Do Automatic Carwashes Hurt Auto Finishes?

Sun Auto Service Expert, published on 04/25/2016

When you’re trying to make sure your car looks its best, you want to choose washing methods that are easy, quick, inexpensive, and safe for your paint’s finish. For many people, convenience dictates a fast trip through an automatic carwash. These washing services are fun to watch as your car inches its way through high tech machines and water jets.

An automatic carwash is actually better for your car’s paint than a hand wash. These washing services typically use the preferred ratio of water and soap. With hand washing, car owners sometimes don’t use enough water and end up causing small abrasions to their finish. There are, however, some things to watch out for in order to get the best experience possible that keeps your car looking great.

Touch-Free Is Best

When you are selecting the carwash that is right for your automobile, be sure to choose a service that has no heavy-duty brushes as part of the system. Large, cumbersome brushes in a carwash machine are an older style that can cause issues with your vehicle’s paint. Newer carwashes are virtually touch-free. Instead of using heavy brushes, these ones use the force of the water and soap being pushed out through hoses and jets.

Careful With Wipe Downs

Some automatic carwashes have a step where the car is wiped down afterwards by hand. If your car wash provides this service, be sure to pay careful attention to the cloths that are being used. If the attendants are using the same cloths over and over again without refreshing them, that may cause a problem. Debris and dirt from other cars can collect on the cloths and be transferred back to your car. Depending on the situation, you may want to skip this part.

Think About Add-Ons

Lots of auto detailing and washing businesses offer additional services beyond the initial wash. Certain services such as an automatic application of wax may not be as effective for your particular make and model. Some add-ons that may be worth your time could be undercarriage washes and wheel and tire cleaning. These extras can clean the parts of your car that get the most action from the road.

If you’re looking for ways to make your car stay as beautiful as it was the day you bought it, regular visits to the automatic carwash may be a great solution. Carefully choose your level of service to get the best out of your visit for both you and your vehicle.