Washing your car is a critical to keeping unwanted contaminants off your vehicle that can damage your car's finish. This includes gasoline, bird droppings, tree sap, insects and even dust. You should hand wash your with a mild detergent made specifically for automotive washing twice a month. Only use a clean sponge or soft cloth to avoid scratching your paint's surface. Dirt in your cleaning implement can do more harm than good.
Also don't forget to rinse off your vehicle's undercarriage to keep chemicals and other contaminants from the bottom of your car.
A month of two after you get your vehicle painted, you should wax it. Then wax it every 3 or 4 months or so after that to keep protecting that new finish. Make sure to use a quality automotive wax, that does not use abrasive cleaning agents like silicone. Keys to a good wax job:
- Apply a thin coat of wax with small, circular strokes to the entire vehicle
- Do not wax your vehicle in direct sunlight if at all possible
- Let the was dry completely before wiping it off.
- Use a soft cloth like a terry cloth towel and wipe off the wax using the same small circular strokes but this time apply firm pressure