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Common Car Washing Mistakes

The purpose of this article is to give you tips on how to avoid the most Common Car Washing mistakes. So before you reach for the dishwashing liquid, read on.

Detailing your car at home is now easier than ever. From waxes to washes, today’s detailing products have been formulated so that you can avoid the pain of paint-scratching errors with ease!

All it takes are some patience and care to achieve amazing results. And yet while washing the car sounds simple enough, small mistakes can in some cases lead to costly damage. Here’s how to get the best results without disappointment.

1. Do not use dishwashing liquid or other detergents

While this seems to be obvious, so many people make the mistake of simply grabbing a bucket and the dishwashing liquid from the kitchen cupboard. Dishwashing detergent is made to dissolve heavy-duty oils and greases from your dishes and pans. When you use it on your car it strips away finishes and waxes previously applied to your paint surface. As a result, it leads to oxidization and a dull finish on your paintwork.

We recommend you use a pH-neutral car shampoo which is made specifically for car washing. Try Autosmart Smartwash which is a powerful car shampoo effective in removing road grime without removing stripping the surface.

2. Avoid washing in direct sunlight

It’s a hot summer’s day and you’ve found the time to wash the car. Avoid the temptation of washing in direct sunlight. As the car heats up under the sun, the shampoo residue will dry before you rinse it off. Find a shady spot so you can rinse suds off thoroughly before they dry.

Professional tip – Always wash car in the shade and never use liquid detergent from the kitchen

3. Clean tyres and wheel rims first

Clean your tyres and wheel rims first and always use different cleaning cloths or sponges to do. Tyres and wheel rims are likely to be covered in brake fallout. You do not want to transfer this onto the sponge being used to clean your car as it can lead to scratching. For cleaning your tyres we recommend you read our expert article on Tyre and Wheel Cleaning

4. Don’t use the same bucket

You should use two buckets. One for rinsing your sponge or wash mitt, and then the other for your shampoo. This method helps clean off the mitt or sponge before you soak it again into a fresh shampoo bucket.

5. Hose off excess dirt before you use the sponge

Among the Common Car Washing mistakes, people give the car a light hose and then start with the sponge straight away. Hosing the car lightly and then taking the sponge to wash off dirt can lead to dirt being captured by the sponge. This in turn causes your sponge to become filled with abrasives that can cause scratching. It is vitally important to hose off dirt before commencing to sponge the car with shampoo.

6. Avoid using a bath towel to dry the car

Professionals in the industry use either a drying towel designed to be ultra soft on paintwork or a perforated chamois. Both offer superior softness as well as absorbency to dry the car effectively.

Avoiding these Common Car Washing Mistakes can protect your paint finish and prevent unnecessary damage.