Lets examine the most common two ways you ruin your cars paint without realiziing it.

Car enthusiasts know the quality of a cars paint job is the difference between a car looking brand new or being mistaken prematurely for a clunker.

It’s kind of ironic how drivers who pamper their cars are careful to park in the nose-bleeds section of parking lots overlook some of the most blatant threats to their finish:

1. Using an automatic touch car wash

This is probably the most obvious one. While you may think you’re in the clear if you don’t notice a scratch on your car after using the gas station car wash, chances are you just added a fresh coat of swirl marks on your paint. In an automatic “touch” car wash, the brushes used to scrub your car are seldom cleaned. If the SUV that went in before you just got done driving across a sandy beach, you can bet there’s some grit left over in the

The only type of touch car wash you’d ever want to consider using is one that uses synthetic brushes that by nature are resistant to holding dirt and particles. Even with this type of wash, if the workers at the end dry your car by hand then the point is moot. Having your car dried with a dirty towel is as bad as using a non-synthetic touch car wash

avoid the touch car washes. After all, touchless washes are the future and there’s no way your car can get scratched if nothing touches it right?


2. Using a self serve or touchless wash

Contrary to popular belief, using a self serve or touchless wash (basically the same thing, just ones automated) can still scratch your car. If your car is exceptionally dirty, the high pressure water can actually skid ice and other debris across your paint causing dreaded swirl marks. Even if your car goes in relatively clean it isn’t safe. Many of these car washes actually use recycled water  which doesn’t effectively remove all contaminants What does this mean? To save a few bucks on the overpriced wash you bought, the car wash is sandblasting your car when you wash it. Touchless car washes also use higher concentrations of soap which can strip your cars wax off more quickly.

Adding insult to injury, touchless washes don’t even remove all the dirt off your car. The best these types of washes can do is remove big clumps of dirt (to be broken down and recycled against your car as projectiles later) and leave a hazy film on the paint.