It’s one of life’s major decisions: to car wash or not to car wash. There’s no question whether your car needs it. But what about these rumors that some of the automatic car wash systems can damage your car? The question we at Hassett Automotive often hear is, is a car wash worth it?
First of all, no brushes! Though it’s not all that common, some car washes use brushes. This can leave small scratches on the first layer, called the clear-coat, of a car’s finish. Your best bet is to find a “touchless” car wash which only uses high-powered jets.
Be wary of the post-wash wipe-down. On a busy day, the towel team may be less likely to use fresh towels to dry-off your vehicle. Cleaning your car with a dirty rag after you just paid $10 for a wash is absurd. If you notice this, quickly speed away without making eye contact. An air-dry isn’t going to hurt things.
The wipe-down may also be a good time to inspect the wash. If you hear or see anything during the washing process that seems like it could have damaged your car, don’t be afraid to get out afterward and inspect. You’ll be able to resolve things much easier before you leave then if you have to come back later.
Though nothing fills a car owner with pride more than slowly and deliberately hand-washing his or her car, who’s got the time? Commercial car washes are a reasonable alternative…as long as you keep your wits about you.