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How to Protect Your Challenger’s Paint

How to Protect Your Challenger’s Paint

Your Challenger is your baby. You’re going to want to do everything you can to protect it. This means you’ll be washing it and cleaning it as often as you drive it. Cleaning the car seems very straightforward, but if you’re concerned with waxing the car there are some things to keep in mind as you clean the car. Things to be mindful of are how you should wash your car, what kind of wax you should use and how to apply the wax you plan to use to protect your Challenger.

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Fearing for your Challenger's paint job is inevitable, especially if you have pets or children. There are a multitude of ways you can keep your Challenger safe, however, from quality waxes to car bras, to full covers.

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Factory Paint Finish

You should wax your brand new Challenger right away. From the dealership, wax and paint sealers may be applied. The best way to know for sure is to go ahead and treat the car as if it has bare paint as soon as you get it.

Some suggest that you can get by for a few weeks before addressing the detailing of your car's paint. This is probably OK considering the car likely does have a layer of protection applied to it but it is best to play it safe.

How to Wax

We’ve all been familiar with the process of properly applying wax to a vehicle. Even if you’ve never done it yourself, you’ve definitely had buddies or friends who talk about the process. Waxing a car is a crucial step necessary to protect the paint from scratching and fading. The process is very simple but must be done carefully and properly to ensure the job is done right.

Clean: The first step to take when preparing to apply wax to your Challenger is to give the paint a good cleaning. Selecting the proper cleaning product should be based on what you are trying to achieve. If you are trying to take everything off of the paint including the wax that may already be applied, you want to use a cleaner that’s designed to do so. If you are trying to leave the wax that’s on the surface with plans to layer over it, use a cleaner that isn’t harsh enough to remove any existing layers of wax.

Buff: In the case that you are looking to address any paint imperfections you want to take care of them before you apply the wax. Buffing out scratches or even touching up problem areas isn’t an option once the wax is applied.

Wax: After the paint has been cleaned and any scratches or trouble areas have been addressed, you can move onto the waxing process. The method of waxing will vary depending on the type of wax you are using and you will need to follow the manufacturer’s directions accordingly.

Polish: Once wax is applied and left to set, it will still need a level of attention afterward. You will want to go back and clean any wax that spilled over onto trim and give the top layer a good polish. This finishing touch is what separates a good wax job from a poor one.

Types of Waxes

Not all waxes are the same. They all work for the same cause but consist of different compounds that will change how they can be applied in order to work the right way.

Ensuring you follow the proper procedure is the only way to give your Challenger the level of protection it deserves and the shine you desire.

Carnauba: Carnauba wax is an organic wax compound that can be found in just about everyone's garage. Applying Carnauba wax must be done outside of direct sunlight. Organic waxes like Carnauba wax are less than ideal for layering wax as they can produce a dull appearance when too many layers are applied.

Synthetic Wax: Synthetic waxes are just as common as carnauba waxes. These are liquid compounds that are flexible in the elements they can be applied in. This means they can be applied in direct sunlight. Layering synthetic waxes is simple to do and will not result in a dull shine.

Spray Wax: Spray waxes are a detailer’s best friend. This type of wax comes in spray bottles and is easy to apply. This form of wax can be used as a primary wax layer but most find they serve a better purpose for performing touch-ups to an existing layer of wax.

How Often to Wax

Washing your Challenger is something you will be doing regularly. If you live in an area with a lot of dust, road salt, or other sorts of contaminants floating through the air you will likely rinse your car a few times a month. Waxing your car should be done at least four times a year.

Weather Conditions: If the area you live in is subjected to acidic rain, use of heavy amounts of road salt or other types of products that are harmful to the wax on your Challenger, you should be ready to wax the car more frequently than four times a year.

Waxing in the winter time can be a bit of an issue but it can be done. You will just need to balance how much you care about your prized ride against getting a little cold.

Protective Barriers

An extremely effective manner of protecting paint is by using physical barriers to keep the elements and other threats from harming the paint. Wax and other layers of protection of the likes can only do so much for car owners who aren’t careful with their Challenger at all times.

Car Covers: Ice, acid rain, dust, dirt, loose foliage, bicycles, kids and so many other things can come along and damage the cars paint when in storage. Car covers will physically keep these potential threats from ever making contact with the paint at all. When selecting a car cover you want to invest in a durable and breathable material. It can cost several hundred dollars but is well worth saving from investing in paint repairs.

Front End Bras: The front end of the car faces a lot of small threats like bugs and rocks that can damage the paint while driving. Bras are used to stick to the front of the Challenger to keep these threats from causing any harm. These can come in thick materials like those used in car covers or can be clear materials to keep from taking away from the car’s paint job.

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