Car Glass: Cleaning and Polishing — /DRIVE CLEAN

Car Glass: Cleaning and Polishing — /DRIVE CLEAN


LARRY KOSILLA: Today, I’m at
FMI, which is the Northeastern vehicle press fleet management
company for GM, BMW, and Mini. When the press need to review
their cars for their publications, this is where they
come to check them out. Coming up on today’s episode,
we are going to be talking about one of my biggest OCD
pet peeves, a filthy, contaminated windshield. It’s all coming up today on this
episode of “Drive Clean.” [MUSIC PLAYING] LARRY KOSILLA: Today, we’re
working on the 2013 CTS-V Sport Wagon press vehicle
in the limited edition Stealth Blue. And this thing is a beast. And I know it’s a beast because
it’s got bugs all over the windshield, which I can
barely see through. And as most detailers will tell
you, it’s a huge pain in the butt to properly
clean glass. And that’s what we’re going to
talk about today, all the steps on removing the
contaminants and getting that perfect shine, so when you’re
driving, there’s nothing that you’re looking through. Today, we’re going
to do just that. There are a couple benefits to
having a clean windshield. Well, obviously, in perfect
weather, you’re going to have a great looking windshield, and
you can see right through it, no problems. But the big one is during
bad weather. You want to prepare for that. And the one thing is when those
little things that are embedded and jammed in your
glass, they’re going to catch the water, and it’s going to
stay on your windshield a little bit longer. So when you have a nice clean
surface, it’s going to fly right off, making it safer
when you’re driving. And another benefit is it
actually saves wear and tear on your windshield wipers,
because if you have those things sticking up, biting at
the windshield wiper, you’re going to go through them much
faster, and you’re going to have reduced visibility. Before we can get started with
cleaning the glass, it’s important to understand the
towels that you’re using. And we have four of them here. Well, this is a waffle towel. And it’s really great at
scraping off the bugs. I call this my all-in-one. And it’s a waffle
towel because it looks like a waffle. Then we have our three
other ones. We have a high pile microfiber
towel, we have a low pile microfiber towel, and we have
a medium pile microfiber towel, each of which has
different uses when cleaning the glass. All right. The next thing you want to do
is pull up the windshield wipers to get them
off the glass. Then you’re going to take
your glass cleaner. This happens to be Invisible
Glass by Stoner. And what you’re going to do
is give a few squirts. And right now, you’re using
that as lubrication. So what I like to do is
just spread it in just a little bit. So you’re not actually cleaning
anything right now. You’re just getting some
lubrication, because your next step is going to be your
long reach razor blade. And what’s important about
this is your angle. So we’re going to make sure
that it’s not too high and not too low. What this is going to do is it’s
actually going to shave the glass down. And anything that’s sticking up,
kind of like your whiskers here, it’s going to shave
everything off. And it’s going to get the
closest clean that you possibly can do. See, there’s a bug
right there. And if you’ll notice, going in
short little strokes, you can see not too far down
and not too far up. Right in the middle there. If you notice, all this little
water that’s dripping down here is full of contamination
and bugs. So you’re just going to keep
moving along, kind of like you’re plowing the glass,
if you will. Sorry, guys. This is taking– it’s a
big piece of glass. Now that you’ve razor bladed
the glass, take your short pile microfiber towel and just
clean it up real quick just to get all the gunk off. Look at that. So that’s a clean
piece of glass. Put this to the side. You’re going to add your glass
cleaner, once again, as lubrication. Get that in there. I like to spread it around
just a little bit. And you’re going to take your
clay, lubricate the clay, and now you’re going to put a
little bit of pressure. Normally on paint, you
don’t use pressure. It’s all about friction. But because glass is very hard,
you still want to use some friction, but you can also
put just a little bit more pressure than you
would with paint. Now, what this is doing is kind
of like when you have a pimple on your face, you’re
going to pull it out of the skin. We shaved it with the razor
blade, and now you’re just getting anything that you didn’t
get with the razor. So you’re going to have really
clean and fresh glass. Let’s take a look. Yeah, there’s a bunch of
gunk right in there. All right, you’re going to
take your short pile once again and clean up the mess. On to the next step. Now, if you were going out for
a drive, this might be good enough for just going out and
having a Sunday drive. But if you want to go the
full steps, this is what you would do. So this, to remind
you, is a regular microfiber cutting pad. This is a little bit thinner
microfiber cutting pad. This is a glass polishing pad. As you can see, it’s
much thinner. And the reason why is glass
is much harder. So you’re not going to need a
backing plate to absorb any of that pressure. You want it all to go to the
glass so that you can polish it properly. So what we’re going to do is
grab a machine, put some product on there, and
start polishing. So now we’ve got a little bit
of glass polish on our glass polishing pad. Rub it in with our finger. And much like polishing the
paint, throw the cord over your shoulder. You’re going to work a 2 by 2
area, which is basically we’re going to go a little bit
more than half here. So tap, tap, tap. Just a little tap. And now you’re going to turn
it on 2 and spread it in. Turn it off. Now boost it all the way up
to 6 on your DA polisher. You’re going to put some
pressure down and just work it in like you would paint. Here, I’m using glass polish and
a glass polishing pad from Griot’s Garage. Also, notice that I’m using a
Porter Cable DA polisher along with a backing plate with no
cushion and a glass polishing pad with no cushion either. The combination of no-foam
cushions increases the power applied to the glass from the
machine and subsequently allows me to use what’s regarded
as a less powerful polisher according to
today’s standards. Once you’re done polishing the
glass, there’s going to be a bit of residue. So that’s when you take your
high pile microfiber towel, and you’re just going to scoop
all this off, like this. Flip it over a few times. There’s a nice shine on this,
but we’ve got a few more steps to go through. So now that I picked off all
that residue that’s in there, you’re going to go
back to your low pile microfiber towel. Now we’re just going to clean
off all the edges and make sure that it’s still
looking good. There’s no leftover polish. And you can actually feel
the difference. It’s very smooth right now
compared to when I started. So now that we’re done with the
polishing, we’re going to do one more quick clean to
remove any of the polish. You’re going to take your low
pile microfiber towel and work it in again. And one of the big questions I
get is about ammonia in the glass cleaner. Ammonia is typically a
home-based glass cleaning product, because there’s lots of
grime on your house windows and things like that. And ammonia is a great
degreaser. But in the automotive
industry, you don’t really need it. And there’s kind of a concern
when you have window tints, because sometimes it adversely
affects the window tint. So we don’t really
need ammonia. And Invisible Glass by
Stoner is a perfect solution for that. So here we go. Looks pretty good. Now we’re on to putting a really
strong coating on this glass, and we’ll move
to the interior. My next step is to
add a hydrophobic coating to the glass. Now, most people know Rain-X.
But there’s tons of other longer-lasting products
out there. So what you do is you add
a few squirts to a foam applicator pad, or this
little piece of foam that I have here. What you’re going to do is
you’re going to use small circular motions. I think by now most
of you know I’m not crazy about circles. But on glass, because you’re
trying to penetrate the top layer of that glass, circles
is a good option. Short, overlapping motions. And you’re just going
to work the– Here, I demonstrated using
Rain-X because it’s the cheapest, easiest, and quite
frankly, the most familiar one out there. Nowadays, there are dozens of
other coatings, so pick the brand you’re most comfortable
with. However, the application process
is basically the same. A few more squirts. And now the product is dry. What you want to do is give just
a few little squirts of your glass cleaner. And you want to take off
the top layer of this hydrophobic product. And you’ll see it just
comes right off. But sometimes it’s nice to add a
little bit of glass cleaner, because this can dry to a little
bit of a hard haze, I like to say. Now you want to go, add a few
more squirts now that it’s off, and really clean the
windshield nicely. Now, my last little step I like
to do is I use the high microfiber towel, I flip
it over, do one quick little squirt. And this will get off
any little streaks. The idea is to move your head
and catch the light and see if you see any odd streaks, because
there’s nothing worse than driving down the
street and seeing one line going across. It’s super annoying. And the microfiber towel is
really good at getting those little spots. This looks good to me. The last thing you want
to do is pull up your windshield wipers. Now, my medium pile microfiber
towel, I’ll take a little bit of glass cleaner, and I’ll
squirt it in a straight line just like that. And I’m going to take my fingers
and pinch the rubber just like that. So take it inside of the
microfiber towel, hold this end, pinch, and wipe
all the way down. And now you’re getting off
all the junk that’s accumulated on there. So now that your windshield is
clean, now your wipers can be clean, too. Now that we cleaned the outside
of the glass, it’s important to focus on the
inside of the glass. One of the big problems that I
see a lot of people run into is they come from the
driver’s side seat. So if you’re sitting in here
and you want to reach these areas, you have to kind of
battle or fight the steering wheel, which is not
a great option. So what you need to do is come
from the passenger-side seat. What you want to do is put your
left knee right in the middle of the seat. And eventually, you’re
going to put your left hand right here. But before you do that, you’re
going to take your cleaner, two squirts on a rag. And what you’re going to do is
take your glass cleaning towel and get all the way
in the corner. And go up and down, and then go horizontally to get in there. And if you notice, I put
my right hand here. And as I go and clean that
corner, I flip it upside down and put my left hand so that I
can get stable before I get all the way to the edge. Now, if you’re working before
from the seat, you just wouldn’t be able to reach it. One of the big things that I
get a lot in emails is, how come I don’t spray the
glass just like this? And the answer is when you spray
the glass, there’s mist that comes down on
the dashboard. And because we’re all OCD
watching these videos, is you want to go, and you wipe
the dashboard. But the big thing is
we’re going to have it nice and clean. There’s going to be dressings
on there sometimes. And the plastic itself does what
we call gassing out, so it’s going to release all
these plasticizers. What you do is when you wipe it
and you put it back on the glass, it’s going to
smear everywhere. And basically, you’re
going to be what we call chasing the glass. It’s going to keep pushing it
around and never get it clean. Two squirts. Put it in your right hand Take
your right hand, flip it upside down, and get
into the corners. That’s what’s going to allow
you to clean the glass properly without blowing
out your back. Cleaning the inside of the
windshield is pretty hard on your body. And these little tools
actually make it easier for you. This is, I don’t know,
$5 or $10. What you do is you can just
slide it down the glass, and it’ll reach the far areas that
some people can’t reach. And they actually work
pretty good. Just get a microfiber, one or
two squirts, reach it down there, and now that’s all you
have to focus on is the top part of the glass, not
the lower part. This will save your back. Now, if your car has a door
frame like this one, all the way to the top, you’re going to
put the window down a few inches, take your towel, pinch
it, and just get the top of the window before you
put it back up. So we got all the
junk off that. Pull it back up. And then you’re going to do
a few squirts here, a few squirts there. And you’re going to work
the edges first. One edge to one edge, up
all the way around. And you’re going to go
right in the middle. One, two, three, like this. And then go back the
opposite direction. Flip it over, dry side. And now you’ve got a nice,
clean piece of glass. Repeat that process for the rest
of the car, and you’ll be looking good. Although it can be time
consuming and hard work, regularly cleaning your glass
will minimize buildup and maximize visibility. For a step-by-step PDF of how
to clean your glass, visit ammonyc.com That’s
it for me, guys. Thanks for watching another
episode of “Drive Clean” right here on the Drive Network. -Yeah. Here we go. All right. [INAUDIBLE]. Just waiting to hear,
like [CRUNCH]. [LAUGHTER]