So, you have decided to join the fast-growing and incredibly passionate community of Plasti Dippers. Plasti Dip has exploded in popularity thanks to its ease of use, versatility and effectiveness.
Especially in the world of cars and motorcycles, Plasti Dip has opened the door for hobbyists to explore paint design and color in new and fun ways.
For others less interested in aesthetics, Plasti Dip is a great alternative to traditional paints and doe not require expensive automotive spray gun kits. It is a cheap and simple way to add a coat of color or protection to any surface.
However, once you’ve dipped your car in your favorite color it’s important to know how to properly care for and clean the surface.
This article provides the basics to make sure your fresh coat does not suffer from a bad cleaning job.
What is Plasti Dip?
Plasti Dip first arrived on the market in 1972 and was originally used for dipping tool handles for a comfortable, firm grip. It is a spray-on, specialty rubber coating that can be utilized on every kind of surface from cars to homes.
Whether using spray cans or using a special Plasti Dip spray gun, after air-drying and a curing period, Plasti Dip protects against moisture, corrosion, abrasion, and even acids. It is highly weather-resistant and can withstand temperatures as low as -30 degrees Fahrenheit and as high as 200 degrees Fahrenheit.
It remains flexible over time and will not crack or become brittle. Despite its strength and durability, it is easy to peel and remove from most surfaces.
What to Avoid When Cleaning Plasti Dip
Because Plasti Dip does not hold up well against certain cleaners, avoid using things like solvents and paint thinners.
Furthermore, for dipped cars, avoid spilling gasoline on the surface.
All of these substances can cause Plasti Dip to bubble, thin, and peel. When refilling your dipped car, exercise caution to avoid drippage and consider investing in a special drip guard.
When cleaning a Plasti Dip surface, simple soap and water will suffice.
How to Wash a Plasti Dip Surface
Whatever the surface, washing by hand with a bucket of soap and water will work best. If you are cleaning a dipped car be sure to use a lint-free cloth and consider special automotive soap for maximum effectiveness.
That said, even dish soap will work just fine and won’t damage the coating. There are special cloths and soaps available specifically for dipped surfaces, but these are only necessary if you are looking to be extra cautious.
One major benefit of Plasti Dip is that after washing your car, you don’t need to add on a layer of wax, protectant, or finish.
Plasti Dip already protects against corrosive elements like salt and UV light.
If you are looking to clean a broader surface or want to speed up the process, a power washer or pressure sprayer is perfectly fine.
As long as the dipped surface has been allowed to cure over the course of a few weeks and has a sufficient number of layers (around 5), peeling and tearing should not occur unless it was already present in the first place. To be safe, do not go above 1800 psi and only use a strength of pressure appropriate for the job at hand.
It may be tempting to jack up the pressure, but it increases the risk of damage.
Much like a pressure sprayer, car washes should be just fine for a dipped car. As long as there are at least 5 coats that have been given a few weeks to cure and the surface is not already peeling, a car wash is safe to use.
If there are rips and tears already on the Plasti Dip these can worsen significantly once the cleaning process begins. This means a proper application is essential for safe cleaning.
When the Plasti Dip is Damaged
If a tear occurs or the dip begins to peel prematurely, there is only one solution. If you want a fresh coat you will have to peel off the Plasti Dip. Luckily, this is exactly what Plasti Dip is designed for.
Simply peel off the layer, thoroughly clean the raw surface, and reapply the dip. If it has been applied properly the dip should come off in large pieces. If it is peeling off in tiny shreds, you can spray on a sloppy layer to add density and then continue peeling.
Plasti Dip is as easy to clean and maintain as it is to use. It simply takes the time to properly apply it in the first place and you are guaranteed for up to 3 years of durability.
Avoid harsh chemicals and stick to the simple stuff and there should not be a problem.
Good Luck and Happy Dipping!