How to Wash a Car

December 19th, 2018 by

Blue car being washed

Sure, washing your car regularly helps keep it looking great, but that’s not all. When they’re done correctly, car washes protect the exterior paint and control imperfections you can’t see, such as tiny scratches. Winter Honda wants to help Antioch drivers keep their new Honda vehicles looking their best. That’s why we’ve put together to the following car washing guide. Learn how to wash a car below!

Plan Ahead

Does your car need a quick wash or the full package? Usually, new or recently waxed and polished cars need just a wash and wax. If your vehicle has been exposed to the elements for a few months without attention, it’ll likely need more.

Rinse & Wash

Before you start washing, rinse your car to remove loose dirt and debris. Use car washing mitts and drying cloths to clean your car’s surface more thoroughly. Once you’ve finished washing the car’s body, clean the windows with an ammonia-free solution that’s intended for use on cars only. Then, switch to a low-strength, acid-free pH balanced aluminum wheel cleaner and clean the wheels and tires.

Remove Bumps & Apply Compound

Using a clay bar, gently buff away tree sap and other contaminants attached to your car’s surface. You can also apply compound with a dual-action polisher to smooth tiny scratches beneath the surface. Compound usually needs 2-4 coats.

Apply Polish (If Needed)

Dual-action polishers work best. The oils in the polish will give your car a sleek, glossy look. You can use an orbital buffer or a soft towel to apply it. Orbital buffers are faster but give you less control over the finished look. Also, if debris comes between the pad and your car while it’s in motion, you can end up scratching your car.

Wax Your Car

Car wax does more than improve the appearance of your vehicle; it protects the paint from UV rays and helps it retain its sheen. Carnauba and polymer are the two most common types of car wax. Polymer wax costs a bit more than carnauba, however, it doesn’t haze and doesn’t need to set for long periods.

How Often to Wash a Car

How often you should wash your car depends on how you drive. Do you just run errands or are you more adventurous? If you’re traveling from Brentwood to Bay Point for work, for example, aim to wash your car every two weeks and wax it every six months. If you’re taking your Honda Ridgeline off the beaten path for off-roading adventures, clean it as soon as you can afterward.

How to Wash a Car: Tips

  • Cleaning Supplies: Instead of hand soap, dishwashing soap, or household glass cleaner, use solutions that are designed to protect your car’s paint. Use a natural sponge or wool mitt to wash.
  • Washing: Lather up your car with soap and clean the sponge with fresh water as you wash the car body, windows, tires, and wheels.
  • Drying: Don’t air-dry your car, as this can cause swirl marks. Use a chamois or terry towel to hand-dry the surface.

Get More Car Care Tips from Winter Honda!

Do you have additional questions about how to wash a car properly? Winter Honda in Pittsburg is happy to assist! In addition to great car-washing tips, our service department can provide certified auto care for your Honda. While you’re here, take a moment to browse our current service specials!

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