Re: Claying and protecting your paint
Well, to each his own, and having worked as a professional detailer in the past, I figured the finish on a new car wouldn't need the extra, deep-cleaning that a clay bar provides. Boy was I wrong. (I have a 2012 Equinox, BTW that is only a month & a half old) If you are unsure, I recommend purchasing one (a detail-specific clay bar, not the green Play-Do from your kid's toy box) & trying it on a small portion of your car. Usually the hood & top of the car are the most in need of deep cleaning. Follow the directions and compare the small area you clean (1'x1') with the rest of the surface and see if you can feel and see a difference. In a lot of cases the car WILL shine better, of you have a lot of surface contamination.
Remember though, a clay bar is meant to do one thing, clean. It will remove all kinds of crap off the surface of your paint/clear coat, including wax. Remember to follow-up your clay work with a good, quality wax. Everyone seems to have their favorite, so go with that. Please start with a clean car, that is as dust-free as possible.
I was surprised at how much nicer my car looks and how much smoother the surfaces of my Equinox are to the touch.
Highly recommend clay bar- even on a new car!