Car Wash FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

A vehicle is a big investment, and keeping it clean helps that investment last longer. But maintaining that “clean” isn’t easy when it comes to our cars, trucks and vans. There are bugs in the summer and sleet and snow in the winter, and every other type of grime that easily collects on our cars. It’s easy to fall behind and neglect your vehicle. We want to help make car washing easier, so here are some answers to car wash frequently asked questions.

Car Wash FAQs

What’s the best way to wash my car?

We’re all busy, and keeping your car clean takes time. An automatic drive-through car wash is both easy and convenient, allowing you to wash your car more regularly. There are also options like hand washing and detailing in your driveway. But the top way to keep your car in the best shape possible is through professional hand washing.

When and how often does my car need to be washed?

There are different factors that determine how often you should wash your car. If road conditions are making your car dirty on a regular basis, you may need to wash more often. Generally, a wash at least every second week is a good guideline to follow. But dirt, debris, bugs, salt, calcium chloride and more can damage your car with chips, scratches, and rust. So to protect your investment and keep your paint from dulling, it’s important to keep your car clean.

Does an automatic car wash damage alloy wheels?

No, an automatic car wash is not detrimental to alloy wheels, as long as the wash doesn’t use certain tire brushes that can scratch them, or acids that can cause stains. Just to be on the safe side, ask in advance about your alloy wheels. Otherwise, a car wash is just fine for cleaning aluminum rims.

Will an automatic car wash damage my antenna?

Different cars have different types of antenna, so it depends on your vehicle. Many new vehicles don’t have an external antenna. There are older vehicles that do have an external antenna; the flexible kind can handle an automatic wash, but a hollow, telescoping antenna needs to be lowered or risk damage in the wash.

Do I need to worry about other accessories on my vehicle?

Once again, it depends. If you have an after-market product like a bug shield on your car, it is most likely fine to handle an automatic car wash. But that isn’t a guarantee. Some after-market accessories could still suffer damage, especially if they are already cracked or chipped. Other products like a trailer hitch can certainly withstand the wash, but might get in the way of washing equipment and impact how clean the vehicle gets. Anything that’s loose may get damaged or fall off in a wash.

Can you explain the difference between a touchless wash and a soft-cloth wash?

There are different kinds of technology used in automatic car washes. There are pros and cons about each kind, and fans of each type as well. A touchless wash relies on high-pressure blasts of water and stronger chemicals to clean and obviously doesn’t contact your car at all. A soft-cloth wash uses spinning cloth bristles and gentle friction to clean your car, removing dirt and debris better than the old abrasive brushes that used to scratch the paint. Those who prefer the soft-cloth kind claim that touchless washes are not as effective, but if the technology is well maintained, they both can do a good job of cleaning your car.

What are the benefits of hand drying my vehicle?

It’s simple. If you don’t hand dry your car, there is residue left behind. Even the water you leave when you air-dry your car contains minerals that don’t completely evaporate. That liquid residue becomes streaks, spots and deposits that you won’t appreciate looking at. One glance at a dark-coloured car in the sunlight will show the imperfections left behind when you air-dry your vehicles. In the winter it’s even worse, as the water will freeze in door jambs and windows.

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