How to Wash Your Car

After a repair, one of the first things we are asked is “Can I wash my car?” The answer is yes, but…..

There are some precautions you should take in the first 30 days after your vehicle has been painted. Most are commonsense, but we outline them here so you are aware of how important it is not to dismiss your first instincts. These are the Do’s and Don’ts




  • Always wash your vehicle in the shade
  • Before you add any cleaners, rinse thoroughly with cold fresh water
  • Use a clean bucket filled with cool fresh water
  • Use a very mild car wash solution available at many retailers
  • Hand wash with a soft clean sponge or microfiber cloth
  • Wipe with a clean chamois or terrycloth and allow your car to air dry
  • DO NOT go to an automated car wash
  • NEVER use high pressure sprayers
  • DON’T use hot water, OR a dirty bucket
  • DO NOT use dishwashing liquids, laundry detergents or dish soaps
  • Stay away from stiff brushes
  • DO NOT allow the soap to dry
  • Avoid gas, oil, other fluids coming in contact with the new finish; do not use dirty rags

There are numerous products available at auto parts stores and big box retailers to make maintaining your vehicle easy. Even after 30 days, the paint may still be prone to scratching as hardening of the paint surface takes time. Temperature, humidity, and climate conditions all impact the hardening process. Before you get started with general maintenance we suggest you do a little homework. There are a myriad of products that help preserve the beauty of your vehicle. From waxes to tire cleaners these product help showcase the finish and details of your vehicle.

Many of these products are well-known among car enthusiasts but for those not shopping the auto parts stores or automotive sections for your favorite retailers, you need to understand what each can do to preserve the appearance of your vehicle.

To begin select a body wax or polish that will protect your finish from general exposure to sunlight, UV rays, pollen, dirt and grime. Between washes use a detailing spray to keep your vehicle looking like new. Always buy high quality products (even though they may cost more) because they will leave your vehicle clean, scratch-free and beautiful. These items are labeled to provide you with information about use and performance. Remember your vehicle is one of the biggest investments you will make; keeping it as clean as possible helps maintain its value when you trade it in or lease a new vehicle.

Don’t forget about the cleaners for the other areas of your vehicle – bug removers, glass cleaners, wheel and tire cleaners, upholstery, and more. Take the time to learn about these products from an expert in the auto parts store or aisle of your favorite retailer.

We recognize that in the real world, you may not always be able to take these steps because you’re living your lives. As a last resort, if you really need to clean the dirt, mud, salt, sand from your vehicle, use a drive in touchless car wash. A touchless car wash is also a good way to remove salt from your undercarriage during the winter months.