Mazda Mazda6: Exterior Care - Maintenance and Care - Mazda6 Owners ManualMazda Mazda6: Exterior Care

Follow all label and container directions when using a chemical cleaner or polish.

Read all warnings and cautions.

Maintaining the Finish

Washing

CAUTION:

When the wiper lever is in the AUTO position and the ignition switch is in the ON position, the wipers may move automatically in the following cases:

sensor is touched. If the windshield above the rain sensor is touched.

sensor is wiped with a cloth. If the windshield above the rain sensor is wiped with a cloth.

a hand or other object. If the windshield is struck with a hand or other object.

a hand or other object from inside the vehicle. If the rain sensor is struck with a hand or other object from inside the vehicle.

Be careful not to pinch hands or fingers as it may cause injury, or damage the wipers. When washing or servicing your Mazda, make sure the wiper lever is in the OFF position.

To help protect the finish from rust and deterioration, wash your Mazda thoroughly and frequently, at least once a month, with lukewarm or cold water.

If the vehicle is washed improperly, the paint surface could be scratched. Here are some examples of how scratching could occur.

Scratches occur on the paint surface when:

- The vehicle is washed without first rinsing off dirt and other foreign matter.

- The vehicle is washed with a rough, dry, or dirty cloth.

- The vehicle is washed at a car wash that uses brushes that are dirty or too stiff.

- Cleansers or wax containing abrasives are used.

NOTE:

- Mazda is not responsible for scratches caused by automatic car washes or improper washing.

- Scratches are more noticeable on vehicles with darker paint finishes.

To minimize scratches on the vehicle's paint finish:

- Rinse off any dirt or other foreign matter using lukewarm or cold water before washing.

- Use plenty of lukewarm or cold water and a soft cloth when washing the vehicle. Do not use a nylon cloth.

- Rub gently when washing or drying the vehicle.

- Take your vehicle only to a car wash that keeps its brushes well maintained.

- Don't use abrasive cleansers or wax that contain abrasives.

CAUTION:

Don't use steel wool, abrasive cleaners, or strong detergents containing highly alkaline or caustic agents on chrome-plated or anodized aluminum parts. This may damage the protective coating; also, cleaners and detergents may discolor or deteriorate the paint.

Pay special attention to removing salt, dirt, mud, and other foreign material from the underside of the fenders, and make sure the drain holes in the lower edges of the doors and rocker panels are clean.

Insects, tar, tree sap, bird droppings, industrial fallout, and similar deposits can damage the finish if not removed immediately. When prompt washing with plain water is ineffective, use a mild soap made for use on vehicles.

Thoroughly rinse off all soap with lukewarm or cold water. Don't allow soap to dry on the finish.

After washing the vehicle, dry it with a clean chamois to prevent water spots from forming.

WARNING:

Dry wet brakes by driving very slowly and applying the brakes lightly until brake performance is normal:

Driving with wet brakes is dangerous. Increased stopping distance or the vehicle pulling to one side when braking could result in a serious accident. Light braking will indicate whether the brakes have been affected.

Waxing

Your vehicle needs to be waxed when water no longer beads on the finish.

Always wash and dry the vehicle before waxing it. In addition to the vehicle body, wax the metal trim to maintain its luster.

1. Use wax which contains no abrasives.

Waxes containing abrasive will remove paint and could damage bright metal parts.

2. Use a good grade of natural wax for metallic, mica, and solid colors.

3. When waxing, coat evenly with the sponge supplied or a soft cloth.

4. Wipe off the wax with a soft cloth.

NOTE:

A spot remover to remove oil, tar, and similar materials will usually also take off the wax.

Rewax these areas even if the rest of the vehicle doesn't need it.

Repairing Damage to the Finish

Deep scratches or chips on the finish should be repaired promptly. Exposed metal quickly rusts and can lead to major repairs.

CAUTION:

If your Mazda is damaged and needs metal parts repaired or replaced, make sure the body shop applies anti-corrosion materials to all parts, both repaired and new. This will prevent them from rusting.

Bright-Metal Maintenance

- Use tar remover to remove road tar and insects. Never do this with a knife or similar tool.

- To prevent corrosion on bright-metal surfaces, apply wax or chrome preservative and rub it to a high luster.

- During cold weather or in coastal areas, cover bright-metal parts with a coating of wax or preservative heavier than usual. It would also help to coat them with noncorrosive petroleum jelly or some other protective compound.

CAUTION:

Don't use steel wool, abrasive cleaners, or strong detergents containing highly alkaline or caustic agents on chrome-plated or anodized aluminum parts. This may result in damage to the protective coating and cause discoloration or paint deterioration.

Underbody Maintenance

Road chemicals and salt used for ice and snow removal and solvents used for dust control may collect on the underbody. If not removed, they will speed up rusting and deterioration of such underbody parts as fuel lines, frame, floor pan, and exhaust system, even though these parts may be coated with anti-corrosive material.

Thoroughly flush the underbody and wheel housings with lukewarm or cold water at the end of each winter. Try also to do this every month.

Pay special attention to these areas because they easily hide mud and dirt. It will do more harm than good to wet down the road grime without removing it.

The lower edges of doors, rocker panels, and frame members have drain holes that should not be clogged. Water trapped there will cause rusting.

WARNING:

Dry wet brakes by driving very slowly and applying the brakes lightly until brake performance is normal:

Driving with wet brakes is dangerous. Increased stopping distance or the vehicle pulling to one side when braking could result in a serious accident. Light braking will indicate whether the brakes have been affected.

Aluminum Wheel Maintenance

A protective coating is provided over the aluminum wheels. Special care is needed to protect this coating.

NOTE:

- Do not use a wire brush or any abrasive cleaner, polishing compound, or solvent on aluminum wheels. They may damage the coating.

- Only use a mild soap or neutral detergent and always use a sponge or soft cloth to clean the wheels.

Rinse thoroughly with lukewarm or cold water. Also, be sure to clean the wheels after driving on dusty or salted roads. This helps prevent corrosion.

- Avoid washing your vehicle in an automatic car wash that uses high-speed or hard brushes.

- If your aluminum wheels lose luster, wax the wheels.

(With Tire Pressure Monitoring System).

Check special requirements for Tire Pressure Monitoring System.

Refer to Tires and Wheels.

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