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Discussion Starter #1
Hello! I am the owner of a silver 2001 Honda Insight CVT. I have had the car for two years, and it has been a constant source of great fun, amusing and sometimes bizarre experiences.

Love this web site! It has been a great source of information and advice for me. Insights are such great little cars, though they do tend to induce perpetual new-car syndrome! :wink:

Speaking of which, does anybody here know a way to clean stubborn water spots off car windows? I have tried just about every cleaner I can think of, and they still won't come off! The only way I have been able to prevent more from accumulating is to dry the windows off with a towel every time they get wet, before the water begins to evaporate.

Also, can somebody here tell me about clay-barring?

Thank You!

Luna
 
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Hi Luna:

___I am a bit of a Zaino zealot myself although I have only applied the multiple formula(s) to the MDX and the Corolla a few times now … It really works giving a wet look to the surface and it works for a heck of a long time. Longer then any wax given the Polymer’s used don’t break down as readily as any wax you could possibly purchase.

___As far as using a Claybar, first Dawn wash (Liquid non-scented Dawn dish washing liquid) your car to remove any older waxes, dirt, and debris. I actually do this twice for a first of the year or truly first application. After you have washed the car twice to the best of your ability, you use the Claybar with a soapy liquid (I use Zaino Z7 and water) and just run the claybar over all body surfaces. As you are moving over small areas, continually knead the claybar to expose a new surface. Just keep turning the claybar on itself every minute or so and rub the car with the claybar like you are writing with a big fat grease pencil. After you are finished, inspect the entire Insight’s surface very closely looking for anything you may have missed. The claybar will remove all kinds of junk that you wouldn’t know is there even after the two washings! You will also notice how incredibly smooth the paint/body surfaces are. The smooth surface is how you will know you did a proper claybarring.

___A few caveat’s … Never ever use a claybar that has been dropped to the ground. Simply throw it away. It’s not worth the risk scratching your paint over. Claybar the windows as well. There is always something on them and the claybar will remove whatever it is for the most part. If you can see some stubborn debris/road grime, keep working the claybar over and kneading with the liquid soap solution as your lubricant. The Claybar will take just about anything off this side of glue or some other such super sticky mess …

___If you have gone through with the trouble of claybarring your Insight, you might as well finish it off right … With Zaino, you should consider the following. After the claybar treatment, I rewash the car with Z7 (Zaino’s liquid car wash). Now its time for some Z2 (fill just 1/2 the small mixing bottle) w/ 3 drops of ZFX and shake vigorously. This small amount will be plenty to do an Insight two + times. You use Zaino very very sparingly … After the car has been Z2/ZFX polished, I thoroughly wipe it down (only 100% American made cotton towels) to remove any leftover polish residue. All other 100% cotton towels from other foreign sources are not truly 100% cotton and the stitching can actually scratch the car. Canon and Fieldcrest are the only way to go imho. Once that is complete, you can add a second or third coat or just Z6 spray over top with a wipe down afterwards or in between each coat and you are finished. A minimum 2 coats is a good start.

___For windows, I Zaino them with the above as well! They will have a RainX like action in the rain afterwards but it doesn’t last as long as RainX itself. After the Zaino treatment, I simply use Windex and newspaper (newspaper has a bit of tack to remove any water spots that may appear) to finish off the interior and exterior windows.

___Another tip … I use one of the Echo Backpack blowers to blow the car dry between Dawn or Z7 washings. It will remove just about any water that may spot from the windows and body and a quick 100% cotton towel wipe down afterwards to remove any moisture still leftover. This will make the car pristine for the Zaino polymer polish treatment.

____And don’t forget the tire black to finish it off. This is what will make the wheels/tires stand out vs. the super shiny just Zaino’ed Insight body surface.

___After all is said and done, you will have the best looking Insight in the state, guaranteed ;)

___Good Luck

___Wayne R. Gerdes
___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.
___[email:11p2jr9t][email protected][/email:11p2jr9t]
 

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Wow wow wow. Sorry Xcel, but there's a HUGE no no in your system. Dish washing soap should never, ever touch a cars paint. Dish soap is made to remove baked on grease on dishes, not to clean the expensive paint on your car. Simply put it oxidizes paint over time and will slowly eat it away. If you need to remove wax from a car there are products to do so, but they are used in a very highly dilluted mixture (I use Meguiars all purpose cleaner plus dilluted 128 to 1 for this). Besides, clay barring will remove wax anyways. You use detailer spray with a clay bar for lubricant. It does a good job and lifts any left over contaminants off of the paint so it won't scratch.

Anyways, my recommendation is to try a clay bar if glass cleaner and a decent bit of rubbing won't pull it off. I recommend Meguairs detailer clay bar(s) if you can find them. They make a mild and agressive ones and they've worked better than any other one that I've tried. I think I know what kind of water spots you are talking about too, the ones that you can get the centers of them to go away, but the outer ring is stubborn. Thos are the worst, at least they're not on your paint (or are they?) because that stuff will etch your paint.

For the paint here's the system that I've found works very well:
Meguiars products:
Detailer car wash soap
Detailer Mild Clay bar with final detail for lubricant (once over the whole car, twice on the areas subject to direct bug hits)
Mirror Glaze Hand Polish, removes light swirls with only a extremely light cut and replenishes paints natual oils. Use as much as desired.
Mirror Glaze # 26 High Tech Yellow Carnuba wax. Usually multiple coats.

Once the car's been done properly matenience of the paint is key. Honestly I haven't washed my car in a month. Every time it gets dusty or it rains I get out the final detail and mist and wipe. The car looks freahly washed and waxed in 10 minutes.

Ohh and as far as towles, 100% cotton terry cloth towels are fine and do a good job, but the new thing now are mirco fiber towels. Not only do they work better but they are less likely to cause scratches. The more I use them the more I like them and my number bought keeps growing.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Wow.

Wow! Thank you all for the detailed instructions on exterior maintenance. I really have to get some of those clay bars now. My Precious (the car!) will thank me for it.

Luna
 
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Hi Rick:

___Dawn unscented dishwashing detergent for a first clean is not a no no in the least! You can either follow the tens of thousands of previous Show car polisher enthusiasts or you can read the Zaino Bros FAQ.
Q: I've heard nothing but good things about Zaino products. I'd like a show car finish, what products do I need?

A: For the ultimate in show car appearance, it is vital to get the cleanest and smoothest finish possible. We recommend washing the car with original blue Liquid Dawn only for this initial cleaning. Once you have your vehicle completely washed, follow up with the Z-18 Claybar, to remove any surface contamination. Follow up the Z-18 Claybar with a thorough wash using our Z-7 Show Car Wash.

For any Zaino polish application, it's critical to include either ZFX OR Z-1 Polish Lok. For that show car finish, we prefer to use ZFX with Z-2 Show Car Polish. ZFX replaces Z-1 and is superior to Z-1. Z-2 Show Car Polish should be applied with our 314 Polish Aplicator pad. The key to our ultimate shine, is multiple thin layers of Z-2, with Z-6 between application. The results with just two coats of Z-2 are amazing.

If your finish contains fine scratches or swirl marks, Z-5 Show Car Polish will safely fill and level minor imperfections. As you layer Z-5, these imperfections will disappear!

So for the ultimate, your shopping list includes ZFX (or Z-1), Z-2, Z-6, Z-7, Z-18 and a couple of #314's applicator pads. For minor imperfections, pick up some Z-5. If you're working on a paint finish that doesn't have a clear coat, simply replace Z-2 with Z-3.
___Dawn is one of the best and least inexpensive products to remove past wax products as well as all matters of road grime.

___Good Luck

___Wayne R. Gerdes
___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.
___[email:2aoa1btl][email protected][/email:2aoa1btl]
 

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Exposure to inclement weather and frequent washing, (especially with a harsh detergent like dish washing soap), further dries your paint out by leaching the natural oils out of your paint.
I follow Meguiars, they have been in business for over 100 years and would think they've got it figured out by now. Do what you will, but there will never be a drop of dish washing soap on my car. Only Ph balanced car washing soap will ever be used on my car. I've got a car in the garage that I spent a month of my life laboring away to give it the perfect paint job and it looked like a million bucks when it was first painted, still looks like a million bucks today and I have every intention on it staying like that.
 

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I'm with Rick on the soap and wax choice. I never never use dish soap.
I use either P-100 car soap from Germany or Meguiars premium brands wash. Meguiars or 3m polish and 3m paste wax. My 2000 Insight looks brand new.


The best tip is was every given and I like to repeat is to use a clean soft car wash cloth. I wash the car wash mit after each use. The same for my wax applicators and polishing pads. You can use the best wax in the world but if your scratching the paint while your washing then your taking a step back.
 
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Hi Rick and Cakely:

___Dawn - unscented is one of the least harsh liquid dish washing detergents you can purchase or are you hands less tough then the clear coat on your car? As listed above, there are more auto show polishers that use this technique because it works the best. Might I suggest taking a look at just a few of the following?___There are literally hundreds of sites listing similar results by individuals that use Zaino and I will say the same. Zaino is not a wax, it’s a polymer and that is what makes its longevity superior. It far outlasts and bonds better to a painted surface then any wax you can purchase. One of the keys and especially in hotter areas of the country is that waxes begin to break down at ~ 165 degrees. Zaino breaks down at far higher temperatures. 165 degrees F can be reached on any sunny day with higher ambient temps.

___In all tests and reviews, Dawn is the premier pre-polish car cleanser of choice given its ability to remove greases, old wax applications, and road grime better then anything else. Who does more research on removing grime while leaving anything it touches in pristine condition, Meguiars or Procter and Gamble? That is an easy one.

___Good Luck

___Wayne R. Gerdes
___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.
___[email:2l0bxq16][email protected][/email:2l0bxq16]
 

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Luna,

For removing water spots on glass try cleaning the glass with a 1 to 1 ratio of vinegar and distilled water mixed in a spray bottle. Spray the vinegar on the glass and gently rub with a soft cotton terry towel. If you find you still have persistent spots then you may have to resort to a window polishing paste. You can use Borax and distilled water to create a paste. Gently rub on your windows in a tight circular motion. Polish in several directions "wax on, wax off" then rinse completly with the hose. You don't want the grit from the Borax to sit on your paint so make sure to wash your car afterwards.

For really drastic measures you can try 000 grit steel wool. But, only when the first two measures don't work. The 000 steel wool is soft enough not to scratch you windows. Make sure the glass has been completley cleaned before trying the steel wool or else the particles of dirt on the glass could act like sandpaper when it gets caught in the steel wool. Remember to wash the car again, you don't want little shards fo steel wool to rust on your paint.

After polishing your glass, I'd suggest using a glass wax to prevent future spotting. You can pick up glass wax at any auto store.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Really Weird Spots

Okay. Here is a description of my window spots and everything I have done in attempts to remove them.

The spots are small, clear, flat, almost glaze-like speckles. New ones appear whenever water beads up on the windows. Luckily, there are few, if any, marring the paint. They are hard and smooth to the touch and so fused to the glass like a second skin that they won't come off even when I scratch at them with my fingernail. They almost remind me of hard water stains in their stubborn resistance.

I have tried vinegar and water, Windex and an assortment of other window and glass cleaners, and even scrubbed at a few with a tiny bit of hard water treatment. All remain proudly to this day. :shock:

These spots are not limited to the Insight. They have also accumulated on the not-so-pampered Honda Civic and the neighbor's car. I am begining to wonder if there is something in the rain around here.

Has anyone ever seen anything like this before, or know what to do about it?

Luna
 

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Hmmm, that sounds like chemical contamination. You say it is a type of film on the glass? You may try using a brand new single sided razorblade. Hold the blade squarely on the glass and gently razor the spots off. I've used this technique to get stubborn tree sap and paint overspray off of glass. Do not use excessive force with the blade, just glide it over the glass. Pushing too hard will create gouges and then you will have an even bigger problem.

If the spots are still there after razoring then you have chemical etching on the glass. The only way to remove/minimize this is to have the glass professionaly polished at a windshield shop.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Well, I tried the razor and nothing happened. Those darn water marks are just too slick. I can run my hand over them and all I feel is smooth glass. I guess you are right, Sparky5501, and it is chemical contamination. :roll:

But how does this happen? And how can I prevent it?

Luna :?:
 

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Luna, where do you live btw? Maybe someone could give you a hand at attempting to eliminate your water spots.
 

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Hey Luna :D
Thought I would drop by and say Bonjour!
comme t'ally vous ce soir!
C'est tres gentile! ..... n'es pas?

Clay bars Je ne sais pas
!Ayez une grande nuit ! Parlez-vous plus tard.
Plus tard vous Gator !

Chien
les levesque! :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Hey, guys! I don't think I'll have any problem finding a professional windshield shop or something equivalent where I live. I have residency in two states at present; one filled with giant auto-dealers and car supply stores the size of Wal-Mart, the other where every second person owns a mechanic shop or gas station and collects/fixes up retro-cars.

Thanks again! I really appreciate all the info.

Luna
 

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I have the same problem with water spots or whatever they may be. Not sure if they are more from rain or washing or a combination of both. I try to dry the car as best I can after washing because of the amount of minerals in the water in my area. My previous vehicle has severe spotting on the windows and I have never been able to remove them so I wanted to try and keep them under control with my Insight.

Today I picked up some "Glass Scrubb" under the brand "Glass Science" from Kragen's. It took 2 applications on the rear window to remove the spots but it looks so much better now, especially around the edges. Previously the black border looked faded, now it looks glossy again.

Here's before and during pictures of the area right above the rear wiper, I didn't get an after shot because as soon as I was done it started to rain :roll:

Before
Between applications
After applying it a second time and working a bit more around the base of the wiper, it did remove the visible spots.
 

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Oh, my. Those are exactly the type of spots that have made their home on my poor car's windows. Another thing I've recently noticed about them is that they tend to catch the light from other cars' headlights and streetlamps in the dark, making night driving difficult. I've been looking for a place to have them polished off, but perhaps I will try some glass scrub first.

Luna
 

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Yeah, the bottle was only like $4 and just takes some water, towels, and elbow greese. I plan on doing the rest of the windows as soon as it is dry out. One thing you will notice is that the window feels smoother. If you just do one area then run your finger nail from that spot to an un-scrubbed area you can feel the spots.
 

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Is the stuff a liquid? If so, it is probably just a mild polish...

Another option, if you need it, is 4-0 (or 0000) steel wool, wet. Just lightly rub like you are polishing the window. This should remove those water spots (and that's what they look like).
 
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