Washing your car with a bucket and sponge is an age-old tradition many of us have been doing since we first got behind the wheel. However, it’s important to remember that this seemingly simple task is one of the car wash mistakes that can actually harm your vehicle. Every time you rub that sponge across your car’s surface, you unintentionally create small scratches and marks, which can quickly become an unsightly mess.

According to a study by the University of Texas at Arlington, a DIY hand wash can cause scratches that penetrate up to 1/10 of the paint’s thickness, leading to a significant decrease in surface reflectance and shine readings.

Studies have shown that similar damage can be done to an automobile when using materials such as detergent, low water volume, buckets of water, sponges, and towels used in the average home car washing. By contrast, when using professional full-service car washes, there is virtually no change in the surface reflectance or shine readings.

Other Common Car Wash Mistakes

Using harsh materials, such as a sponge, to scrub their car is just one of several car wash mistakes that people make. Let’s take a closer look at some of the other mistakes that can harm your vehicle’s exterior.

Using the Wrong Chemicals: Using dish soaps and household chemicals to wash a car can have detrimental effects on the vehicle’s exterior. These harsh substances can oxidize the paint job, strip the clear coat, and leave the paint looking dull and lifeless. Moreover, such products leave the paint, rubber, and metal surfaces vulnerable to polluted muck, leading to further damage. 

At Sgt. Clean Car Wash, our team of professionals understands the importance of using high-quality car wash products that are gentle on your car’s paint yet effective in removing stubborn grime. Our eco-friendly products are designed to protect your car’s exterior while leaving it looking clean and shiny.

Using the Wrong Tools: Microfiber towels, microfiber glass towels, special cleaning tools for rims, and detailing brushes are just a few of the items needed to effectively clean a car without causing damage. For intricate spots, a detailing toolkit can come in handy. However, if you don’t have the time or tools to wash your car yourself, a reputable professional car wash like Sgt. Clean can take care of it for you. Our state-of-the-art equipment ensures your car is not only clean but also protected from scratches and damage.

Improper Drying: One of the biggest car wash mistakes people make is drying their cars the wrong way. It’s essential to avoid rough dry rubbing, which can lead to paint scratches. On the other hand, air drying your car may leave behind unsightly water spots and streaks. The best way to dry your car is by using a microfiber towel, but for a more foolproof method, you can opt for a professional car wash that uses high-powered dryers to speed up the evaporation process.

For a high-quality car wash that ensures the protection of your vehicle and avoids common car washing mistakes, visit us at Sgt. Clean.