Not properly washing your car can lead to vehicle damage!

2013 Land Rover Defender

Buying a vehicle is an investment. It would be a tragedy if you wasted that investment by damaging your vehicle with improper washing techniques! Here are a few guidelines to help you properly clean your vehicle:

Use cleaners made for auto

Dish-washing liquid is meant to remove any debris on a surface. Therefore, dish-washing liquid will remove the finishing of your car. It may also have mild abrasives that scratch the paint. Always use a cleaner specifically designed to clean your car and keep your finish intact.

Don’t wash car in direct sunlight as it will ruin the finish.  

Aim to wash your car in the shade, just after dawn or as the sun is setting. Drops of water serve as magnifying glasses which magnify sunrays and burn spots into the paint. Getting out of direct sunlight will not only help reduce any sun damage, but also keep you cool and out of the heat if you decide to hand-dry!

Keep the undercarriage clean

It is important to keep the undercarriage of the car clean. The undercarriage comes into contact with dirt as you drive. During winter, salt and sand mixture is spread on the roads to lower the freezing point of ice, hence melt the ice.

The sand helps keep the salt in place and adds some traction. This road salting may result in body and undercarriage corrosion if vehicle is not cleaned properly. Cleaning the undercarriage will also prevent rust from forming due to dirt and salt buildup. Finding an automated car wash that has the appropriate car wash equipment to clean the underside of your vehicle is a great way to reach those difficult spots.

Wash your car regularly

Aim to wash your car, at the very minimum, twice a month to prevent dirt, dust, tree sap, and bird droppings from etching and bonding into the paint. These materials do more damage the longer they stay on your vehicle, so more frequent washing means less potential damage! Here are some tips for some of the more common types of debris that come in contact with your vehicle:

  • Tree Sap

Sometimes tree sap can fall on your car. Tree sap is sticky and should be removed as soon as possible as it will etch through the coating and stain your car. The best way to remove the sap is by using remover solution and then waxing the spot.

  • Bird droppings

Bird droppings greatly damage a car due to its high acidity. Do not try to rub the droppings with a cloth as this will ruin the coating. Remove the droppings using remover and wax the spot.

  • Road rubber

As you drive, tire rubber, grease and oils from other vehicles etch onto your car. Washing your car with soap does not wash of these contaminants. Use commercial tar removers to get rid of these particles.

Pros of automated car washing over hand washing.

  • Hand washing is time-consuming lasting for an hour or two whereas automated washing takes less than twenty minutes.
  • Hand washing is labor intensive while automated washing requires less labor.
  • Rugs and sponges used when hand cleaning the car may contain tiny debris in the pores. This debris will create a pattern of scratches on the paint of your car. Automated washing is smooth and retains the lustre of the car
  • Automated car washing cleans hard to reach areas such as wheels, undercarriages, door seals and wheel covers. It is especially important to thoroughly clean the undercarriage, to prevent corrosion and rusting
  • As hand drying cannot dry the vehicle fast enough, watermarks are left on the car windows. Automated car washing dries the car fast since it uses a strong jet of heated air.  Automated washing also dries hard to reach areas such as door edges, underside of door handles, hinges and trunk edges.
  • Automated car washing can be done at any time of the day as well as late in the night.
  • Water usage from automated car washes is actually lower than what would be used at home. The runoff from the vehicle, which includes soap and chemicals, is properly treated and recycled, where at home it would hit your sewer system.

Therefore, switch to the more effective automated car washing, to ensure quality service for your customers.

This article was submitted by Ryko Solutions. They are the largest provider of managed car wash systems in North America, offering integrated end-to-end clean vehicle solutions including car wash equipment, cleaning solutions, a nationwide technical services organization and consumer marketing programs.


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