Best products for cleaning the plane

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BlueYonder
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Best products for cleaning the plane

Post by BlueYonder »

The carbon fiber skin of our planes is SO shiny. And the clarity of the domes is such a big part of the experience. What products do you use to keep your plane clean and beautiful? There's a lot on the market, and as a new owner, I don't know where to begin.

Also, what's your cleaning routine? How much, how often? I'm pretty picky about keeping my cars clean, and am likely to be even more particular about having the Wild Blue Yonder perfect for every flight.
The highest art form of all is a human being in control of himself and his airplane in flight, urging the spirit of a machine to match his own. -- Richard Bach
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Chris
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Re: Best products for cleaning the plane

Post by Chris »

Here's a link to an older thread about cleaning the plexiglass windscreen. (TL;DR - Plexus is popular)

And another thread here about bug removal.

We clean off the bugs after every flight and try to do a full degrease wash and wax at least once a year. Our DA40 stays hangared so it stays pretty clean except for the smashed bugs.
Chris
N449TS / DA42-NG / 42.AC049
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CharlesMc
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Re: Best products for cleaning the plane

Post by CharlesMc »

I'm a Windex kind of guy, go over the plane a section at a time with the pump bottle and a stack of microfiber cloths, cuts the grime on the belly, bug splats on the leading edges and the prop . Be careful about over-spraying near the canopy, since it contains ammonia. Follow up with some periodic waxing of the right composition, (no silicone) and your new beast will be looking great. Chris' note above is spot on about the care of the canopy/windscreen. The -40 isn't a plane that needs Hoppe #9 to clean up, its pretty simple and enjoys the attention.

Charlie
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Re: Best products for cleaning the plane

Post by Colin »

The DA40 came with a bunch of cleaning products with it when it was brand new. Poking around it looks like this little kit. No silicon is the big thing to keep in mind. And the Plexus is great, but there are three adjustments I made when I got the new plane:

1. After each flight use Lemon Pledge on the leading edge of the wing and a little polishing glove. That removes the bugs and leaves behind a little waxy layer to make it easier next time. On the previous plane the bugs got sort of cemented on by time.

2. This foaming glass cleaner is great. The key is to lift the dust off the plexi before you move it with a rag. The Plexus and other waxing products won't do that. So that's what I use to clean the windows (usually before any long flight or any family flight).

3. Using these ArmorAll cleaning wipes after a flight to get off the oily stuff that might come out the exhaust or drains and streak the white parts of the airframe. A little more of an issue with the diesels, but I wish I had done it on my DA40.

I really need to get a creeper to put next to the tie down spot, though.
Colin Summers, PP Multi-Engine IFR, ~2,600hrs
colin@mightycheese.com
http://www.flyingsummers.com
N972RD DA42 G1000 2.0 s/n 42.AC100
N971RD DA40 G1000 s/n 40.508 (traded)
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Lou
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Re: Best products for cleaning the plane

Post by Lou »

A hangar neighbor gave me a great tip for cleaning oil residue off the underside: Simple Green and shop towels. Just work your way along with a creeper. Also try not to fill oil above 6 1/2 quarts.
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Re: Best products for cleaning the plane

Post by gordsh »

Hi Louis, which Simple Green do you use? I would like to try this but notice that there are 3 variants: Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner, Simple Green Industrial Cleaner and Degreaser, Simple Green Clean Building All-Purpose Cleaner. I am thinking the All-Purpose Cleaner?
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Re: Best products for cleaning the plane

Post by Lance Murray »

I would NOT use Windex. It's not worth the chance of overspray getting on your acrylic. Mild soap and water is all you need.

CharlesMc wrote:I'm a Windex kind of guy, go over the plane a section at a time with the pump bottle and a stack of microfiber cloths, cuts the grime on the belly, bug splats on the leading edges and the prop . Be careful about over-spraying near the canopy, since it contains ammonia. Follow up with some periodic waxing of the right composition, (no silicone) and your new beast will be looking great. Chris' note above is spot on about the care of the canopy/windscreen. The -40 isn't a plane that needs Hoppe #9 to clean up, its pretty simple and enjoys the attention.

Charlie
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Re: Best products for cleaning the plane

Post by Lance Murray »

There is a Simple Green formulated specifically for aviation. Standard Simple Green can cause corrosion on aluminum.


http://www.sportys.com/pilotshop/simple ... pkQAvD_BwE

gordsh wrote:Hi Louis, which Simple Green do you use? I would like to try this but notice that there are 3 variants: Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner, Simple Green Industrial Cleaner and Degreaser, Simple Green Clean Building All-Purpose Cleaner. I am thinking the All-Purpose Cleaner?
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Re: Best products for cleaning the plane

Post by Willy »

I use Aero Cosmetics Wash Wax All on the canopy and leading edges after every flight. It takes 10 minutes but as long as I don't let the bugs sit there for a week they wipe off very easily.
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00X04JRMU/re ... 0892713236
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Re: Best products for cleaning the plane

Post by deeohgee »

Question for the people that are using a Wash and Wax product, can you use a regular car one? Assuming it’s the same thing as Aero Cosmetics?
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