Decontamination is simply the process of removing impurities and imperfections on the vehicle's surface that cannot be removed by standard washing.
This includes brake dust, old layers of wax, water spots and industrial fallout which can end up in places of your car that you may not think to look at.
There’s normally two categories of decontamination: Chemical decontamination and physical decontamination.
Chemical decontamination is the process of simply using chemicals to remove these contaminants. The most common steps of this include using iron fallout remover or tar remover to remove these unwanted bits from your vehicle.
Using an iron fallout remover is an extremely easy and rather satisfying process actually. Taking the wheels as an example, simply spray your chosen chemical directly onto the wheels. There’s a huge list of products available but for this example we’ll use the Soft99 Iron Terminator.
Full list of our Iron Fallout chemicals HERE.
Spray onto and inside the wheels, covering pretty much all visible areas of the wheels and the bits inside the wheel well. After a couple of minutes you’ll notice the chemical reacting with the iron and contaminants starts creating a lovely purple or red coloured solution. You can choose to aggravate the solution by scrubbing with a wheel brush such as Valet-Pro’s Dash Brush or you can wash off with a hose or pressure washer.
Repeat this on all four wheels. You can also spray this chemical onto any exterior parts of your car (except the windows) as this will help be able to remove any contaminants that your average wash might not be able to get rid off. You might be surprised how much purple shows up!
This step is advised as you can be removing contaminants that might damage your paintwork later on down the line and you might not even be able to see them!
Physical decontamination involves physically removing any particles that have become attached to the vehicle's paintwork. This is carried out by using fine or heavy grade clay bars to essentially pull the remaining grime and dirt from the surface ensuring a lovely smooth finish. Decontamination is not carried out frequently under normal driving and storage conditions.
Full list of our clay bars and lubricants HERE.
Now typically this whole process isn’t something you should need to do with every single wash. In fact, far from it! A standard decontamination process should be done maybe twice a year, or every 6 months. More or less when it is required as this can also protect the affected areas for an amount of time as well. Think of it as, you should only do it when you need to do it!
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