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Playing With My New Toy


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My daughter brought "Toothie" over to see us this weekend and she was filthy after her trip over the Pennines (the car not my daughter....) so I had chance to play with my new toy....

Thought I'd share with you in case any of you weren't aware of what a "foam lance" can do...



The idea is that you spray the foam onto the car and then it spends the next 20 mins "lifting" the dirt.

You then jetwash off the residue and it takes most of the dirt off with it.

In theory its just meant to be a "pre-wash" so that when you then wash the car properly afterwards, most of the dirt has already been removed and you're not scratching the paint with the grit as you wipe the residue of the dirt off the car. Although if the car's not too dirty, it can be enough on its own without any further wash stage...

You use a special "foam lance" which attaches to a pressure washer and use a special foam cleansing agent in it.

The kit seems to work just fine with my Karcher K5.50 pressure washer but I haven't tried any other lances or cleansers, so I can't compare against anything else...

It certainly makes cleaning the car more fun. One of the companies sells a pink foam - which would certainly make an impact if you were cleaning the car on the street!

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This is really spooky! About 18 months ago I was toying with the idea of purchasing a Meguiars G220 DA polisher for removing swirls etc, about the same time you posted your results on detailing your SR using a G220 polisher, this was enough for me to go ahead with my purchase. For the last week or so I have been considering purchasing a foam lance and some 'snow' foam, but I'm not really keen on having to get yet another piece of kit out (pressure washer) to wash the car. As you seem to be one step ahead of me I was wondering if you have come across any foam applicators that attatch to the hose pipe via a bottle or something?

As you can appreciate once you have washed, clayed, polished and sealed your paintwork future washes of the car have to carried out using the '2 bucket' method (I actually use 3!) to avoid reintroducing those nasty swirls. So along with the vac, hose reel, 3 buckets, wash mitts and drying towels the place is rather clutted.

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There's a device called the "Gilmour Foamaster" that attaches to a hosepipe and is meant to be able to produce the same effect using "snow foam" that you get with a pressure washer foam lance.

Gilmour Lance

I can't comment on how good it would be though, I'm afraid....

It's obviosly meant to do the same thing, but I can't help being a bit sceptical of what it can do without a pressure washer to "help".

Looking at the video. The foam seems to run off the car very quickly. Not sure if that's because that's the best the tool can do or because he's using a poor quality snow-foam. You really want the foam to stick to the car for a few minutes to allow it to lift the dirt....

EDIT - Actually there are a few "Gilmour Foam" videos on You-Tube and they're all similar. To me, it looks like the foam runs off too quickly to have any real benefit. My car looked almost the same after 10 or 15 mins - the foam just "stuck" and stayed there, lifting the dirt all the time... Can't see how these woudl do any real good as the bulk of the foam runs off almost immediately without time to soak into the dirt and lift it...

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I think you are right the Gilmour type foam guns seem a little wishy and not so much washy... So I shall invest in a proper foam lance, many thanks for that!

Any pointers regarding which foam is best will be well received as I know you'll have done your research.


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I can't make any partiicular recomendation because I've only tried one product and can't compare it to any other myself (and it seems that I can't mention any other forum where you might go for advice or comparison feedback because that was in my original post and its been deleted by a moderator).

I assume I can tell you that I used a product called Magifoam and I'm happy with it....

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I've committed myself to an Autobrite foam lance and was going to go with their Super Snow Foam until I came across the Magifoam you mentioned, I chose the latter based on it's longer dwell time which in theory should remove more dirt.

Thanks for your help. :thumbsup:

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Good luck with that Stan.

If it helps, I have the foam lance on "full -" setting, which is "max foam, min water".

I put about 150-200ml of foam into the 1000ml container and fill up with hot water from the tap.

I also lay the pressure washer hose out so that I can go right around the car in one go - so that once I've got the lance up to pressure, I don't have to release the trigger...

Whether its specific to my Karcher pressure washer (which is a good one but getting a bit old...), I don't know, but I found that it takes a couple of secs to get the pressure washer up to pressure and to deliver thick foam, For the first second or so, each time I pressed the trigger, it was runny - and if I kept pressing & releasing the trigger, the overall effect wasn't as sticky as if I went right around the car in one go...

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I don't like to use any kind of snow foams, i'm allways worried it will strip the paint of protective wax like TFR does, make any black plastic trim go grey (which TFR does!) and leave the cars paint feeling rough and unprotected. :crybaby:

This is why i never use any garage car washes or jet washes, i allways wash with the 2 bucket method, quality shampoo, lambswool mit, power attachment on a normal hose, microfibre it dry afterwards than a nice coat of Meguiars wax after.

Been doing this for years and cars still mint. :thumbsup:

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We'll see how this goes Raeman.

The Magifoam foaming cleaner is meant to be "wax safe", but the proof of the pudding, as they say, is in the eating.

Roxy's just had her winter coat of Collinite 476S wax, so we'll see how long the beading lasts compared to usual....

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If it's wax safe, then it's probably going to be ok to use. As you say though, see how it goes.

I'm not against Snow Foam i think it's a good idea, certainly speeds up washing a very dirty car and especially good for dark metallics and black cars where every swirl mark shows up worse through bad washing techniques by previous not bothered owners, ie Dirty old yellow sponge, fairly liquid and a garden bucket with rain water collected from a bowser to rinse it in. Believe it or not i know people who actually do this then they wonder why the paint on thier cars is shot! :ffs:

Rant over, let us know how it goes Alfie with the wax thing. :thumbsup:

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