Bilt Hamber Auto Clay
Auto-clay provides a method of removing
harmful contamination from vehicle paint finishes, improving
its durability and increasing the gloss level of subsequent
Contamination can consist of tiny metallic particles from rail dust, brake dust and industrial fallout; or non-metallic substances such as tree sap, bird droppings or insect residue. It affects all paint finishes and can cause serious damage when left untreated. Surprisingly, even brand-new cars and trucks can suffer from paint contamination.
Metallic contamination is perhaps the worst offender; whilst stuck into the paint surface it corrodes and expands leading to the onset of paint film destruction. Paint contamination can be felt as a rough or gritty texture on the freshly cleaned paint's surface. To assess the degree of contamination on you car's finish simply rub your fingers gently over the freshly washed paint - to magnify the sensation place a piece of cellophane beneath your finger tips and gently rub back and forth - if your paint needs to be clayed you will feel the gritty texture. It is usual to find that horizontal panels such as bonnet roof and boot lid are the most affected.
Clay bar removes these particles effortlessly from contaminated surfaces leaving a glass smooth ultra clean finish perfectly prepared for the application of autobalm gloss protection system. A clay prepared paint surface is not only free of damaging particles but will provide better shine and durability when treated with Auto-balm.
Competing clays require the use of special lubricants. Bilt-Hamber Laboratories Auto-clay differs as its formulation enables normal tap water to provide the necessary lubrication. Some clay bars contain surfactants such as powdered detergents or soaps. Long-term use of surfactants can have adverse effects on paint systems - Auto-clay contains no surfactants detergents soaps or other soluble materials.
Grit contamination cannot be removed by washing, waxing and/or polishing. Cutting compounds remove a thin layer of paint but still leave the grit behind.
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Run your fingers over you freshly washed and dried paint work. Feel for a rough, gritty texture, this is caused by embedded particles. Bonnets are often most contaminated.
If you can feel these particles atomise a fine mist of clean tap water over a 2-3 square feet area, using a plant mister or suitable spray.
Glide the clay bar over the wet surface, properly lubricated clay will move effortlessly just like an ice hocky puck on ice.
You may well hear the contamination at first, this will quickly reduce as you move the bar back-and-forth. Keep the bar moving until the noise has gone
Check again with you finger tips to check that all the contamination was removed.
Once you car’s paint is glass smooth - and it really will be - use Auto-balm to seal the pores and provide a deep gloss shine.
How to Use
Before using Auto-clay thoroughly wash your car to remove any loose dirt. Direct sunlight should not fall on your car’s surface, and it’s best if the work area is relatively cool, but not cold.
To use the clay bar spray water with a plant mister on a small area of your car and rub the bar back and forth with light pressure. Auto-clay should glide across your paint keep the paint surface wetted thoroughly. Auto-clay must not be used dry. Listen carefully - at first you will hear the bar as it pulls the particles away from the paint, the noise and friction will disappear quickly.
After a few passes with the Clay bar, rub your fingers over the area to feel if the surface contamination was removed. Keep rubbing until all contamination is gone. Finally, wipe the clay residue off with a soft terrycloth towel. Just like waxing, work in small areas.
What you will see coming off of the car and depositing itself on the clay bar is a reddish brownish residue, this is what you want to see. As the clay bar becomes soiled, simply fold it over squash it out and keep going. Under no circumstances should the clay bar be used if dropped on the ground, inside or out! The clay bar is good for about 4 or 5 cleans on the average sized car. Once the paint is clean, wax your car immediately.
"...looks more like a large square of plasticine but it makes an excellent job of removing surface debris, without resorting to harsh abrasives that actually eat into the paintwork.
Auto-clay is the first one we’ve tried that can be used with water. Most need a special lubricant. We were surprised to find it more effective than the others too, as it looks and fells almost identical."
Car Mechanics, July 2005