Ever heard "Will you do my one next?" when washing your car?
I am surely not the only one that hears that almost every weekend when I wash our cars in our driveway. Last time, a friendly car enthusiast in my street asked why he should spend money on a snow foam gun if he can use the one that came with the power washer?
You might wonder if this is a fair review given the cost difference. I think yes, because it shows that a minor investment brings a lot of benefits without breaking the bank.
Snow foam guns, or sometimes called snow foam cannons, have been around for some time in the car wash and car detailing world but mostly used by professionals in the car valeting world.
While some car enthusiasts have been using snow foam as part of their regular and maintenance washes, Autoglym has released their Autoglym Polar Blaster snow foam gun only in February 2020 to complement their full Polar Range comprising of Polar Blast, Polar Wash and Polar Seal.
But first things first; some numbers.
Autoglym Polar Blaster
Kärcher Foam Spray Nozzle
Size inc. bottle
Brass, stainless steel and plastic
*Price accurate at the time of writing this blog post
With the range of products available to the everyday consumer improving constantly, the margin between professional cleaning and DIY cleaning grows smaller.
So, what's so special about snow foam?
Covering the car in a blanket of white, thick foam helps at loosening dirt and removing contaminates grime. The dripping foam resembles that of melting ice cream - its delightful. For some people, washing their own cars, boats, vans or trucks, is a way of saving money but for car fanatics, it can be therapeutic and satisfying to do it yourself.
The 2 snow foam guns
First the Kärcher Foam Spray Nozzle
Right from the start, the differences are clearly visible. Not only the size but also the weight and materials used.
While the Kärcher Foam Spray Nozzle is made completely out of plastic, the bottle holds about 0.6L which is just about right for any of the Polar Series products.
The smaller bottle diameter also results that the pressure washer lance will fall over when placed on the ground.
The Polar Blaster is constructed to withstand frequent use, its solid brass internal is encased in thick and durable plastic. Thanks to the brass, there is little chance of chemical erosion. While the Polar Blaster is almost 4 times heavier, it's still very handy and can be used without getting tiring. The lance will support any manoeuvre and will provide a thick layer of foam no matter what angle the lance is being held.
The bottle will hold 0.7L, same as a wine bottle, which is the perfect size for the Autoglym Polar range if used by the recommended dilution stated on the containers.
The bottle itself also has a very wide opening, allowing the detergents being poured into the bottle with ease and not risking to spill. The next positive is the bottom size of the bottle, providing a sturdy stand and reduces the risk of the lance to fall over when placed on the ground.
How to use a snow foam gun
Both work in the same way as a regular pressure washer attachment and combine pressurised water with the snow foam detergent - This creates that wondering white blanket effect.
If you want to change the thickness of the snow foam that comes out, all you have to do is twist the cap on the top of the snow foam cannon. This changes the product to water ratio, allowing for a thicker and thinner spray depending on your preference.
Well, see for yourself
This is a time-lapse video recording for 10 minutes using Polar Blast Snow Foam with the Kärcher on the left and the Autoglym Polar Blaster on the right.
Both bottles were filled with 100ml of Polar Blast Snow Foam and 500ml Water and the dial set to "maximum foam".
The Polar Blaster provides much thicker foam that sticks to the car much better and will dirt and decontamination much better.
Here a few photographs showing the 10 minutes.
Both products have lifted dirt, but the Polar Blaster applied side (right) was able to lift off dirt much better. When rinsed off the paintwork and piano black trim on this Audi Q3 had almost no dirt left, reducing the risk of scratching the car with a wash mitt when applying the Polar Wash Shampoo in the next stage.
Both products produce foam, but that's where the similarities end.
Polar Blaster wins this comparison not only thanks to the used materials and, thanks to the brass, there is little chance of chemical erosion over time, resulting in that that you will only ever need to buy one! The Polar Blaster can be used with any other pre-wash, shampoo or sealant products.
Having a snow foam gun that is specifically designed for a certain product range is going to produce much better results when washing cars as part of a regular maintenance wash or car detailing process. The swivel attachment is especially handy so you can use the snow foam gun at any angle and still draw product.
Polar Blaster creates lashings of thick, clingy foam with Polar Blast pre-wash, optimises the density required to efficiently deep clean with Polar Wash Shampoo and produces the perfect consistency to apply the hyper-hydrophobic Polar Seal in seconds.
The adjustable spray pattern allows you to easily follow your car’s contours, ensuring total coverage and appropriate dwell time on mud, traffic film and other contaminants. Complete a full exterior car care routine in a way that is quick, fun and safest to your car’s surfaces.
The Polar Blaster will fit a variety of power washers due to the available adapters for Nilfisk, Alto, Kew, Black & Decker, Lavor or Kranzle. You can find the needed adapter here.
With all those benefits, the Autoglym Polar Blaster is the clear winner and probably the best snow foam gun out there for the price and convenience.