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Discussion Starter #1
OK:

I just washed my black Pearl PILOT today for the first time. OMG! What a job.........I am used to washing a Mustang and a Civic. This thing is HUGE compared to the cars that I am used to washing!

A couple of things........Anyone have any advice about getting the roof? I got a chair and stood on it to wash with sponge and dry. Kind of time consuming.....I don't know If I want to buy one of those brush things with a rod...........maybe it would be easier! I tried washing the car in sections but still got major spots on the car when I was done.......I know it was not from drying the car in the heat, I pulled the car in the garage for that. I think the soap was drying before I could rinse off. How do I get rid of water spots? Or how can I avoid? I heard there was some sort of soap that helps.........any advice would help me! I guess crossing over into the SUV vehicles has it's differences!!!
 

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what kind of car wash did you use? (The washes that contain wax...i.e.turtle wax... tend to spot badly). I find the McGuiars rinses well with minimal spots and is readilly available Walmart, etc (purpleish bottle), reasonably inexpensive. Also, toweling off is imperative if to avoid spots. Try the "Absorber" towel for about $10.
I wash and dry Pilot in about 10 minutes using a mitt. Usually take a quick ride after washing/ before drying to get bulk of water off. Drying in the sun will greatly increase spotting.
I've been opening doors and standing on sills (and rear bumper) to access roof- being careful not to let h20 run into vehicle. It is a good ways up there. If you wash regularly, most wouldn't notice if you occassionally skipped roof- but keep well waxed.
 

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I am a big McGuire's fan. I like their gold class wash and conditioner. For washing the roof I got one of the extended poles from K-Mart. It is the same as the Chenile wash sponges so it won't scratch like a regular sponge. I wash the top from the ground and then use a Chamois to dry it standing in the door wells as well. The last foot is the only part I have to dry without watching but as davemac said, not everyone is going to notice the roof. I still wouldn't skip it though. Also if you haven't done so already I would put extra wax on it now because you probably aren't going to baby this section the same as the sides where you can reach. (Take a look at some mid 80's and early 90's SUV's and I'm sure you will see what happens.)
 

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Meguiar's Gold Class Too & The Absorber!

Yeah, I like the Meguiar's Gold Class too. Really doesn't take a lot in the bucket to get a lot of suds. Rinses nice too. I just picked up a huge bottle at Target a couple of weekends ago for about $10. I think its about a gallon or so! Probably enough to wash all of my cars for the rest of my life!

I would also suggest using "The Absorber" to dry the car. Its sort of a rubber chamois. I think you can get them at WalMart. It holds a ton of water, and you just have to wring it out every once in a while. Its really soft, and pulls across the surface of the car nicely. I always seem to have trouble using a chamois - it seems to stick to the surface and make it tough to drag, especially when its wet.

The Absorber cleans up nicely - just wring it out when you're done and store it back in its plastic tube damp. When it gets dirty, just throw it in the washing machine. Its also great for getting sticky stuff like bugs and tar off the surface when drying.
 

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You Could..

go to a car wash. That will get the whole job done! Here where I live, you have to go to the car wash because there is a ban on washing cars and sprinklers. Good luck!
 

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Blasphemy! Taking a car to the car wash! That's it, no Pilot for you! Hand washing only!
 

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Hey, at least you do not have to wash your Pilot over here in Germany. You are pretty much limited to using a bucket since spraying water all over with a hose in your driveway is considered wasteful. Also, it is against the law to wash your car (or mow your lawn, etc.) on Sundays. Volksmarches for everyone on Sunday! Just have to take it to a carwash (automatic or do it yourself) Mon-Sat and only on Saturdays before 4pm. :D
 

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Tirespin:

To wash the roof just grap the roofrack rails, step on the rear tires then you will have access to most of the roof and the remaining can be accessed by opening the front door and step on the front floor.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
you guys are awesome!

Thanks for all the great responses...........except the car wash advice! YUCK! Don't they charge extra for SUV's? Charging extra for scratches? No thanks.

I do use the absorber. Love it. I think I am getting the spots because it is sitting to long in the sun while I am soaping and rinsing.........could be because of soap and hard water. I will try changing soaps and try the wheel well trick...............maybe the more I wash the pilot, the quicker I will get.
 

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Yeah, probably just a little bit hard to avoid the sun in CA, right!?

I really prefer to wash on a cloudy day, or towards sun down. If not, I at least like to find some shade if I can. I usually wash in sections, from top down, rinsing after each section - trying not to let the soap start to dry in any spots. Then when I'm done, I like to rinse the entire vehicle with a nice light mist to get it nice and wet (lots of little beads of water), before using the Absorber to dry it. Also, usually works much better with a fresh wax, but I'm sure you know that already!

Its tough enough to dry my '98 Black Currant Accord without it spotting. Since this Pilot is so much bigger, I can't image how long its going to take to dry it, let alone wax it. I think I'll have to put my wife on my shoulders to get the top!

Can't they just make Rain-X for the entire car - wash, and spin dry?!
 

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Anyone tried the Zaino Z-7 Car Wash? How does this work in regards to spotting, washing, drying, etc????? :D
 

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If the paint was hot when you washed, enough of the water dried while still sittin' in the driveway, before you pulled it in. It was 4 zillion degrees here last week -- bad temp for washing. I actually washed ours today -- the sun wasn't as strong and it wasn't hot (70's here in the E Bay). My best advice for the Bay Area, which is mostly hard water (at least in EBMUD territory) would be to wash only when it's <80 outside and in the shade if at all possible. My driveway isn't shaded so I adhere to the <80 rule religiously...else I get wicked spotting (even with the tip/technique below).

Tips:
  • You can remove the stubborn water spots w/white vinegar. Re-wet and wipedown the area afterwards or you'll get hazing/fogging (not permanent, just ugly)
  • When you're rinsing the car, DON'T use the fine mist spray on the hose, which to me always seemed to be the logical way to do it. Instead, take the nozzle off the end and use full-flow water to rinse the car. Hold it about 2"-6" from the surface in a single direction for each panel (like "down" the hood). The water will sheet off instead of beading. I can dry our X with *1* bath towel using this technique -- spot free.
To answer the z7 question -- I like it a lot. Good suds, nice smell (like most of the other zaino products). Brings out the shine really well. In all honesty, spotting risk is probably no different than other quality carwash soaps. Might be a bit pricey for those not doing the whole Zaino system.
 

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Meguiar's Quick Detailer or Final Inspection

You can also use Meguiar's Quick Detailer/Final Inspection to remove any spots after drying. After you get used to the product, you can do the entire car pretty quickly - just spray on and wipe off with a clean cotton towel (I get the small ones in a bundle). It does a really great job of removing any minor imperfections, like spotting.
 

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I just got my Zanio shipment the other week. So far I have only used the Wash Z7. You do have to put a good amount of the Z7 in the water like 3-4 capfuls/Gal. The results are fantastic. I got a MUCH shiner shine that they Turtle Wax powder that I had traditionally used. Also NO Spotting. Whereas Turtle Wax was particularly bad in that regard! It also brought the color out MUCH better than the Turtle Wax.

Joe
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Washed the Pilot again today. I just wanted to thank you all for the good advice. By me stepping up on the side runners and rear wheels, I really cut washing and drying time in half. I have FAR less spots and like I said, got done WAY quicker than the first time I washed it. Not looking forward to waxing, but I am sure it won't be that bad. Thanks again.

Carl
 
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