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Sunday caravan cleaning and polishing


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Every year I polish the caravan to try and help keep it clean throughout the year, I usually use whichever polish Tesco are selling cheaply.  This year i took a different approach so thought I'd post about it as the results have been very good.  Note that this is how I did it, you may do it differently.

 

We are not on a main road (at the bottom of a cul-de-sac) and the caravan sits down the side of the house so isn't really exposed to any unusual grime.  It gets washed down after the last trip of the year (usually October half term) and isn't covered over winter.

 

  • I start with a good wash using Traffic Film Remover, I have always used this but be aware it is very strong and causes skin dryness and can also tarnish some metal surfaces.  I start with the roof, firstly washing around the (opened) roof lights.  I use an old tooth brush for stubborn stains and black streaks.  I then rinse thoroughly.
  • Next I wash it again using a cheap car shampoo and rinse thoroughly.
  • Next I go round it and use a mildly abrasive car polish (Simonize) to polish out any remaining stubborn black streaks.  At this point the caravan is completely clean.
  • I then used a new polish.  This is made by Meguiar's, it's very expensive at around £23 but I thought I'd have a go for once.  I started with the roof, polishing the entire surface, the roof on our Swift is fibreglass and is quite a coarse surface finish that really retains the muck.  I then did the rest of the caravan, including behind all of the windows.

 

The results are fantastic, it's hard to photograph a shine on a white surface but compared to previous polishes this stuff is brilliant.  I used about half the bottle on our caravan.  It isn't an abrasive polish and hence won't remove any stubborn marks like some polishes do but as a shine restorer and sealer I was very impressed.  Note that this is on a caravan who's external panels are all fibreglass so I cannot comment on it's performance or suitable on aluminium skinned or ABS panels.

 

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2018 Volvo V90 and 2018 Swift Sprite Quattro EB

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Good to know and excellent results. You are much more thorough than me though, I just clean ours once a year - it took about three hours yesterday.

 

I'm looking for something to bring back the shine of the caravan front. We have some stubborn marks and it's a little dull. This is a 2016 Swift. 

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You certainly got a good result but can I suggest you start initial washdown from the bottom of the van and work upwards. This can prevent streaking which can be caused by water coming off the roof over dirt on the caravan sides. As it runs down it has the effect of cleaning unevenly and can be difficult to remove. 

I personally use Fenwicks products and recommend you read the usage instructions they supply.

ie Wash the van from bottom to top and leave the roof till last.

Happy caravanning. 

Edited by Lefthand Down

Ford C-Max and Coachman Festival 380/2 SE 2006    Motto  Carpe Diem

Still trying to find the perfect pitch. ..110 amp Battery+ 65 watt roof mounted Solar and 25 watt Wind Turbine. LED lighting. Status Aerial 315. Loose chattels marked with UV,. Safefill Gas Fitted.

 

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Hi Scarab

I have a 2018 swift on which the front had gone "flat" i have now brought this back to a very high shine in fact better than when new.

Heres what i did, washed the whole van with Autosmart Caravan and Motorhome Cleaner rinsed it off thourghly 

then polished a very small section at a time with Aurosmart EVO1 fine finnishing compound using a micrfiber pad and lots of water from a spray bottle then buffed to a shine. On completion of the whole front using this method (about 4hours) i then waxed with Meguiars Gold Class Caranuba wax.

I whole heartedly recommend this method but it is a lot of work but well worth it..

 

Regards

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1 hour ago, BeeWTee said:

I whole heartedly recommend this method but it is a lot of work but well worth it..

 Thanks Bee.  I may have to steel myself and get it done! I think the toughest bit might be getting it clean enough in step 1 - there are some pretty ingrained tar marks when you look closely (well, not even that closely!). I may have to try the Autosmart instead of Fenwicks.

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1 hour ago, Scarab said:

 Thanks Bee.  I may have to steel myself and get it done! I think the toughest bit might be getting it clean enough in step 1 - there are some pretty ingrained tar marks when you look closely (well, not even that closely!). I may have to try the Autosmart instead of Fenwicks.


Cleaning a caravan properly takes ages but I find it quite satisfying. Best to set aside at least half a day with no interruptions and ensure someone is on tea/coffee making duty!

2018 Volvo V90 and 2018 Swift Sprite Quattro EB

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9 minutes ago, GaryB1969 said:


Cleaning a caravan properly takes ages but I find it quite satisfying. Best to set aside at least half a day with no interruptions and ensure someone is on tea/coffee making duty!

 

Indeed - three hours yesterday and I know I'm not very thorough compared to some! The problem is justifying that time to other family members...

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27 minutes ago, Scarab said:

 

Indeed - three hours yesterday and I know I'm not very thorough compared to some! The problem is justifying that time to other family members...

 

I know what you mean, there's always a growing list of other stuff to do.  I plan in advance and tell folks I'll be "out of the office and uncontactable" for an afternoon, that way they make other arrangements and leave me in peace!

2018 Volvo V90 and 2018 Swift Sprite Quattro EB

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