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What do you use to wash your Pilot?

  • Dish detergent

    Votes: 7 12.1%
  • Premium car wash detergent

    Votes: 38 65.5%
  • Cheaper-by-the-gallon car wash detergent

    Votes: 11 19.0%
  • Other/home brew

    Votes: 2 3.4%
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Discussion Starter #1
I've heard about this for years and I still see posts on this site where people use Dawn, or some other dish washing detergent to wash their car. Dawn suds up like crazy, and it's great for cutting grease from pots and pans or dried egg yoke from a dish, but I'm convinced it's a mistake on your Pilot.

The emollients in car wash soap and dish washing detergent are different and intended for different purposes. The glazed surface of a dish is almost indestructible. You could scrub it with steel wool and it may not scratch. The main purpose of most good car wash detergents is to quickly "float" the dirt on a thin film so that it's no longer in contact with the surface as you sponge and rinse. Most damage to the finish is done by the abrasion of dust and dirt particles being rubbed across the surface.

One of the worst things (for those who live in Winter climes) is road salt, but not for the reason most people think. Yes the salt accelerates oxidation, but the main culprit is mechanical abrasion from leaning against the car, rubbing, or even just placing your hand on it.

I don't even think there's a big difference between premium car wash detergents and plain ol' detergents (like Turtle Wash) that are cheaper by the gallon. They're probably all mild enough not to wreck the finish but still remove the dirt particles. But I'd stay away from dish washing detergents.

P.S. A good no-nonsense site about detailing (i.e., they run the gamut from the casual to the anal retentive and don't seem to push any particular products):

http://www.web-cars.com/detail/
 

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I bet if you were to search on Dawn, they're all Zaino-related posts. Zaino recommends a Dawn first wash only, presumably to strip any previous non-Zaino or carnuba wax buildup.

EDIT: Just to be sure, I did a search on Dawn, and the results bear me out.
 

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Ouch, dishwashing liquid, great way to de-wax your vehicle.

:eek:
 

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Art said:
Ouch, dishwashing liquid, great way to de-wax your vehicle.

:eek:
That's the whole point. The Zaino system is a synthetic, so you need to get rid of the other stuff first.
 

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When Dawn is used as a carwash solution, as recommended on the Zaino site, it's usually used to strip the existing wax before you wax and treat your car again. Otherwise, you shouldn't be using Dawn as your regular car wash fluid at all.
 

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krygny said:

I don't even think there's a big difference between premium car wash detergents and plain ol' detergents (like Turtle Wash) that are cheaper by the gallon. They're probably all mild enough not to wreck the finish but still remove the dirt particles. But I'd stay away from dish washing detergents.
Before I can answer your poll I have to know if Armour All is considered a Premium Car Wash?
 

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jay said:
That's the whole point. The Zaino system is a synthetic, so you need to get rid of the other stuff first.
Knew that, but, using it as an all the time car wash....no.
 

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Re: Re: Dishwashing detergent?

florida_guy said:
Before I can answer your poll I have to know if Armour All is considered a Premium Car Wash?

I wouldn't use Armour All on my toilet seats.:D
 

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Re: Re: Re: Dishwashing detergent?

guitarman said:
I wouldn't use Armour All on my toilet seats.:D
Not even the low gloss variety?:D

I stopped using any Amour All branded product years ago.
 

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Re: Re: Re: Dishwashing detergent?

guitarman said:
I wouldn't use Armour All on my toilet seats.:D
I better be clear. I'm not using the regular Armour All. I'm using Armour All car washing detergent.
 

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I think currently I am using turtle wax branded wash...:1:
 

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Re: Re: Re: Re: Dishwashing detergent?

florida_guy said:
I better be clear. I'm not using the regular Armour All. I'm using Armour All car washing detergent.
I understand perfectly.:)
 

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krygny said:
I've heard about this for years and I still see posts on this site where people use Dawn, or some other dish washing detergent to wash their car. Dawn suds up like crazy, and it's great for cutting grease from pots and pans or dried egg yoke from a dish, but I'm convinced it's a mistake on your Pilot.

What you say makes sense. But I'm pretty sure the maintenance handbook that came with my '98 Honda Civic recommended using a "mild dishwashing detergent" in washing the car. And I've used a dishwashing detergent (not Dawn) a number of times in washing the Civic with no noticeable ill effects.

But, I could be dreaming. I'll take a look at the book, just for fun.
 

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kemosabe said:
Page 326 of the Owners Manual says "dishwashing liquid" is okay... :eek:
Thanks, kemosabe, I was pretty sure that was stated in the Civic manual, but wasn't certain about the Pilot.

All I can say is that good ol' Joy dishwash detergent always did the job on the Civic and left it clean and shiny. But, I usually stopped there and didn't go on to wax it.
 

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Clear coat paint need very little maintenance.
Just remove abrasive debrie (Salt and road grime).
It realy does not NEED wax, unless you want more shine than is left in the factory finish.

Yes, wax wil help it shed dirt a bit easier, but good old dish soap does a great job without doing any harm to the paint.
 

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I guess I'm guilty, I use Dawn. Have used it for years on all my vehicles. Not saying it's good or bad, just that I've never noticed any problem.
 

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Gas stations use Dawn to absorb oil spots on concrete from cars leaking oil while refueling. I have a concrete driveway that is about 18 months old. Delivery truck left a large oil spill on the driveway. Tried Dawn to remove and absorb the oil and stain. Worked like a charm. Not sure I would put something that strong on a car finish.
 

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I always use dishwashing detergent before I wax an or clay. Otherwise its nothing but either mothers or meguirs car wash soap.
 

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Some sort of Amway product that Mrs. Colorider had under the kitchen sink. Seems like it is called "Drops" or something like that! :8:

Seems to work fine with no (obvious) negative affect to the paint or clear-coat.

YMMV
 
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