Clay Bar Before and After: What Your Car CAN Look Like

VD March 03 2022

There is a gorgeous day outside, and you want your car to look fantastic. Now that you have your car shampoo, you can finally give your ride the well-deserved bath it deserves. Even after you spend hours washing your car, did you know that it isn't that clean at all?

The truth is that simply washing your car with car shampoo isn't the best way to clean it. Many car washes do more harm than good when cleaning your vehicle. In addition, regular car shampoo will not remove those dried-up bugs and other insects.

A clay lubricant should be considered to clean your car before adding any shine to it thoroughly. Perhaps you haven't heard of this before, but we're confident that once you try it, you will never clean your car with just any old car shampoo again.  

Using clay bar and admiring before and after results

Clay is the best way to remove contaminants from your vehicle and why most people choose it to clean their car. Even hidden deposits can be removed with clay, including brake dust, iron deposits, and overspray.

In many instances, contaminants can “eat” up the clear coat, which is the only thing protecting your car's paint. Even after being thoroughly 'cleaned,' those chemical etchings from bug carcasses, road tar, tree sap, and bird droppings leave marks and remnants, taking years away from the appearance of your car.

Chemical products are used in conjunction with clay to remove all those marks from your car. The extra time it takes to clay a car is worth it before applying car wax or ceramic coating.

Why clay means a big difference before and after you clean your car

Professional car detailers recognize the importance of proper decontamination when detailing any vehicle. That is why the use of clay is so crucial. You can use it to clean your vehicle's paint, windows, and even your wheels manually.

Here's a little test you can do: put a plastic bag over your hand. Gently and slowly rub over your car's paint with your hand (with the bag on). Do you feel all those tiny bumps? You can't even wash away those contaminants with a car shampoo because they're bonded to the surface.

The objective when using clay is to remove all the embedded debris and dirt from your vehicle’s paint. The right clay product will trap the contaminants and strategically pull them from your paint.

People make these mistakes with clay bars.

There are two things people do wrong when they use clay on their car:

1. Make the clay bar moist

Many people don't use clay bar lubricant when they detail their cars at home. You'll want the clay to glide over your vehicle. Clay bars aren't recommended right away because this is how they'll be most effective. You could be causing surface scratches to your car if there's not enough lubrication.

2. Reusing clay bars

Using a dirty clay bar can hurt your car's exterior without even realizing it. If you use that clay bar again after picking up dirt, it's contaminated, so don't do make this mistake.