How To Use A Clay Bar
Clay Bar or detailing clay is a synthetic resin compound used to remove contaminants, overspray and
pollutants from the surface of your car’s paint, glass, fiberglass and metal that washing alone could not remove and leaving your paint silky smooth and looking like glass.
There are two different grades of clay, medium and fine. Medium grade detailing clay is designated to intensively clean your year long embedded build up on the vehicle including old wax and it can be used once or twice a year. Fine clay would remove build up like medium grade but gentle enough to be used every month, for spot cleaning and before polishing.
Do You Need To Clay?
The best way to see if your paint needs claying is to rub your hand over the paint after washing with a sandwich plastic bag, If it feels gritty or rough, your paint is contaminated and would benefit with claying, Clay bar would remove most stubborn stains, tar, overspray, dropout, bug and general grime that sticks to the paint. Using a clay bar to remove these is easy and cost effective. Polish and wax should follow soon after claying to seal and protect the paint. Claying will not remove swirls or scratches.
Wash and dried the vehicle in the shade and ensure the paint is cool to touch.
Cut a 200 grams or 8oz. bar into 2 or 4 pieces on a clean surface. Leave the remaining pieces in a container.
A clay lube, spray detailers or a diluted car shampoo can also be used as a lube in a ratio about 15 ml to 2 litre of water.
- Take a piece of your clay bar and mould it in your hands, warm and flatten until become slightly tacky.
- Divide the panel you planning to do into section, about the size of quarter of a bonnet and spray a reasonable amount of clay lube covering this section
- Gently rub the clay bar back and forth on the section. It may grab initially and become free as you worked it. no circular motion and no excess pressure is required just smooth floating motion
- Wipe the area clean with a microfibre towel and use the clay lubricant to remove any clay residue. Rub your fingers across the paint, it should feel as smooth as glass. If not, repeat the process. Reshape the clay bar as needed by folding in the corner to the centre to expose a clean surface. Keep the clay well-lubricated
- Continue these steps until you’ve clayed the entire vehicle. Clay does a good job on glass and chrome as well
- Once you have finished claying the entire car, the paint should look and feel fresh and are ready to accept a layer of wax to protect it otherwise polishing/paint cleaner before sealing and wax
- Do not throw away used/dirty clay bars, you can also clay your windscreen or rims, so just refold well, use plenty of lube and watch stubborn marks or tar disappear.
- Do not use your clay bar if it drop the ground, the sticky surface could have pick up contaminants that can scratch your paint