If you are not familiar with how cars work or how auto detailing works, then one of the strangest things you may see when you get your car detailed is car detailing clay. See, as part of the detailing process, the technician working on your car will take a solid block of clay and essentially rub it across the car’s exterior like it was a bar of soap. If you are like most people who do not know anything about cars, then your first question will likely be “how does the clay work?” After that, it will likely be “why clay?” We aim to answer both of those questions.
How does clay work?
Auto detailing clay is very similar to the sort of clay that most people are familiar with (you know the clay you play with and use to build stuff). The main difference is that the clay that they use on cars is a lot smoother and a lot stretchier. The clay is also more durable than the type of clay you probably played with as a child. The clay you are used to would not be able to be dragged across a car surface without coming apart, but the type of clay used in body shops is specifically built to resist that sort of punishment.
“Clay picks up all sorts of small dirt and debris. So, it is the perfect tool for getting rid of hard to see pieces of dirt and debris that linger on a car’s surface”
So, using detailing clay is simple. The clay bar just has to be dragged across the car and it will pick up any debris that is on the car surface. See, no matter how many times a car is washed with soap and water, there is still going to be bits of microscopic dirt, dust, and other contaminants left over on the surface of the car. The contaminants will get stuck in crevices or they will get grounded into the surface, which prevents the water from dislodging them. So, the clay bar is dragged across the car surface to pick up these contaminants that otherwise would not have been gotten rid of. The technician will make sure that the entire exterior of the car is treated with the detailing clay.
So, why do the technicians use clay, as opposed to say a wet towel, or something else along those lines to collect leftover dirt and debris? Well, there are two reasons for this. Firstly, think about clay, it is extremely sticky. Clay picks up all sorts of small dirt and debris. So, it is the perfect tool for getting rid of hard to see pieces of dirt and debris that linger on a car’s surface. Secondly, detailing clay is not abrasive. See, towels and cloths are very rough (even if they do not feel like it). They can damage the surface of a car, especially if they are used very roughly. Clay, on the other hand, is completely nonabrasive. Meaning that no matter how hard the detailer drags it across the surface, there is no risk of the clay causing scratches or any other kind of damage to the car’s surface. Check out The Detailing Syndicate – San Antonio, TX to learn more.