The first thing you see about a vehicle as you walk up to it, generally speaking, is the condition of its paint. When the sun is behind you, and you look at the reflection shining back into your eye, you either see swirls or you don't. The quality of towel you choose to use will determine the finish of your paint. The same goes for the interior, you need to use quality towels to get quality results...
Never underestimate the power of "color coding".
1) Wash Mitt -
Now, I really enjoy these wash mitts since they are of great quality and very safe for your paint. They are very straight forward and the light color can show you when they are dirty and when you need to pay attention when you rinse them out before bringing them back to your paint. Besides that, the better you take care of them the better your paint will look. Obviously, soap plays a big role in this and we will discuss chemicals in another category.
2) Door Jamb Towel -
After wheels, the door jambs are the next dirtiest place on your car. For this reason, you do not want to use towels that are for the paint. Now, you will notice that these towels come in a 3 color pack and they are also larger. This is to help you remember they are not meant for any other part of the vehicle, only the jambs. I use between 4 - 8 on a car, depending on how dirty the jambs are.
3) Wheel Towels -
This is where the color coding begins.
Wheels are usually the dirtiest spot on your vehicle, even after you have washed them. More often than not, you miss a spot and when you go to dry them you do not want to use a towel that will then make contact with your paint. These towels are simple and effective to dry off after their cleaning process. The color, grey, will remind you that they are ONLY for wheels. I use at least 2 - 4 per car. There is another grey towel in this line-up,
and its use will be defined below.
4) Drying Towels -
Now, these are nothing short of time savers.
The most annoying thing that can happen when detailing a car is when you cannot seem to dry it and the towel you are using simply pushes water around.
This will simply not be the case with these towels.
Again, you must be careful with any sealants you use these with since it will affect its drying ability over time. These should be used to dry straight or with a non-selling drying aid. More on that later. The larger purple towel I use for the initial drying, while the smaller gray one I use to catch the drips that linger. I use one set for a car, but will not hurt to have 2 in your arsenal.
5) Paint Towels -
These are the towels I use to apply spray wax or spray sealants to the paint surface. They are not too plush but not too thin, just the right balance in my opinion. Be careful what kind of sealant or spray protection you use since you can seal these towels as well if not washed often enough. The color in use for these are BLUE or GREEN. The bright colors will remind you they are for paint and need to be cared for. The better you care for these, the better your paint will look as well. I use at least 2- 4 per car.
6) Interior Towels -
These are actually my favorite towels overall.
They are just right for everything you need to clean on an interior. They are good for cleaning leather, cloth, chrome, all interior finishes. I usually use two as I clean an interior: one for the application of the cleaning product, the other for buffing the product off. They always leave a streak-free finish and will not let you down. I use at least 5 - 10 per car, depending on
how dirty it is.
7) Glass Towels -
The most annoying and satisfying part of every detail is getting the glass clean and streak-free. Your towel is paramount to get this done in an efficient way. Glass cleaner of choice will be on the Chemicals Page, but these towels have proven very effective in my opinion. You will need two for each window, depending on how dirty they are. Unless the glass is absolutely filthy, I generally apply the cleaner to the rag and not directly onto the glass. One towel will be the “wet” towel, the one you apply glass cleaner to, and the other dry to buff and remove streaks. I usually use at least 6 - 8 per car depending on how bad the windows are.
8) Bug Scrubber -
This is the one place you really need to pay attention when you are washing your car, especially during the warmer months. Bug remains are highly dangerous for your paint surface and should be removed as quickly and safely as possible. This is something you would rather not remove with your wash mitt. That is where this comes in to help. Now, BEFORE you go after these bugs you really need to soften them with a safe APC, pressure wash as much as you can, and then do the rest with this tool. What APC and pressure washer will be specified in the Chemicals and Gear pages respectively in the near future.