There is a science to washing a car. If you didn't know that, then keep reading on because we will share ten great tips for washing your own vehicles. Sometimes we think the money we pay for having our car cleaned is too much and would rather do it ourselves.
If your car hasn't been professionally washed for a long time you might not want to start doing it there. However, if you have a new car and feel like the car wash is going to scratch the glossy new paint then let's do it yourself.
10 What's Available For Use
Let's check you available resources first, shall we? Do you have buckets and washcloths, sponges and rags? Do you have a long enough hose so that you won't have to walk back and forth filling that bucket with water? See if you have a pressure machine or pressure washer lying in the garage or shed.
If you do, then learn how to set it up and use it, that should save lots of water, let's save the environment while we clean our cars too. Check out car waxes, car wash soaps, finishes and polish, tire shine, and other products for your car.
9 Where To Wash The Car
Firstly, you should never wash the car under the bright, hot sun. It would cook the soap and foam, making it harder for you to rinse it off, also you wouldn't want to work under the sun.
Secondly, the location depends on the materials you found. If you found a lengthy hose, then choose a shaded area to park the car. If you have pressurized water, then choose an area, like the front lawn, where it's okay to get the surroundings a little wet. Remember, it's going to be wet, so choose the spot wisely to avoid unwanted damage to your property, or the neighbor's.
8 What You Need And What You Should Never Use
This is crucial, especially if you're one of those lucky ducks with a brand new car. Never use old products that have been owned by dad or grandpa. Not having an expiration date doesn't mean it's good for the next hundred years. Pick out washcloths with fabrics that will not scratch the glossy and shiny surface of the new car.
Wash them thoroughly after using, the dirt left in them could scratch the car next time they're used if not cleaned properly. But if you're washing your old trusty jalopy then get those old t-shirts and clothing and let's re-use them. Cut up old jeans are best for cleaning the muddy parts of the car's belly.
7 Buckets And your New Best Friends
Out of all the materials you gathered, you will be using the buckets and sponges most of the time. They will be your new best friends when washing your own cars. Sponges foam up more than the regular washcloth and it absorbs more liquid so it's more efficient to use.
It can reach surfaces washcloths cannot. you can crush them and they will just go back to their original shape. You can use buckets to conserve water and also it will make your car-washing life easier. Have at least two buckets, one's the soapy bucket, the other one's water for quick rinsing.
6 What To Wash First, Second, Third.....
Now let's wash the car. Get the roof first, if it's a larger car, you might need something to elevate yourself. Do a water sweep first, then the soap. It's ideal to get the whole car all foamy and white, it just looks cool. The roof, then the hood, then get to one side of the car.
Work your way to the trunk then to the other side. Finish with the grill and then the wheels. Change washcloths (old jeans) when washing the really dirty parts, like the inside of the mudflaps and the inside arc around the wheels, then you'll get surgical in the next item.
5 Get Those Sneaky Spaces
The belly of the beast is the dirtiest part of the car. Do not use that microfiber washcloth for these parts. Use the old clothes for these, this is where the extra buckets come in handy. A separate bucket for the jean cloth and dirty soap, and one for the cleaner soap and washcloth.
Get those sneaky crevices in the trunk and the grill. Around the door handle and the space in the car where the door should be when it's opened. Get the mag wheels clean, the sponge works best here. Don't forget to get all surgical on the car's emblem of course.
4 Drying And Nitpicking
Now that you've done a full cleaning of the whole car, it's time to dry it. Drive it around the block once or twice and let nature take its course. Of course, it will dry naturally, gravity takes good care of us, you know. But let's help speed up the process.
In drying, you will also see some dirty spots you missed, so get those buckets ready again for a quick soap and rinse. Get those super-absorbent towels to dry the car faster. There are plenty of car drying towels available on Amazon, choose the best one, especially if you're that lucky duck, haha!
3 Waxing The Car
If you're planning to wax the car then you should do a fine job drying it first, but there are car waxes that work fine on wet surfaces so check your product. If this is your first time, you might want to take it easy and avoid buying the best car wax product.
Let's try it out first, let's get the reliable and cheaper one so that you won't regret it if something goes wrong and you can't use it anymore. Or if you decide altogether that washing your own car is too much, then it's okay if you shelf the cheaper car wax.
2 Finishing Touches
Now you're done waxing the whole car, but it feels incomplete. It doesn't look shiny new like the label said. Sometimes the car's paint job is just too old, or maybe you need to finish it off with another product. Yes, that's how it's done.
Once you're used to washing your own car and waxing it, then you can purchase other products to give your car that long-lasting shine. There are tire shines to blacken your wheels, polishes, and all-purpose liquid waxes that work well on windows and upholstery inside. Let's clean the inside of the car, too. Wipe dirt off the dashboard and the windows from inside.
1 Appreciate And Compare
Give yourself a pat on the back, you did it! Now take a minute and appreciate what you've done. Good job! Then, do a little math and add up all the things you bought for this new activity, then the time you spent doing it. Multiply it with the number of times you'd wash the car every year.
Then compare it to a year's worth of trips to the car wash plus the fuel consumption. If it's worth it, you have a new hobby. If not, then get a membership at your favorite car wash shop. But it's a great feeling knowing you can wash your own car, and that's priceless.