How To Snow Foam Your Car
Snow Foaming is process of blanketing your vehicle with a layer of foam to remove as much dirt and grime as possible before a contact wash.
Here's 5 things you should know about Snow Foaming your car
1. You'll need a Snow Foam Cannon or Snow Foam Gun
A Snow Foam Cannon, or Snow Foam Lance, attaches to your pressure washer to accurately mix air pressure, water pressure and detergent to create a thick layer of suds. The foam cannon contains a brass head along with a plastic bottle, which will send the detergent mixture through a mesh filter to produce Snow Foam. As foam cannons need to be attached to different brands of pressure washers, you will need to select the correct adaptor to suit the brand of pressure washer you have.
A Snow Foam Gun on the other hand, is a garden hose attachment, which does the same as the Snow Foam Cannon, although due to less pressure from a typical garden hose, will produce a wetter foaming consistency. It will still produce a foam, but won't sit on the car for as long.
2. You'll Need The Right Pressure Washer (for Foam Cannons)
You want a high water flow rate, as close to 8L/m or more with a strong pressure rating preferably above 1800W and 2000psi. If you have anything less, swap your Snow Foam Cannon's interchangeable orifice to the 1.1mm option. Generally Lances come with a 1.25mm orifice, as it is the safest option for the largest range of pressure washers.
Generally for 1800psi and below, we would recommend the 1.1mm inlet and for and pressure over 1800psi, we would recommend the 1.25mm inlet. If you pressure washer pulsates during operation, stop immediately and switch the inlets of your snow foam cannon as the inlet will be too small for your pressure washer's water output and pressure.
3. You'll need a dedicated Snow Foam Detergent
Our Snow Foam Detergents are designed to work as both a pre-wash and a contact wash option. They have both been specifically formulated to provide a thick foam when diluted with water. We dilute 100mL of Snow Foam Detergent with 900mL warm water to create a solution still capable of producing thick foam.
Our new Snow Foam Berry Thick has specifically been formulated to create a mousse-like finish.
In comparison to regular car washing soaps or detergents, Snow Foam Detergent is specifically made to a higher concentration in order to be put through a Snow Foam Cannon or Gun to produce thicker suds. This means you're only using a small amount diluted with water compared to using a neat amount of regular car wash detergent.
4. You'll need to contact wash/ two bucket wash
Snow Foam is technically a mild traffic film remover. It's job primarily is to remove as much dirt and grime during the prewash stage, so that a two bucket wash method can follow, with only a minimal amount of dirt needing to be physically removed.
Swirl marks and hazing are caused by dirt scratching the clear coat of your car making such micro-scratches that over time, makes your paint dull and unsightly. By using Snow Foam, you are removing as much dirt before a wash mitt is even applied to your car.
There is a misconception that a significantly dirty car can be foamed on and rinsed off. Cars and bikes can get very stubborn dirt, grime, tar, bird droppings and all sorts of contaminants that require agitation to be loosened. Any chemical capable of stripping off months of dirt will either be extremely acidic or alkaline and may damage your car's paintwork over the long run. Nowadays, many car owners opt for ceramic coating, in which a pH neutral detergent is recommended to get a good balance of safe washing yet strong cleaning. A light scrub is usually all that is needed especially after a Snow Foam and rinse.
Frequently Asked Questions about Snow Foam
My pressure washer came with a soap dispenser, can I put Snow Foam Detergent in there and expect thick foam?
Pressure Washers have soap bottles that usually mix in with the water but it doesn't go through the same inlets and filters that a Snow Foam cannon has to produce the thick foam. Further to this, many pressure washer brands are competing on costs, so the complimentary "foam cannons" they provide, won't produce the same thick, luxurious foam you would get with a dedicated Snow Foam Lance/Cannon.
I want a touchless car wash system for my cars, what is my best option?
We have released a stronger, alkaline cleaning Snow Foam Detergent called Fourby Foam. This has a pH level of 9 making it a stronger cleaner. It is more dedicated for off-roaders and we would generally only recommend this for when your car is very dirty, rather than a weekly/fortnightly wash.
You are still able to do a contact wash safely after a Snow Foam layer, by ensuring you use a two bucket wash method, clean wash mitts and dedicated drying towels. Throw away your old sponges and chamois, they're old technology and will create more damage for your paintwork.
I have a pressure washer brand that isn't widely available, will a Snow Foam cannon still fit my pressure washer?
In most cases, smaller brands tend to copy the designs of bigger brands. Brands such as Ferrex, Jet USA, Aldi Workzone, Ozito, Full Boar, Alto Pro, BAR, Rapid Jet, Saber, Typhoon, Mechpro and Kinchrome pressure washers are brands we have successfully matched Snow Foam Cannon adaptors with in the past. Many models of Aldi Workzone for example, use the same adaptors as Ryobi pressure washers, that are widely available through larger hardware stores like Bunnings.
How much detergent do I need to put into my Snow Foam cannon/gun?
100mL diluted with 900mL of warm water is recommended. Give the solution a shake to mix it all and start spraying.
I have solution left over from my last wash, is it fine to leave this in the bottle?
Yes, it is safe to leave the solution in the bottle, it can definitely be reused. We would recommend rinsing out the lance head with clean water (take the detergent bottle off and run water through it) before reattaching the bottle and storing it away.
I don't have any shade on my property to wash, what should I do?
It is always recommended to wash in shade. If you don't have shade, you want to wait for a cooler part of the day, either early morning or later in the afternoon where the panels are cool to touch.
You may need to rinse off the Snow Foam solution quicker than usual to ensure the product doesn't dry onto your paint and leave any soap stains.
Why is there no soap coming out of my foam cannon?
Firstly check the top dial on my foam cannon set to - (negative) as this means less water flow and more detergent to be picked up through the tube.
If suds are only being sprayed out when the bottle is upside-down, ensure you have inserted the pickup tube to your Snow Foam Lance head, during assembly.
If you still don't have any foam coming out, you can place your Snow Foam cannon into freshly boiled water, to dissolve any old dried up soap that may have clogged any of the inlets of filters during a previous wash.
If these solutions do not work, contact us and we can speak about part replacements as it will be either covered by warranty or extremely affordable to repair.
Soap is coming out, but it is watery. What do i do?
1. Check the specification of your pressure washer. You want around 8L/min water flow and 1800psi + pressure. Replace your inlet with a 1.1mm inlet if you pressure washer doesn't have strong enough water flow or pressure.
2. Check that you have enough soap mixture
3. Check the tube is connected to the brass foam cannon head
4. Check the top dial is set to negative (-)
If nothing else works, contact us!
I just bought a new car, What do i need to get started to keep my paint looking its best for longest?
At Snow Foam Australia, we have many kits for our car loving friends. We would recommend the Starter Kits for anyone who already has towels and mitts.
We would recommend the Premium or Supreme kits for anyone who wants a intermediate package with the towels and mitts, and may want to add a car care product like spray wax, shield spray or wheel cleaners to their order.
For the car lover who wants a complete package, with the best car care products from start to finish, we have our ultimate kits that allow exterior and interior cleaning products for any car.
If you have ceramic coating, we would suggest our ceramic coating maintenance kit, in which we specifically choose products that are safe and won't impact your paint protection's hydrophobic properties.