We take no responsibility for improper cleaning or following of this guide. Use common sense and if unsure pay someone to do it for you.
Secondly, a Tesla is nothing special and therefore this process can be used on any car and not just a Tesla.
Things you will need:
- Two bucket technique set with a Grit guard (possibly cheaper via Amazon) or just buy two cheap buckets locally and be extremely careful that no stones/dirt get trapped in your mitt
- A decent Wash Mitt (or this one)
- A pressure washer – Nilfisk are better value compared with Karcher if you’re buying new
This is the pressure washer I use and recommend, it has an integrated hose storage which is worth it’s weight in gold + a 9M length hose + Car Nozzle + upgraded tap connector
- A decent hose pipe that doesn’t kink that is connected to either mains pressure or my water butts via a 13mm water filter + Hozelock Pro connectors
- A snow foam lance (make sure the fitment is correct for your pressure washer)
Nilfisk ones £19.99 or £49.99 version both are very similar but the £49.99 one is solid brass
- The actual snow foam, I use Blizzard as it purely cleans the car, no extra additives that will ‘eat’ my ceramic coating (others recommend The Ultimate Finish) but there are tons of options. Search the main group for snow foam options.
- Some decent car shampoo that doesn’t leave a wax coating e.g. Dodo Juice or Liquid Elements
- A few micro fibre cloths – Make sure these are discarded or thoroughly washed (without soap/clothing detergent) – Remember if brake dust is on them it may leave your washing machine with marks
Optional but recommended:
- Some wheel brushes (I use these and they’re superb and surprisingly worth the money), no chance of scratching the wheels as they’re lovely and soft.
- Wheel arch brush (any brush will probably do the job)
- A water filter e.g. Aqua Gleam or Ionic (a must IMO if you’re in Hard water area, check your water with a PPM Meter)
- Glass Cleaner that doesn’t remove ceramic coatings
- Interior Screen Cleaner
- A Hand Duster for inside the car
Things you will need if you don’t have paint protection:
- Some Alloy Wheel Cleaner
- A car shampoo that will leave a slight wax finish OR some car wax & some Microfibre cloths / Applicators to apply it or for the adventurous owner some Carnauba Car Wax + an applicator + a buffer
- Glass cleaner
Things you will need if you don’t have a water filter & live in medium/hard water areas:
- A couple of large drying Microfibre cloths
For a car with ceramic paint protection applied this is how I would (& do) clean the Tesla:
- Snow foam the whole car (1/5 liquid 4/5 hot water)
- Wait 10 minutes for the snow foam to loosen and lift the dirt
- Whilst you wait: brush wheel arches to remove large debris (with specific wheel arch brush that isn’t used anywhere else on the car)
- Pressure wash the whole car to remove the snow foam and large bits of dirt, be careful with the paint (i.e. don’t get too close)
- Use a dedicated wheel brush to gently brush alloy wheels to remove brake dust/dirt etc (might not be needed on every wash)
- Two Bucket Technique the whole car (from top of car down)
- 1st bucket filled with car shampoo and hot water
- 2nd bucket filled with fresh clean cold water
- Use wash mitt to clean from top of the car downwards e.g. always start with the roof, then edges of roof, then top parts of doors and so on…)
- After each section (or part of section), squeeze dirty water from mitt then dip in cold water, squeeze water out again. Then dip in hot bucket and continue to clean.
- Remember door shuts and inside the boot
- Finish with cleaning the wheels (not needed on all washes), you might want a separate wash mitt for this or use wheel brushes
- The wash mitt might become very dirty, if you’re careful you can pressure wash the mitt to remove any stubborn stains
- Avoid washing the mitt in the washing machine etc
- Rince car with filtered water or rinse car and then dry with large microfibre cloths
- Clean glass/lights
Things you should never do:
- Use a sponge
- Use a dirty wash mitt
- Use any wash mitt you’ve dropped on the floor
- Clean the car in direct sunlight on a warm/hot day (it will leave marks on the car)
Originally written by William Fealey for his blog.