Frequently Asked Questions
Money-Saving Tips to Help Protect Your Car's Finish
Reasons to Use a Professional
Frequently Asked Questions
Money-Saving Tips to Help Protect Your Car's Finish
Q: I wash my car at home using a garden hose.
Lately, the finish looks
dull and marked. What could be wrong?
A: Washing your car at home is extremely harmful
to the finish since University of Texas proved that a single home
hand-wash can leave scratches in the finish as deep as 1/10 of the
paint's total thickness. Also, the average garden hose cannot supply
enough water and water pressure with the detergent action to avoid
damaging a car's finish.
This important study concluded that automobile owners should avoid
washing their cars at home. Only a professional car wash can provide
the proper amounts of water and water pressure needed with the appropriate
cleaning solutions to safely and effectively clean your car.
Q: What are the advantages of washing my car in a self-service
A: The self-service car wash is designed to allow you to
custom wash your car. Self-service units have everything you need
including proper water pressure that you cannot get from a garden
Q: How can I keep my whitewall tires looking like whitewalls?
A: Don't use scouring pads to clean whitewalls.
They deteriorate the whitewall surface. Your self-service car wash
in most cases provides whitewall cleaner and the proper wash pressure
to clean the tires.
Q: Does it really help a car's value to keep its finish looking
A: Yes! Appearance is the first thing that people look for
in a used car. If a car's finish turns buyers off, it's virtually
impossible to get a good price - no matter how well the car runs.
The car, which is noticeably rusted, dull and spotty, will sell
for significantly less than the same car with a showroom finish.
Proper care of the car's appearance will definitely pay off at trade-in
Q: Is it true that my new car shouldn't be washed or waxed
for a certain period of time?
A: This may have been true a long time ago, but with the
new modern acrylics and enamels, your new car's finish needs tender
Be careful to wash your car properly. Most new cars are treated
with a clear-coat finish. It's important that you exercise extreme
care - especially when washing your new car for the first few times.
Many initial washing errors result in water spots, setting stains
and loss of luster. Without the benefit of protective coating layers
that your car will receive over the years, mistakes made during
the first few washes may not be correctable.
Should you decide to wax your car, use a wax that's compatible with
your paint. Check your owner's manual and the wax's label for instructions.
The best advice is to trust your car's finish to a professional
from the beginning.
Q: How often should I have my car washed?
A: It depends. If your car is exposed to corrosive materials
like salt, sand and industrial fallout, it should be washed often.
The same goes for vehicles in areas with high humidity. Moisture
attracts contaminants and promotes a variety of chemical reactions
that can destroy your car's finish. Frequent washing is essential
to the life of your car's chrome and painted surfaces.
In seasons or climates less conducive to corrosion, a wash every
two weeks or so is adequate. In areas with acid rain, a wash every
ten days is advised. Of course, these estimates may vary depending
upon whether your car is kept in a garage or out in the elements.
Q: Periodically, I notice a layer of residue on my car's
finish. Is it from the atmosphere? Is it harmful?
A: What you are referring to are black particles that come
from areas of heavy traffic. They are gritty, abrasive substances
coming off tires as they wear. Also, chemicals from diesel smoke
and other emissions in the atmosphere settle on your car's surface.
If this residue isn't removed immediately, permanent damage to the
finish can result.
Q: Why does my car ride better after I've had my car washed?
Am I imagining it?
A: Not at all! Actually, it's very simple. Dirt and grime
collect in the areas around your car's wheels. The concentrated
spray at professional car washes loosens and rinses the grime, giving
you a smother ride. The spray also helps prevent rusting inside
the wheel wells - the most difficult type of rust to stop. In addition,
tests show that a properly cleaned and waxed car has less wind resistance
resulting in a smoother ride and improved fuel economy.
Q: When should I wash off insect residue?
A: As soon as possible, especially if the car is new. Insect
residue and bird droppings form acids that immediately start to
eat away a car's finish.
Q: What is the major cause of rust?
A: Rust is simply the oxidation of untreated metal surfaces
when they contact the elements. Moisture is the main cause of rust.
Since dirt attracts and traps moisture, a dirty car is the instigator
of almost all car rust, especially in those hidden areas behind
the chrome and trim. Only a professional car wash operator has the
equipment and know-how to effectively reach all those hard-to-reach
places and remove corrosion-producing grime before damage is done.
Q: What can I do to remove the tar that occasionally gets
on my car?
A: Tar and certain oils used on roads require extremely strong
solvents to remove. Naturally, we cannot use these solvents when
we wash your car since just a few washes with such strong chemicals
could harm your car's finish. There are many excellent tar solvents
on the market and we would be happy to recommend one to you. A word
of caution - follow directions carefully and wash your car as soon
as possible after using such a solvent.
Q: Lately, my windshield smears when I run my wipers. What
am I doing wrong?
A: Perhaps you haven't changed your wiper blades recently.
Most manufacturers recommend installing new blades every three months.
This will prevent wearing and smearing, which impairs your vision
Isn't rain a natural, cost-effective car wash?
A: No! Rain and snow contain acid that eats away at the paint
and finish of vehicles. After acid rain falls on a car, the water
evaporates, but the acid remains. Concentrated by sunlight, this
acid can become so strong that it will eat through the finish, ruining
the vehicle's paint and appearance.
Q: If my car has a high-gloss "clear coat" finish,
do I still need to wax it?
A: Yes! Most new cars have a high-gloss clear coat finish,
which is easily damaged from acid rain. The sun's ultraviolet (UV)
rays, salt, and road wear and tear also damage cars. Wax is an effective
and efficient way to shine and protect a car's finish. Wax your
car every six months. More frequent waxes are needed if your car
is red, black or white because these colors are more susceptible
to acid rain and UV rays.
Q: Aren't hand washings safer for my car and the environment?
A: No! Dirt that collects in wash water, sponges and chamois
will scratch the paint. Hand washings use nearly twice the amount
of water than professional car washes. Cleaning solutions professional
washes use are biodegradable and safe for the environment. Also,
high-pressure water at self-serve and professional washes cleans
cars better and faster.
Q: What kind of car wash will do a good job of cleaning
A: Any professional car wash - full-serve or self-serve -
can effectively clean your car without damaging it. There are several
kinds of professional car washes using variations of touchless,
semi-touchless, cloth or brush methods of cleaning. In any case,
high-pressure water and detergents are used to remove dirt and other
potentially damaging particles from your car's finish, wheel wells
and undercarriage. A final fresh water rinse leaves cars spot-free.
Blowers or towel-drying remove excess water from the car.
Q: What if I don't have the time or money to wash and wax
my car regularly?
A: You can't afford not to protect your investment! A professional
car wash offers safe, fast, high-quality washes at affordable prices.
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Reasons to Use a Professional Car Wash
face it. Most of us have a car or truck that we enjoy driving and
perhaps our proudest moment is when the car is new and looks its
best. For this reason, car washes have acquired popularity and have
been able to provide us with that "new car feeling" that
we all love.
A lot of people wash their own cars at home, but the convenience
of an automated car wash and relatively low cost has become hard
to beat. Our cars are subjected to all sorts of abuses from the
environment including the sun, dirt, and smog, all of which will
affect the best automobile. However, you can keep your car in new
condition and the following information will show you how.
1. Feel Good - Washing your car is like brushing your teeth
or taking a shower - you just feel better afterward.
2. Save Time - Do the things you'd rather do and still
do the things you should do.
3. Protect the Environment - Professional car washes use
and specially designed equipment to conserve water. The contaminants
off and channeled through sanitation sewers to water treatment plants.
washing wastes water, and the soap and dirt end up in storm sewers,
which flow into
our lakes, streams, and rivers-polluting our environment.
4. Protect Your Investment - A good finish on your vehicle
means a higher resale or trade-in value.
5. Take Pride in Ownership - Your car looks better clean
rather than dirty.
And if you don't care for it, who will?
6. Preventative Maintenance - All vehicles, regardless of
the finish (clear coat,
acrylic, enamel, etc.) require regular washing throughout the year,
just like a
good maintenance program prolongs the life and performance of your
7. The Clock is Ticking - Time is a contributing factor
that can harm your car's exterior. The longer an attacking substance
is on the vehicle, the greater the probability and extent of damage.
8. Acid Rain - Emissions from chemical plants, fossil fuels,
power plants and the internal combustion engine are transported
and altered in our atmosphere. When
deposited onto your car's surface in either a wet or dry state,
sulfuric or nitric acids which, if left on the surface, can eat
9. Heat Damages - Temperature accelerates problems. The
acids in bugs, bird droppings,
tree sap, and leaves become more active through heat. Metal retains
this heat and
increases the chances of permanent stains.
10. Sun Burns - Sunlight exposure, with its ultraviolet
rays, accelerates the aging process and diminishes the gloss on
your finish. Protective coating and sealants are necessary to provide
a protective barrier while enhancing your exterior's gloss and shine.
11. Moisture Destroys - Water can trap dirt to a metal surface,
allowing the oxidation process to occur. It ultimately causes rust
12. Unhealthy Salt - Sea and road salt cause a chemical
reaction that can
accelerate the pitting and rusting of your car's surface. The undercarriage
is especially prone to this damage due to many out-of-sight areas
salt can lodge.
13. Clean Wheels - Road grime and brake dust cling to wheels
If not removed, they can actually permeate the metal, causing major
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