New Cars: they can be scary!

As I’ve gotten older, and the nest is empty, I am finding physical hobbies have a great appeal. My day job is intellectually intense, but purely desk work.

Going out to the garage and working on a car is good therapy for me. I can be alone and can put on some good music, and my brain is focused on the work at hand and not the stresses of the day job. To think about it, my grandfather did the same thing but even more. He was always puttering out in the garage.

You’re right. To be fair, I do have my garage queen although it’s still in the mechanical repair state. I also have a sporty car as a daily driver and don’t sweat it.

Again, tyvm for your responses here. And I fully agree, my job is the same way and I use gaming, reading and miniature painting to destress and keep my brain occupied so it doesn’t drift into work-related territories.

My car is 10 days old and has been parked in a garage, driven to work 3x, and has about 280 miles on it. I honestly think I can skip all of the prep steps except for washing with dawn to remove the wax and the isopropanol. That said, though, would a buffer be worth it for the ceramic or would MF towels via hand be fine?

I’ve always wanted a third garage bay, to have a project car, or just to have a summer car. But never was able to make it happen. Probably for the best–I’d most likely fill the third bay up with crap from the basement anyhow.

That’s why my daily driver lives outside!

I have never used my buffer on the ceramic. You apply with a microfiber towel and then buff off the residue.

Once my ceramic is applied, I just maintain the car with normal car washes (except it stays cleaner). The buffer only comes out next time I do ceramic. Well i also used them to refinish the headlights on one of my son’s cars.

I did not mention you can ceramic not only the paint, but the painted plastic. You can even ceramic the wheels if you want (but they would be the possible place you’d have iron from the brakes). I was just reading you can ceramic the windshield too, but I’ve not done that myself.

Me too!

This is the way.

Not in northern Vermont winters! Being able to go out into the garage and not have to clear off many inches of snow or ice is a huge perk!

Got a quote from Ziebart for their ceramic coat and they want $1200 (sale price, typically $1500). Ouch.

Everything here is spot on (see what I did there?). The next post from @eliandi too. There are some professionally applied ceramics that last longer, but they may require periodic maintenance. Also, brand new cars can have significant scratches, either from travel, or from the dealership washing them.

@John_Reynolds do not skip the steps like the iron removal. I think you will be wasting your time. The Ziebart price is high unless it’s a three-layer service with a lifetime warranty, in which case, I’d say it’s quite good.

I sell these services for a living, and happy to answer questions, but @eliandi has done a great job

100% this. So many of the houses around here have their cars parked outside because their garages are full of whatever. Come winter I sit in my nice front facing office and watch and laugh as they have to go out in the cold wind and brush and scrape their cars before they can go anywhere. I’m happy to have left that shit behind me when I bought my own house, or technically, the year before that when I had an apartment with a garage.

I never really appreciated a garage until I lived here, for sure. We only got our first house when I was in high school; until then, it was always apartments, Army housing of some sort, or maybe a rental house, and a lot of the time we were in warm climates. The first place I bought was a townhouse with no garage, but it was in Virginia. It wasn’t until I moved to Vermont in 1997 that I truly appreciated the ability to park under cover. The apartment I rented, before moving into the house I live in now, at least had covered parking.

It’s bad enough though when I’m at work and I have to park out in the open lots. That can be fun!

I appreciate the kind words from someone who is a pro at this. My son and I self taught ourselves this process using videos and articles, and then practiced on the family fleet.

After my wax job Sat morning, the car is shining like crazy so I’m sorta leaning toward having a PPF wrap on just the front the protect it and sticking with wax. Though that said I have no idea how much a ceramic coat helps protect the paint itself.

Ceramic Car Coating: Z-Gloss® - Ziebart

This is their page, no idea if it’s a single- or three-layer service.

Had my first gas tank refill today, an even $40 with premium, got about 33mpg out of that first tank, and also had my first bird strike across the hood and front windshield on the way home from work. Immediately got the poop off but it left a ‘stain’ on the hood, maybe the size of a quarter. I tried warm water and soap, I added baking soda, neither worked. Then I saw a YT video on using heat, so got the wife’s blow dryer and sure as hell that worked in about 2 minutes.

Does the Miata use premium? My Mazda 3 uses plain old regular, which is a relief, after years of having pay for premium gas.

Yeah, Mazda strongly recommends premium gas for their newer engines.

Reasonable for ten years, I would think. One thing to consider, though: the best ppf on the market is Xpel. They require you to use their ceramic on the ppf or you lose the warranty. So if you are going to do Xpel ppf, talk to that shop about the possibility of doing Ceramic as well. They might also have a combo deal of some kind.

Also, make sure you understand the warranty requirements. Will there be a cost for the maintenance? What do they cover/not cover?

Hmm, that’s a new one on me. Mine’s a 2023, and I’ve only ever put in 87 octane. Nothing in the docs or from the dealer ever indicated otherwise. For their turbos, maybe, but for the 2.5 Skyactiv NA engine? Maybe the Miata has different requirements; it’s a different engine I think?