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June 15, 2011

10

Initial Impressions: ValetPRO

by Kenneth Tang

Care for a cuppa tea? Initial initial impressions on ValetPRO’s Poseidon Carnauba Wash, Citrus Bling, Achilles Prep and Orion’s Shield. UK products in the house yo!

First up we have the Poseidon Carnauba Wash, what a cool name for a car wash.

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I used up the whole bottle but seems like it wasn’t enough for the 5 gallon bucket as the suds were pretty weak.

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After rinsing, I did not find it to add any sort of ‘wax’ to the finish, however, the test car is a neglected one and is seldom washed and never been waxed or polished. On waxed surfaces, this car wash might do a better job maintaining the wax that’s already on the surface. For unwaxed paint, you are probably better off using a cheaper alternative.

Poseidon Carnauba Wash gets a 6/10.

Next, we have the Citrus Bling, a pretty unique product as it has different uses based on the dilution ratio.

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It can be used for the following:
1. Fast Wax (protects for 1 month)
2. Drying Aid (dilute 1:3 parts water)
3. Quick detailer (dilutes 1:3 upto 1:10)
4. Glass Cleaner
5. Clay lube (dilutes 1:16)
6. Paint clenz and gloss enhancer

As a clay lube, it definitely works, but as I mentioned in the video, it does feel like using plain water as it isn’t as slick as using Meguiar’s Last Touch diluted 1:1. Having said that, it’s a much more economical alternative.

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As a glass cleaner, it manages to shift oily stains and grime from glass. As shown below:

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What I don’t like about it is that because it contains some type of ‘wax’, it will leave a film on the surface which has to be buffed off with a dry cloth. This is okay for paintwork as the ‘wax’ effect is beneficial. On (interior)glass however, I’m not too sure if I want my glass cleaner to be ‘waxy’. If I missed some parts where I did not buff off, it will stick out like a sore thumb when the driver sees it in the rear view mirror, or at night when the street lamps shine through the windows and highlight any ‘haze’ on the glass.

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A glass cleaner should be one that flashes off not too quickly, and as cleanly as possible. Although I do wipe it wet and buff off dry with a second cloth with regular glass cleaners, I have to put more effort in the 2nd buffing stage with Citrus Bling. More effort = less time spent on other areas of the car = no good.

As a detailing spray, it works very well, and removes any fresh contaminants with ease thanks to its citrus cleaning power. Just remember to rebuff with a dry cloth as it does not flash off as cleanly as Meguiar’s Ultimate Quick Detailer/Ultimate Quik Wax.

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Overall, I would give Citrus Bling a 6/10

Next up, we have Achilles Prep, a paint preparation product that can be used by hand and machine.

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When using it by hand, it does a good job at cleaning and also felt well lubed, so it was very easy to work with. In the video, I was putting quite a lot of pressure as I wanted to test the abrasive abilities by hand. You could see it managed to clear up quite a lot of the swirl marks and hazing on the paint, but I also inflicted some straight line scratches as well. Not the best technique for this product.

Using Achilles prep on the machine however, brings it to a whole new level.

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When using it with a white polishing pad, it cleared out 95% of the light swirls, leaving deeper scratches behind, however, when you look closely there are still some light pittings (dots) on the paint, which could be reduced by cutting deeper. So I switched to an orange cutting pad and worked it in on a different panel. Same swirl removal as well as pitting reduction, deeper scratches however, were still there. I was thoroughly impressed with this polish.

Good thing about this Proton’s paint(Kansai), is that it is medium-soft, soft enough to correct most defects with DA, and hard enough that it is able to withstand hazing/micro-marring from a cutting pad. But if you look closely at the before/after video after using the orange cutting pad, you could see some very slight hazing around the LED bulb reflection. You can follow up with a softer pad to remove it.

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I then tried to see what is the most cut I could get out of it. Used it with a non-twisted lambswool pad to remove some scuffing and paint transfer.

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Sweeeeeeet! It did took me about 3-4 passes to completely remove it. The areas which still have scuffing has gone through the base coat, so no saving those areas.

Using it by hand, does a great job of cleaning.

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Some before and afters of using Achilles Prep with Orange Cutting Pad over the whole car.

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I’d give Achilles Prep an 8/10

Next up, Dionysus Trim Glitz. Just a quick review of this product.

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On smooth plastic, it left an okay finish, you need to rub it continuously to even out the finish. It should work better on textured trim.

Without any durability testing, Dionysus Trim Glitz gets a 7/10

Finally, Orion’s Shield, the paint liquid paint sealant in ValetPRO’s range.

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I wanted to get maximum durability out of it, so it was applied via DA to push the sealant into the pores of the paint and ensure even application. I applied it over the whole car, but when I came to buff the first panel that I applied to, it wouldn’t even shift. It dries up very quickly, so I went to the most recent panel that I applied on, also would not shift. So I used some citrus bling, the wet cloth managed to ‘grab’ the sealant and buffed off to a smooth slick finish. Water repellency is like any polymer sealant (think Meguiar’s #21), not super fast or super round.

Because of it’s not so easy ease of use, Orion’s Shield gets a 6/10 for this initial impression, durability is still unknown.

Since this car belongs to a relative and I borrowed it for testing, I cleaned up the rear seats as well. Young kids and Milo is a dangerous combo to have in a car.

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It was scrubbed with Porter Cable’s Aqua Brush and Meguiar’s All Purpose Cleaner (diluted 10:1).

All in all testing the ValetPRO range has been a unique experience, they definitely are not perfect products, but like all car care brands, there are certain gems in the entire range. For ValetPRO, it’s definitely Achilles Prep, if it is conveniently available in your country, I’d say give it a shot. There is still one more product that has not been tested, Artemis Wax Seal, will leave that for another comparison against another paste wax (probably Collinite 476S).

HUGE THANKS to Chris at Car Products Tested for the ValetPRO samples. If you’d like to test out products without shelling out the cash for a full bottle which you aren’t probably going to finish, Car Products Tested sells many different products in small sample sizes, allowing you to satisfy your urge to try out the product that everyone is talking about on the forums, without breaking your wallet.

Well, that’s all for this post, thanks for looking! Feel free to leave your comments below.

Next post will probably be on how to remove waterspot etchings from glass.

Till then, cheers mate! (UK style)

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10 Comments Post a comment
  1. Anchorman
    Jun 15 2011

    Another very interesting and informative review. Out of all the detailing sites I’ve visited Kenneth, yours has presented the most objective tests and results.

    Thanks for all your efforts and keep up the good work!

    Reply
    • Jun 17 2011

      Thank you for your kind words. 🙂

      Reply
  2. Veloc
    Jun 15 2011

    Another very enlightening post where all can benefit and learn!

    Reply
    • Jun 17 2011

      Thanks bro!!

      Reply
  3. Jun 15 2011

    Very good effort Ken!

    Reply
    • Jun 17 2011

      Thanks Toni 🙂

      Reply
  4. Jul 21 2011

    got Porter Cable’s Aqua Brush pic?

    Reply
  5. Jul 21 2011

    got Porter Cable’s Aqua Brush pic? Mind to share how to clean seat with APC

    Reply
    • Jul 23 2011

      Hi Kenny, its this one here:
      http://www.autogeek.net/porter-cable-brushes.html

      Just spray one the cleaner, scrub, and extract out the wet seat with a wet/dry vacuum. Leave some time for it to fully dry.

      Reply
      • Jul 23 2011

        thanks for info. will try it

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