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3/15/2013 2:29:01 PM

How to Keep Pollen from Ruining Your Carís Finish

We all look forward to the arrival of spring and warmer temperatures, where we can get outdoors and enjoy the season. This wonderful weather also means the blooming of trees, plants and flowers, all of which rely on pollen as part of their life cycle. Allergy sufferers dread this time of year for obvious reasons, but it's not only humans that are negatively affected by pollen in the air. This powdery substance can also settle on the surfaces of your car, depositing a nasty film that can result in severe damage over time.

Pollen's natural tendency is to stick to the surfaces on which it lands, as its ability to remain in place is what ultimately ends in pollination. Whether its resting place is a plant leaf, a flower petal or the hood of your car, it will stay put until removed. Those who own or lease a car cannot take the easy route and simply wait for the next rain shower to wash away this resilient substance.

Regular washing and waxing is necessary to ensure that your car's paint job doesn't suffer from the effects of pollen. If it remains, it can eventually break down the finish, leaving your vehicle looking dull and hazy. Even worse, it can force its way into the paint job and crack the finish. This opens the door to rust and damage from the elements, leaving you wanting to buy or lease a new car. Depending on the severity of the pollen in your location, set aside time about once a week to wash and wax your car.

Start with by thoroughly rinsing your vehicle to soften up the pollen, as well as other dirt and grime. Meanwhile, fill a large bucket with water and the auto cleaning solvent of your choice. Beginning at the front and working your way to the trunk in sections, scrub the entire vehicle meticulously. You should make sure to use a brush or sponge that won't scratch the paint. The car will need another careful rinse to remove all traces of soap and residue.

You need to allow your vehicle to fully dry before taking on the next step: waxing. Auto supply shops carry chamois made of hide, but you can use a soft towel if you don't want to go to that expense. Wipe all droplets and moisture from the car, from top to bottom. When you're ready to wax, follow the manufacturer's instructions on application, as these can be different depending on the formula you're using. If your brand came with a sponge applicator, use this tool to apply the wax or use a dry towel.

You should wax your car in sections here, just as when washing. When the cloudy film develops, this means it's ready to remove the wax and buff. With this regular routine, those who own or lease their car will always keep it looking shiny, new and pollen-free.

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