William T. Gholson works in the auto parts industry, but his appreciation for cars goes back much further than that. For him it is a life-long affection that started at an early age. His father introduced him to cars around the age of 10, and he never looked back. Since then, he has been fixing and polishing his cars himself, with the caring touch of a professional.
As an expert mechanic, he can fix virtually any problems, but that’s obviously not true for every car owner. Most people don’t know nearly enough about the inner workings of cars to be able to fix mechanical problem themselves. What’s interesting is that many car owners handle polishing the same way. They think it is a process that requires the help of a professional, and that’s just could not be further from the truth. Polishing does not require owning equipment worth thousands of dollars, nor the intervention of a car expert.
The Rotating Wheel Method
This type of surface finishing uses a machine with a rotating wheel, also called car polisher or car buffer. Using that machine is actually not that hard, and you can do it pretty much the same way a professional detail shop would.
How It Works
The polishing process heats up the outer layer of the paint of your car, which in turn takes on a liquid form. This sounds scary, but it is actually a great thing, though it’s not recommended to do it near a wall or any other place you wish to keep clean. Once that outer layer becomes fluid, you are able to cover the areas where the paint job got damaged.
Before even thinking about using the rotating wheel, you should clean the exterior of your car thoroughly. It’s important that you do this in a shade.
Put a clean and slightly moist pad on the wheel. Start the wheeling process on a single body panel. You should set the machine to medium speed, and it is important that you stay at one place until it is done. The polishing process is not random, and you should always go slowly, so you can compare the finished parts with areas that haven’t been done yet. Clean the pad from time to time with a hose or a power washer.
Once the wheeling is finished, wash and rinse the car manually, including the door and the jambs. Make sure that you dry the whole car properly.
Apply a coat of wax to the paint with special emphasis on the problematic areas (if there are any), then grab a sander and finish the process. A sander – also called random orbital sander – is a power tool with a sanding blade. Wax the car using a back and forth motion. The pressure should be light but consistent.
Clean the non-waxed areas of the car while it’s drying. William T. Gholson always polishes his cars himself.