shiny.

Once inside your car, use a shop vacuum to get all the dust and loose change out. Remove your floor mats, shake them out, and vacuum them separately.

Then there are two more Armor All products I recommend. The simply stated Armor All Original Protectant tends to work like a combination furniture polish and duster. Spray it on a cotton rag and wipe your interior surfaces — steering wheel, dash, stereo, shifter, handles, vents, etc. Get all that caked up dust and grime off.

Then clean your glass. While I like Windex for inside my house, for the car I lean toward the car guys and Armor All. The Armor All Auto Glass Cleaner is preferred by me, especially with my after-market tints. Paper towels are also fine here. Wipe in a circular motion, turning the towel often.

Now you’re done. You’ve burned a few calories, maybe gotten some sun, and you have not spent ridiculous sums of money at a car wash.

If you’re interested in getting your hands dirty — but your car clean — then share your dirtiest car memory with Blast. The best commenter will win an Armor All Ultimate Car Lovers Gift Pack, which includes everything I mentioned here, plus a bottle of Ultra Shine car wash, Armor All Cleaning Wipes, and a wash mitt and microfiber polish towel. Happy commenting!

Armor All is footing the bill for this article and provided the products for the giveaway, but the opinions are my own.

About The Author

John Guilfoil is the editor-in-chief of Blast: Boston's Online Magazine and the Blast Magazine Network. He can be reached at [email protected]. Tweet @johnguilfoil.

3 Responses

  1. Jessica

    Recently I did a running race with some friends called the Warrior Dash. For those who don’t know, it’s basically a mud run. Well, we brought towels to dry ourselves off after but we didn’t know just how muddy we would get. The towels barely made a dent! When we got out of the car, the seats, car door handles, radio, steering wheel, everything! had mud on it. Not to mention, we had to park in a big muddy field so my car was also filthy. A car wash, vacuum & scrub helped, but my car still has some brown tints on the door from the mud that dried. Oh well- the race was fun so it was worth it!

  2. lynn

    ozone purifier is a safe,cheap and effective way to purify the air of the car.if you are operating a car clean salon,it is a good choice .
    our products designed for car purifier.
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    thanks a lot,and best wishes to you and your family.


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