Water helps to lubricate the surface of your car which will help you to avoid scratches and swirl marks. If your car is dry and you rub a sponge or brush on the surface, all of the fine grit and road grime gets pushed into the paint to create tiny surface scratches. Hence one of the best damage avoidance tips is to keep your car as wet as possible.
Start by wetting the whole car to rinse off any loose dirt or grime. If the car dries off on its own before you get to wash it, be sure to rinse it with the hose again. Use lots of water.
A common practice is to soap the entire car, and then move on to rinse. This is no problem if you can get all the soap applied before any of it starts to dry. However chances are that you won’t be able to complete the entire car before some soap starts to dry on the surface prior to the rinse. This allows the soap to bond to the surface and dry in the microscopic ridges which exist on the car surface. This isn’t desirable because it makes it very difficult to remove all of the soap.
After one section is washed, rinse it with the hose before moving on. As noted before you don’t want the soap to dry on the paint and stain it.
As you progress, keep the entire car wet, as this will prevent droplets from drying on the paint and leaving water-spots.
Are you washing in the sun or when the temperature is hot? Try to avoid both these situations as they accelerate the air drying taking place. If it is unavoidable keep a cool rinse applied to keep the vehicle wet until you are done with soap application.
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