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Hello and Happy New Year,

I purchased a 2019 GLA left over and would like to clay bar and wax the vehicle. I guess what I am asking is - this is not that kind of finish where wax would hurt it in any way correct?? Thanks in advance for you advice.
 

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I’m a fan of the clay bar system, but only when necessary on “foreign” cars. If it is a true “German” paint job, the clear coat tends to be a bit “softer” because they use a solvent based finish which we can’t use in the US due to EPA and Clean Air standards. They (the Germans) claim it resists chipping better and the luster is deeper.

That said, I’ve done it on my 2015 to get rid of minor paint overspray (should have moved the car out of the garage that day) that a simple cleaner wax like Mothers wouldn’t take care of. Try the tissue test – if you rub a tissue across the finish and it seems to drag or scratch, it’s time, but use plenty of lubricant and knead the bar frequently – if you pick up too many contaminants, you end up doing more damage than good.

Waxing – I have not found a wax that stays on that finish for any length of time – it’s almost like Teflon. I’m a big fan of Mother’s products, and have gotten a good finish on my VW to last for nearly two years, but it was a US paint job.
 

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Blackfire products have worked well on my German Porsche finish. After Decon washes and M205 Mirror Glaze to remove old wax (105 if bad blemishes) use BF210 polish to remove oils and then BF300 sealant. Wait 12 hours before BF333 wax followed by BF320 polymer spray. This combo has worked well on the GLA also.

That being said, after five washes with a decon soap to remove all of the wax on my 997 ten months ago I used a ceramic coating that has held up beautifully since. I intend to go that way with the GLA this Spring. The ceramic coat bonds only to the clear coat ... ALL wax must be removed for it to work!!!
 

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OK, here is wax 101

To remove ALL wax use Dawn dish detergent. Companies who paint cars buy it by the 55 gallon drum. Nothing removes wax and oils and tars like Dawn detergent.

Next, do you know what wax EVERY new car in the USA comes with (except the Korean cars), yes Meguiars!

Think about that! It's not about the price, it's about the best look to sell that new car!

Back in 2003 when I had my 1969 300 SEL 6.3 I went to a Meguiars wax seminar. They gave out $90 worth of products and free lunch. The guy doing the seminar is one of the people paid to wax cars at Pebble Beach, he can take a $400,000 car and get it to sell for $500,000!

The wax you buy from Mercedes is Meguiars but has aloe vera in it.

I probably have over a hundred dollars worth of carnuba waxes, like Griots. Have at least 3 dozen micro fiber rags. Purchased a dual action wax machine from Meguiars, in total went to 3 seminars.

I have used NXT for the last 18 years, but they have newer waxes now, like the Ultimate Liquid wax.

Take a look at the Meguiars web site Meguiar's Training Center - 2019 Event Schedule
 

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Dawn can damage modern clear coat over time. There are decon soaps that are better but may require multiple washings to remove all of the wax.
 

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I wasn't suggesting using Dawn with every wax. Paint shops can't spend the time to do multiple washings to remove all of the wax. Just stating a fact that if you want road tar and grease removed your dish detergent Dawn works great. They also use it on oil spill animals to remove the oil.

There is a simple fact, when you want a ultra high performance do you go with an off brand or do you go with a company that spends millions of development.

Exactly the same with car waxes, Meguiars and Mothers spend on development.

Nothing better than stopping to get gas and people coming up saying how great the car looks.
 

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I may have come across wrong. Sorry.

I've always loved Meguiars. At the same time, for dark cars I have converted to Blackfire and have been playing with some of the ceramics as well.

I wax twice a year (times 3 vehicles) which doesn't give me enough experience to give anyone advice. But in the interest of full disclosure ...

I have read in multiple places that with modern clear coats Dawn can cause problems in the long run. I'm with you in that the decon soaps require multiple washes and for the few times people dewax their cars it probably doesn't matter much. And professional garages generally don't want to add burden.
 

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For the once a year or so that I remove old wax I'm not concerned with the long term effects of Dawn. It simply works.

I used to employ clay bar but now use a Griot's synthetic pad, still well lubricated with their detailing spray. Just easier to use with no residual.

Although I love the aroma of a high content carnauba I more often go with a synthetic polymer these days, e.g. Zaino, as dried wax in crevices is a pain to deal with.

Looking back at my prior two comments I guess ease of use is my current primary focus. ;)
 
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