Metal & Exhaust Polishing & Protecting our guide on how to restore & maintain your Metal work

The Introduction

It is very important to keep any bare or polished metal well maintained so that the surface does not start to dull and start to oxidate or even rust. If this happens, it can cause permanent damage to the surface that even the best products and techniques cannot return back to perfection.

Cleaning

Use a regular car shampoo or waterless wash; this will help to remove any loose dirt, and fresh contaminants before they have time to bond to the metalwork. This is one reason why regular washing is recommended and always ensure that you dry the area, using a clean, damp microfibre towel to stop water spots drying on the surface.

Removing heavy deposits and corrosion

When you have corrosion or more stubborn dirt, it can be difficult to remove; the end result will be dependant on how severe it is.

It Is best to do this during the washing process. Start by removing any loose dirt from the vehicle, leave the surface wet and spray an acid based wheel cleaner onto the tip of the exhaust or where the corrosion is.

Leave for up to 3 minutes, but not longer than the manufacturers recommended application time.Use a 00 – 0-grade wire wool( note 0 grade is more aggressive) tear off a small amount and rub only over the corroded area.

Tear off a small amount and rub only over the corroded area. You need to continue rubbing the surface until you have removed the corrosion. Unfortunately, this is not easy to do, and will most likely take several repeated attempts.The finished results will partly depend upon the choice of acid cleaner you use.

We find using Autoglym wheel cleaner (professional) is one of the best products, thanks to its strong formulation. It is very effective at this task, and although you will probably not be able to remove all of the corrosion, but you should be able to make a significant difference.

Once You have completed this process, rinse off and re-clean using your usual shampoo, or something with a neutral or a slightly alkaline ph, as this will help neutralise the acid from the cleaner. Dry the surfaces thoroughly, and then polish as normal.

The above method can be really effective, but it can also be quite high risk. However as it is the only way we know of removing corrosion, It is important to stress that you should always do a small test area as damage can easily occur, so proceed with caution.

Removing Rust

It is best to do this during the washing process. Start by removing the loose dirt by washing your car as you would normally. It is important to dry the surface thoroughly prior to application of any of the treatments so that you don't dilute the products, decreasing their effectiveness.

Spray an acid based cleaner or rust remover only onto area to be treated. Leave to sit on the surface, as per the manufacturers instructions and use a 00 – 0 grade wire wool. ( please note 0 grade is more aggressive) Tear off a small amount of the wool, rub only over the rust, this may take a few attempts if the rust is quite bad,rinse and wipe with clean damp microfibre towel.

Repeat the process if necessary. When you have finished, rinse off thoroughly and then re-clean using your normal shampoo which has a neutral or a more alkaline pH, as this will help to neutralise the acid. Polish as normal and always ensure the surface is dry when you have finished.

In Conclusion

As with the removal of corrosion, this method is quite risky so It is important to stress that you should always do a small test area, as damage can easily occur, so proceed with caution.

Both tasks are not easy to do, but here are some extra tips you might find helpful.

Place a small amount of the product into a small pot and use a sash brush to brush this onto the area to be treated, this helps to ensure the product is applied only to the areas requiring treatment, and there is no over spray or product wastage.

If there are any tar spots remove them prior to starting either of these processes.

Treat areas only when they are cold.

Safety Tips Always wear protective gloves and goggles to protect your skin & eyes when applying chemicals. If you accidentally spill any chemicals, or splash them onto your bare skin, rinse thoroughly with clean water and ensure you read the manufacturers COSHE Sheet for further advice and treatment.

Polishing

Before starting, you must remove any loose dirt, by washing your car normally and for best results use either Iron X or clay,( or both ) to remove any contaminants including tar.

It is best to use a microfiber or foam applicator pad to apply the polish with. Put a small amount of the product onto the cloth/pad, rub onto the surface, using a firm, even pressure, and then remove with a clean, dry microfibre towel.

Repeat if required, or use a more aggressive metal polish with micro-abrasives to help improve the cleaning properties. If there is still evidence of oxidation, the metal will still appear dull. We will show you how to improve/ remove this below.

Tip On exhausts, use 00 or 0-grade steel wool to help remove the stubborn dirt that can build up, it will also help to remove some of the corrosion.

Protecting

We can help you ensure that maintaining the metal areas on your car is easy. By protecting the metal surfaces from the elements, it will mean that you will have to spend less time polishing. This normally involves the use of a nano/glass coating. These coatings are very versatile and thanks to their ability to withstand high temperatures, can be used on wheels and exhausts where high temperatures are reached and other wax sealant coatings just will not last.

Using a Nano Coating.

Your metal should be nice and clean now. we hope you found this guide helpful.

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Created By
Tom Robinson
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