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Application Guide - General Guidelines

Surface Cleaning

A clean, dry surface is essential to the success of any coatings application. Our systems include products and procedures which will enable you to obtain proper surface conditions.

Remember – Clean before sanding. Sanding often melts grease, wax and oils into the surface making it impossible to obtain a clean surface.

Detergent Scrubbing

Many applicators scrub the surface they are going to paint with powdered household scouring cleanser and a 3MTM Scotch-Brite® Pad before any other prep work is performed. This is an excellent practice as careful observation of the rinse water will tell you when you have a clean surface. Breaks, holes or beading of the rinse water indicates areas which need additional attention.

Full guide

Download a .pdf of the full guide

Two Cloth Cleaning Method

  1. The surface should be cleaned thoroughly of all dust, using a vacuum or clean dry compressed air to blow while wiping with clean, oil free, dry cotton cloths.
  2. Soak one cloth in Awlgrip Wipe-Down Solvent (NA/AP: Awlprep T0008, Awlprep Plus T0115 or Awlprep 400 T0170; EU: Surface Cleaner T0340). Use this cloth to wet the surface.
  3. Use a dry second cloth to wipe the surface dry and lift the contamination off the surface.
  4. * Work small areas (4 sq. ft or less) to keep the surface cleaner from drying before the second rag wipes it clean.
    * Repeat steps 2 and 3, changing rags frequently, until the surface is residue free.


Wiping the surface with one wet cloth only smears contamination around. Be sure the cloth used does not have any contaminates; clean cotton works the best. The surface must be dry before using tack rags.