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What are the major "do's" and "don'ts" of taking care of vinyl le mans stripes?

mustangrapidred21

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Now that I've had these gloss white stripes on my Rapid Red coupe for a month and a half, I would like to get some good advice about how to care for them (washing, waxing, etc). Taking it to a car wash (no touch, do-it-yourself)? Washing at home? Waxing paint and/or stripes, etc.? Are there things that I should NEVER do?
Thanks for any input you can provide.
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YULQQKN4

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if youre going to wax the car, tape off the stripes :) buddy learned the hard way
 

cerbomark

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no pressure washer near the decals.
If they are gloss finish I don t see why waxing is out? If it s Matt or rough then no wax.
I wouldn't car wash any car.
never rub it when dry. (like any other part of the car)
go easy on the edges with whatever you are doing.
 
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GTP

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The vinyl is softer than your paint clear coat. The stripes hold up okay for routine hand washing.

The problem is when you encounter something that needs "wash grinding" or "fingernail plucking". You can inflict swirls or scratches.

I always clear film all the upper surfaces of my cars, and so that fully covers the stripes. Clear film on the front bumper and at least the center section of the rear bumper also protects the the rest of the stripes.

Of course this applies to gloss stripes. But with the protection I can grind and pluck away! :like:
 

Poniedgt5.0

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I use Top Coat F11 clear sealer on everything
 

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MiamiGT350

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The vinyl is softer and scratches/swirls quite easily. If you apply Adam's Graphene or a similar ceramic, it will help protect against YV faid, mildly harden it against swirls, and keep them clean.

If you end up with water spots or scratches, you can polish and remove them from the stripes with Chrome polish and your finger (I have done this).

You can seal the edges using something like RVinyl's SealIt pen off Amazon.

Best protection overall is to just ppf over the entire hood/stripe.
 

kilobravo

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no pressure washer near the decals.
I have to disagree with that statement, Mark, you just have to be careful and not get too close to the vinyl. This applies to electric PW's. BUT, if you're using a gas-powered PW, with 3000+ PSI, I would agree. Those units should never be used for car washing. My Kranzle only puts out 1500 PSI and it's variable down to 300 or so.

Additionally, a much wider nozzle will also help the situation with 40 degrees being the generally accepted spread for safe washing. I had vinyl on my last Shelby and washed it at least a couple hundred times with a PW and had no problems with the vinyl.
 

cerbomark

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I have to disagree with that statement, Mark, you just have to be careful and not get too close to the vinyl. This applies to electric PW's. BUT, if you're using a gas-powered PW, with 3000+ PSI, I would agree. Those units should never be used for car washing. My Kranzle only puts out 1500 PSI and it's variable down to 300 or so.

Additionally, a much wider nozzle will also help the situation with 40 degrees being the generally accepted spread for safe washing. I had vinyl on my last Shelby and washed it at least a couple hundred times with a PW and had no problems with the vinyl.
Yes, I would agree with your statement, but some people may not understand the fine points of these statements and WILL screw up their decals.
 

ezracer

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I try to keep the sun off my car. I do not have a garage but faithfully use a quality car cover with a high UV factor. Also, several times a month I apply Meguiars Quick Detailer to the stripes.
So far my stripes are 6 years old and look pretty good.
🤞

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