2017~2021 Question about outer care of new CX-5

I can share what I do

usung the cheapest microfibers from walmart:)
1$ for pack of 2. decent for the price.
discard after few reuses. usually last at least 3-4 uses and can be washed easily after each use.
This is not a ferrari at the end :)

for car wax - optimum uv car wax spray. 14 bucks lasts about year or so with applying on the whole car every month or every 2 werks after a wash. Very easy to apply.
Of course there are many other options on the market.
 
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Southwest Ohio
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'19 CX-5 diesel
Everyone has pretty much covered the basics here for you. There's one thing that comes to mind that I haven't seen discussed (I may have missed it)...

With waxes, try not to get it on the plastic trim because it leaves white marks and it's a PITA to get it off. Use some painter's masking tape to cover the black trim aress. If you do get wax on the trim, buy one of those rubber pencil erasure blocks to get it off the trim.

And I say good on you for posting up questions about what you want to learn! (y)
 
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2016.5 CX-5 GT AWD titanium/black 2016 Miata Club ST MT white
I may have missed it in the replies but be SURE to wash and wax your car in the shade!

Once you get a good base of wax on your paint it'll be easier the next time you wash and wax.

After a wash I use my leaf blower to dry the car off. Your neighbors may think that you're a lunatic for doing so, ignore them.
 
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Occupied Calif.
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2019 CX 5 GT-R
Haha the leaf blower trick is a good one and it works. I have an electric one and it isn't as noisy as the gas powered blowers. It is especially useful to blow the water out of the mirrors and crevices that drips out and leaves water spots on your car after you dried it and go for a drive.
 
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Phoenix
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2020 CX5 signature
So working on my car today and thinking of the OP, I came up with this.

Many are looking for a quick and easy way to give decent homemade results without a lot of fine detail. The following has lasted all my cars many many years of clean and shiny finish, and is an easy, no frills project. Each step takes a relatively short time and is an inexpensive and practical approach

1 IronX - takes literally no effort, just spray on your freshly washed car and rinse off
2 Mothers Speed Clay, again, next to no effort
3 Meguiars Ultimate polish - again near effortless, wipe on, wipe off while still wet
4 Spray of your choice - Turtle wax Ice or Hybrid Ceramic.

Then, after each every other wash or once a month or so Turtle Wax Ice, Aquawax, or similar

Without a pro detail these have kept my cars clean ad water sheeting for years with only a yearly re-polish
 
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Phoenix
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2020 CX5 signature
Oh, and on the Microfibers, the Costco are so cheap, I think $16 for 36 will last a year, I treat them as practically disposable. 1st use to spray wax spread and wipe, then it's relegated to door jams, wheels, and interior. Then a fresh set of 2 for the next month.
 
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2014 Mazda3 S GT auto, 2008 MX5 6-speed

I agree. This bag contains plenty of towels. After some years you may want to replace them and then use the old ones for cleaning your wheels, for example. The brake dust on wheels is highly abrasive, so I keep dirty towels in separate plastic containers - wheels and body.
 
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Phoenix
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2020 CX5 signature
I can share what I do

usung the cheapest microfibers from walmart:)
1$ for pack of 2. decent for the price.
discard after few reuses. usually last at least 3-4 uses and can be washed easily after each use.
This is not a ferrari at the end :)

for car wax - optimum uv car wax spray. 14 bucks lasts about year or so with applying on the whole car every month or every 2 werks after a wash. Very easy to apply.
Of course there are many other options on the market.

My post, #25, has a couple more steps that I only do on a new car or once a year. But yes, If you start with a clean car, this is really all that's needed on a regular basis. Maybe polish of once a year. The Meguiars ultimate polish is super easy and probably has some cleaning abilities - I don't even think you let it haze before wiping it off, don't remember
 

HardRightEdg

US 2020 CX-5 Touring AWD Soul Red
I may have missed it in the replies but be SURE to wash and wax your car in the shade!

Once you get a good base of wax on your paint it'll be easier the next time you wash and wax.

After a wash I use my leaf blower to dry the car off. Your neighbors may think that you're a lunatic for doing so, ignore them.
I like the leaf blower idea. I think I'll try that next time.
 

HardRightEdg

US 2020 CX-5 Touring AWD Soul Red
I spend more time with my leaf blower blasting my mirrors cause nothing irritates me more than a freshly waxed car then driving it hours later to magically have 16 gallons of water fly out of the mirrors and spot up the sides of the car.
It annoys me after just a routine wash. Cracking a window is even worse. A thought occurs regarding the leaf blower which I'll have to remember when I try it. Don't let the blower end drop toward ground level lest junk bounces off the pavement onto the car.
 
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HardRightEdg

US 2020 CX-5 Touring AWD Soul Red
There are tons of recommendations above, but I'll add a couple of notes I'm not sure were mentioned.

For future referance, the rule of thumb is that a new car can be waxed after about two weeks from the manufacturer date with the paint baked on in a highly controlled environment. The manfacture month/year can be found on a sticker on the driver's door jamb near the sticker that identifies recommended tire pressure.

By the time the car is transported, prepped and put up for sale it would be highly unusual to require a wait. I'd think it is not even possible to get a Ford from the manufactuer's paint line to around the corner to a Detroit dealer in that short of a time. Aftermarket autobody work might require a month if the paint is air dryed with a catalyst.

If you are going to use a car wash, the ones that use brushes should be avoided. The ones with the floppy fabric strips are probably a little better. Bits of grit from the previous car or your own could scratch the surface with the brushing or rubbing. It's best to find a touchless wash. The one's I've found are self-serve where you drive into a bay where overhead and side beams pass back and forth spraying stuff and then blow drying without touching the car. The one I use most has a high pressure wheel/side spray and uncarriage wash as you drive in then shuts off by a trip switch. So I drive into the bay very slowly to get the max wash as it keeps on spraying until the car passes a certain point.

When "waxing", which could be a wax or a synthetic material with or without a micro abrasive, hand wash first. No automated car was can be trusted to get all the grit off a car. Perhaps the most important step in washing a car is the pre-rinse. You want to get as much of the grit off as possible before rubbing any kind of washing cloth or mitt on a car. You also want to remove any bugs or tar with an aptly named bug and tar remover before waxing.

Anything you rub on a car can scratch it, even a microfiber cloth. There is a clear coat over the paint which is a acrylic resin or somesuch that can be quite soft. That's your paint protection from the factory. An imperfect analogy would be it's like putting clear polyurathane on a piece of furniture after you stain it. Evidently my Soul Red is notorious for a soft finish, though with 5k+ miles on it I see nothing like the horror stories reported. Never rub anything on dry paint; always use a lubricant of some kind. A liquid product may have that built in or it may call for a spritz of water or a damp cloth. Follow the directions. Pros and the more fastidous DIY detailers will even drag a microfiber drying cloth over the surface rather than swirling it around.

There are recommendations above regarding clay bar treatments and iron removers. You don't want to do something you don't need. Clay bars by nature have a micro abrasive. Iron removers are a fairly potent chemical but typically don't call for rubbing. Once the vehicle is thoroughly washed and dried, lightly run your fingertips over the various surfaces of the car. Those miracles of nature can detect impurities and imperfections in the car finish down to the nano level, stuff you'll never see. If there are a lot of them, then a clay bar and/or iron remover may be to your liking. But you may not have to do the whole car if some body panels are quite smooth.

Generally speaking, when in doubt less is more.
 
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2016.5 CX-5 GT AWD titanium/black 2016 Miata Club ST MT white
It annoys me after just a routine wash. Cracking a window is even worse. A thought occurs regarding the leaf blower which I'll have to remember when I try it. Don't let the blower end drop toward ground level lest junk bounces off the pavement onto the car.

Right, you don't want to blow a bunch of debris all over your nice clean car, especially if you're going to wax. This should go without saying but you also want to be very careful with the blower so that you don't bang it against your paint.
 
With waxes, try not to get it on the plastic trim because it leaves white marks and it's a PITA to get it off. Use some painter's masking tape to cover the black trim aress.
There is no reason for anyone to use traditional carnauba-based wax on a daily driver in this day and age. There are lots of superior products on the market that make old-school wax obsolete.

I use Sonax Polymer Net Shield and Sonax Brilliant Shine Detailer.
I apply these products to ALL exterior surfaces...paint, glass, chrome, plastic trim.

It keeps everything protected (not just the paint) and there is no concern about staining the trim/seals.
 
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