Washing your car using any method – even by hand – is risky. The chemicals in cleaning solutions are harsh and abrasive. There is always a chance the solution could scratch the paint finish or leave permanent swirls behind. 

Fortunately, by educating yourself on the methods available choosing the gentlest, you can minimize the damage. The durable topcoat in the majority of modern car finishes also helps; when cared for properly, it has an average lifespan of 10 years. Keep reading to learn how to protect your car’s finish from car washes by getting it clean with the most favorable method. 


Modern car wash methods claim to be easier on the finish. But the traditional car washes with rotating bristle brushes that you drive through have a major advantage over their modern iterations. The soft cloth scrubbers used in the latter hold onto abrasives to a greater extent than the former. 

A Soft Touch

It can seem when your car is massaged clean with soft pieces of cloth that a soft-cloth car wash is the best option for your car’s finish. However, the latent abrasives these scrubbers retain are extremely hard on the finish. 

Using Elbow Grease

While washing your clothes by hand is a great way to retain their quality, washing your car by hand will not necessarily do the same for the finish. As mentioned before, there are still abrasive chemicals in the cleaning solution. This is especially problematic if you use the same sponge for your entire vehicle. A sponge that is safe for the wheels and tires will transfer abrasives to the finish. 

Baby Your Car

Employing the following tips when you use an automatic car wash or wash it by hand will help preserve your car’s finish:

  • Use separate sponges to clean the wheels/tires and the painted surfaces of your car. 
  • Clean microfiber towels and sponges after every car wash.
  • Never follow a dirt and grime encrusted vehicle into an automatic car wash. Self-cleaning car wash technology requires at least a few rinse cycles to thoroughly eliminate harmful grit from the clothes or brushes. 


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Safeguard Your Car And Your Family

A well-maintained finish makes all of the difference in the appearance of your car. In addition to protecting your car’s finish from car washes, it is critical to protect your vehicle and your family in the event of a car wreck. Obtaining a car insurance policy that provides all of the coverage you need is the only way to do this. 

Think about it. It doesn’t make sense to spend all that time, money & energy babying and properly maintaining your car just to go cheap & get lazy on the most important part which is properly insuring & covering it.

As an independent agency, Compass Insurance through its Compass Insurance Agency site is able to offer quotes from 16 different carriers – giving you more options to choose from and ensuring you get the best coverage for your situation at the best price. We are able to prioritize our clients over our carriers because we are not obligated to any carrier over the other. Simply put, we work for you, not the insurance company.

Do you have questions about car insurance requirements in your state? We have answers! We leverage our car insurance expertise in states such as Wisconsin, Illinois, Arizona, Indiana, Ohio and Georgia to make sure you get the right coverage for your needs and budget.

The carriers we work with include:

  • Progressive Insurance
  • Citizens Insurance
  • Nationwide Insurance
  • Travelers Insurance
  • AAA Insurance
  • Safeco Insurance
  • Grange Insurance
  • Liberty Mutual Insurance
  • And More

Rest assured that your car is protected from the harsh effects of car washes and your family is protected from the fallout from car wrecks. Take the first step and get an auto insurance quote today.