How to Clean Ash & Soot on a Car

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When removing ash and soot from a car, it's necessary to take precautionary measures against damaging the vehicle, which means diluting chemicals that may hurt the car. Find out how to dilute a general-purpose degreaser with help from a professional car detailing specialist in this free video on auto detailing and cleaning.

Part of the Video Series: Auto Detailing
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Video Transcript

Hi, my name is Nick Cherette. We're here at Concord Auto Spa, and I'm going to show you how to remove ash and soot from your vehicle. Most people think that it's the same process as washing, but we have an added step to take precautionary reasons, for precautionary reasons against hurting your vehicle. It may be stickier so we have a chemical, a degreaser. It can be Simple Green, anything strong. You don't want it at full strength cause' you don't really need it at full strength, so you might want to dilute it a little bit. So, you take a hose or a pressure washer and you go from top to bottom making sure you get every little thing, cause' you want to create as least the least amount of scratching as you can, and you want to see what's left so you know just how much chemical to use. So, this is how you do it. Once you're done rinsing the vehicle with a pressure washer or a hose you'd want to take your degreaser to the remaining effects of the ash and soot that are on your vehicle that have stuck. This is really a general-purpose degreaser. You can find it anywhere; at Wal-Mart, your local auto parts store. Simple Green works great. This one's an industrial one. You really want to dilute it; make sure it's not too strong cause' you don't want to harm your paint and you don't really need it that strong for this application. So, you want to, usually if you have a nozzle you turn it to mist, and you just want to mist it on wherever it may be. In this case we're saying it's all over it. And let it sit for five, six seconds. Once you're done spraying the degreaser on the vehicle and you have let it sit you're now ready to rinse it off with a pressure washer or a hose. The same process applies; you want to go from top to bottom. You don't want to get too close to the pressure washer cause' it might harm the paint eventually if it's really high pressure. You don't really have to get too close cause' the degreaser did all the work for you, and you're basically just rinsing it away to not harm your paint with the next step when you're going ahead and wash it. And after that you'd go ahead and you'd take your wash mitt and you'd wash that area; making sure you get anything left over. And if you were doin' this anyway you'd really just want to wash your vehicle. You might as well take the time to make it look good and just get the whole process done while you're at it. And now what you, once you're done washing the vehicle you're at your final step where you rinse it off. It's pretty much just like a regular washing of a vehicle would be. Add a step with the degreaser, and you're done. And now, you just want to rinse it, and then you'll dry it and you'll be done with it. And that pretty much wraps up how you want to clean your car if you have ash and soot on it.

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