Glass cleaning guide
Summary: An introduction into glass cleaning
The actual glass cleaner is rarely the problem if you have Issues, mostly it comes down to technique.
What towels to use:
For the cleaning stage many towels can be used, what works for you is fine. I have even seen abrasive bamboo towels or towels with carbon fiber in them for extra bite. For the wiping stage you want a streak free finish, so something like a drying towel is a great option. Do not use plush, that will streak. Waffle weave or Twisted pile are winners.
General technique for maintained cars:
I spray a horizontal line of glass cleaner down the middle of the glass and then use the first Towel to clean, then take off the residue with the second towel. Over useage of cleaner is one the biggest reasons for issues caused.
Method two (even more foolproof):
Use a MF applicator sponge, at best one without a barrier (so one of the cheaper ones) spray some glass cleaner in the applicator and apply it to the glass like you would a coating, at the same time clean the glass. do a crosshatch and take care of individual spots. Now take your towel and remove the glass cleaner. Done
More extreme cleaning, smokers cars:
Do a first clean with some glass safe APC, remove with a wet towel, then wipe dry and do your regular cleaning. A panel prep can also help!
I still get foggy Windows!
Use some panel prep in a last step, it removes the little residues where fog can build up. I will only be a fix for some time but it fixes it pretty good. Also please actually use the AC in your car, it does dehumidify the car, especially in the winter.
For waterspots use a glass safe waterspot remover. It does make sense to clay the glass every now and then to deep clean it.
There are two options with polishing glass, one is as a deep clean, for that you can use old pads and some polish or compound of choice and just do a crosshatch on the glass to really get it pore deep clean. This will likely not remove any defects.
The defect removing alternative needs specific pads and polishes and a rotary polisher, likely even a 3″ to maximize aggressiveness. I would not not recommend attempting this as it takes a lot of time and effort and has the chance to polish a fish eye lens into the glass. Replacement is often the better alternative.