The Proper Way to Wash Your CarThere is a lot that goes into maintaining the look of your car, proper storage and cautious driving are part of it. Another important factor is ensuring that you are washing your car correctly. To keep that pristine condition, you must wash your car with the same care professionals do.  Don’t think that means you need to run out and buy a pressure washer, this detail oriented car wash isn’t very high tech, but the results are great.

A detailed washing requires a few tools of the trade. Be sure to pick up these supplies prior to washing your vehicle:

  • Car wash soap – Don’t make the mistake thinking that dish soap will be good enough. Dish soap is hard on rubber components and can strip your car’s wax coat.
  • A wash mitt – We recommend sheepskin or a microfiber cloth. These are ideal materials to avoid scratches.
  • 2 individual buckets – one for the soapy mix and one rinse bucket.
  • A hose with a spray nozzle long enough to reach around the entire vehicle
  • A drying cloth – An absorbent waffle-weave drying towel or a extra microfiber towel.

Step 1. Pre-treat trouble spots

Now that you have all your supplies handy, it’s ideal to choose a shady location to wash your car. This will stop the water from evaporating too quickly and leaving spots. Take a walk around your vehicle and identify any stubborn spots, such as sap, dead bugs or bird droppings. Treat these spots with undiluted car soap.

Step 2. Wash your Wheels

Next, inspect your wheels. If your hubcaps are very dirty, wash them before you wash the rest of the car. Give the wheels a preliminary rinse and then clean thoroughly with car wash soap and a detail brush or an old toothbrush. Rinse the wheels before continuing.

Step 3. Rinse Your Car

Now you’re ready to tackle the body of the vehicle. Lift your windshield wipers and begin spraying on the roof of your car. Work you way down the vehicle, paying special attention to your pre-soaked trouble areas.

Step 4. Scrub Gently

Once your car is thoroughly wet, dip your wash mitt in the soapy water and begin lightly scrubbing. We recommend starting at the top of the vehicle and working your way down. Be sure not to press too firmly and to always rinse your mitt before dipping back in the soapy water. When you rinse your mitt before sudsing up again,  you deposit the majority of the dirt in the rinse water, this prevents you from accidentally scratching your vehicle’s coat with dirt.

Step 5. Final Rinse

When you’re ready for your final rinse, be sure to remove the spray nozzle. This allows for a gentle stream of water to wash away the soap. Once again, start rinsing at the top of your car and work you way down. Remember, soap likes to collect in the crevices by the trunk and engine, as well as the tires. Rinse your vehicle thoroughly.

Step 6. Dry your Car

Finally, you want to dry your car with the waffle-weave drying towel or the microfiber towel. Finish with the microfiber towel to get all the hard to reach places. Don’t forget to dry around the seal of the doors and trunk. Now your car is completely clean and it looks like a pro has done the work.

If you noticed that the water wasn’t beading when you rinsed your car off, that’s a good sign your vehicle is in need of a new coat of wax.