The Simplest Way to Wash Your Car Right at Home

quickest car wash tips at home
Latest update date: February 24, 06

In this day and age, owning a car has become more popular than ever. According to data from the Vietnam Register, by the end of 2022, the country has more than 4 million cars in circulation. With the increasing number of vehicles, the need for vehicle care and maintenance also increases. In particular, car washing is an indispensable part to maintain the beauty and longevity of your car.

However, not everyone has the time and conditions to regularly take their car to professional car wash centers. That's why "washing your car at home" is becoming an increasingly popular trend in the car lover community. Not only does it help save significant costs, washing your car yourself also brings satisfaction and joy when taking care of your "four-wheeled friend" yourself.

This article will guide you How to wash your car at home in the simplest but most effective way. From preparing tools, choosing suitable car care products such as car wash, polishing wax, to the detailed step-by-step car washing process. We'll also share tips and techniques from experts in the car detailing industry, so you can achieve professional car wash results right at home. Let's explore the art of washing your car yourself, turning this seemingly boring job into a fun and exciting experience!

Why Should You Wash Your Car At Home?

Washing your car at home is not only a way to save money but also brings many other benefits. According to a survey by the Vietnam Automobile Association in 2022, 78% of car owners said they like to wash their cars at home for the following reasons:

  • Cost savings: On average, each car wash at professional centers can cost from 100.000 to 300.000 VND. Meanwhile, the cost of washing your car at home is only about 20.000 to 50.000 VND/time.
  • Quality control: You can ensure your vehicle gets the care you want.
  • Flexibility in time: No need to depend on the opening hours of car wash centers.

"Washing my car at home helps me save about 2 million VND per year and the car is always in clean condition" - Mr. Nguyen Van A, Toyota Vios owner shared.

Preparation & Steps to Wash Cars at Home

1. Prepare tools

Use special car wash soap! Dishwashing liquid or other household cleaners will lose shine or damage car paint. Plus, all you need is clean water, a spray nozzle, and a soft, clean cloth or brush. First, park your car in a shady place - ideally on gravel or grass so that water can seep into the soil, avoiding the risk of dirt getting back into the vehicle.

Direct sunlight will dry the car quickly, leaving soap residue or unwanted streaks on the vehicle's surface. Most car care professionals recommend using special car wash gloves or soft towels to reduce scratches on car paint. A separate soft bristle brush should be used to brush the wheels.

The easiest car wash tips at home
Prepare tools such as aerosols, soap, and towels

2. Wash from top to bottom 

The car should be washed from top to bottom and regularly cleaned with towels or brushes, to avoid moving dirt from one place to another, creating scratches on the car. The lower part of the car, especially behind the wheel cavities, is where the dirt accumulates. Therefore, washing from the top will reduce the risk of moving dirt from the lower parts to the entire body, causing scratches.

Spray the car carefully and carefully
Spray the vehicle carefully and thoroughly on the outside of the vehicle

3. Clean rims and tires 

One of the easiest ways to improve the look of your vehicle is to keep the rims and tires clean. As with the car body, it is important to use the correct wheel cleaner. Today, most wheel types are coated with protection or gloss, and this coating is very susceptible to damage if exposed to too strong detergent; some even require a special detergent or polish.

Make sure the wheels and brakes are cool before washing them. Cold water can damage a hot brake disc. Once the rim is clean, a specialized tire cleaner, followed by a tire polish, may be needed.

Clean rims and tires
Clean rims and tires

4. Use wax 

When using wax, it should be noted:

  • Wash and dry the vehicle before waxing.
  • The surface of the vehicle must be cool and free from direct sunlight. Outdoor temperature should be above 10oC, and humidity is low.
  • Use a sponge or ruffled cotton towel to rub the wax over small sections diagonally or in circular swirls.
  • Wait for the wax to dry, then wipe off the matte wax on the body with a microfiber towel. Wipe in all directions and turn towels often. Rinse the towel to let the wax stick to it fall off.
  • When finished, wipe the entire vehicle again, paying particular attention to corners, door edges, welds, where wax may remain. To make the car more shiny, spray wax can be used after washing the car. This product is very easy to use and only takes a few minutes.

5. Clean the inside of the car

Do not ignore the car interior! Make sure you vacuum under the seat and don't use products that make the dashboard or steering wheel shine, as this can cause light reflection, which is dangerous to drive.

Regarding the interior cleaning process, first vacuum all the upholstery, then the carpets. Then, vacuum under the chair. Experts recommend using a soft cloth and clean water to clean the dashboard and seats. A cotton swab will be very useful when cleaning small crevices, and a stiff-bristled brush will be used to remove dirt stuck to the floor carpet. To be more sophisticated, you can use specialized cleaning agents for each type of interior surface, such as leather, plastic, plastic, vinyl, wood, plywood...

Carry out cleaning inside the car's interior
Carry out cleaning inside the car's interior

Some Experience When Self-Washing A Car At Home 

1. Do not wash your car when it has just been used

When you have just returned from the car or the car is in hot weather, you should not wash it immediately. Because too sudden changes in temperature will cause parts of your car to easily crack, gradually causing your car to experience many unnecessary damage.

2. Do not use too strong a water hose to spray directly

Using water hose that is too strong to spray directly on the vehicle will affect the paint layer. Not only that, if some important parts such as the carburetor, the car are sprayed with strong water, the gasoline will be mixed with water and the engine will not explode.

3. Clean the engine compartment only

With the engine compartment, you should only carefully clean the parts if you do not know how to disassemble the parts. By the way, check the engine oil, brake fluid, coolant and clean the engine air filter. 

In case the engine compartment is too dirty, you should go to the car wash garage, the staff will disassemble each part and clean it thoroughly.

4. Be careful when choosing cleaning cloth

Should choose a soft cloth to clean the car. Or if you make use of old fabrics, old clothes, you need to cut out hard details such as buttons, zippers, stones, ... to avoid scratching the car. It is best to choose soft cotton or cotton fabrics.

5. Each type of towel is used for one part

Please use 1 separate towel for the bodywork, 1 separate towel for the wheel. Because if shared, dirt - dirt on the towel will make the paint coat easily scratch.

6. The vehicle should be started after cleaning

Starting the engine after washing the car will quickly dry the parts that are still standing water, reducing unnecessary rust. Therefore, you should start and run the car for a short while after washing the car.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1. How often should you wash your car at home?

Depending on usage conditions, the car should be washed at least every 2 weeks. For vehicles that are used frequently or in dusty environments, weekly washing may be necessary. According to the survey, 68% of car owners wash their cars 1-2 times a month to maintain beauty and protect the paint layer.

2. Is it necessary to use a high-pressure car washer when washing your car at home?

Optional. High pressure washers save water and time, but need to be used with caution. A minimum distance of 30cm from the nozzle to the vehicle surface should be maintained and the pressure should not exceed 1500 PSI to avoid damaging the paint or sensitive parts.

3. How to fix water remaining on the car after washing?

Use a high-quality microfiber towel to dry your car. An effective way is to use a specialized car dryer or leaf blower to dry the gaps. 92% of detailers recommend this method to avoid water stains.

4. Should you wash your car in direct sunlight?

Absolutely not. Direct sunlight causes water and soap to dry quickly, leaving streaks and residue. The ideal temperature for car washing is 15-25°C, humidity below 60%. Washing your car in the shade or garage will help increase cleaning efficiency by 30%.

5. How to clean the windshield without leaving streaks?

Use a specialized glass cleaning solution and a clean microfiber towel. Wipe in an S shape from top to bottom, then reverse. Change towels regularly. 87% of professional car washers use this technique to achieve maximum transparency.

6. Should you use hot water to wash your car?

Should not. Hot water can damage the protective wax layer and cause stress to the painted surface. The ideal water temperature is 20-25°C. According to research, using warm water (no more than 35°C) can increase cleaning effectiveness by 10% compared to cold water.

7. How to properly preserve car washing tools?

Preserve car washing tools by:

  • Wash and dry all tools after use
  • Store gloves, sponges, and microfiber towels separately
  • Hang tools with handles to prevent mold
  • Check and replace tools every 3-6 months
  • Proper storage can extend tool life by up to 50%.

8. Is it necessary to wash the undercarriage regularly?

Very necessary, especially during the rainy season or when traveling on muddy roads. You should wash the underbody of your car at least every 2 months. Washing the car's underbody regularly helps reduce the risk of rust by 70% and prolongs the car's life.

9. How to treat small scratches on the car after washing?

For light scratches, use a scratch removal pen or specialized polishing cream. For deeper scratches, touch-up paint can be used. 85% of small scratches can be significantly improved by these methods without the need for repainting.

10. Is it necessary to dry the car after washing?

Very necessary. Drying your car helps prevent water stains and protects paint and metal from corrosion. Use a microfiber towel or a specialized dryer. Proper drying procedures can reduce the risk of water stains on your vehicle by 90%.

11. How to protect car interior after cleaning?

After cleaning, use:

  • Leather protector for leather seats
  • UV protection agent for dashboards and plastic surfaces
  • Use probiotics deodorant spray to eliminate odors
  • Applying these protective measures can extend interior life by up to 5 years and maintain 80% of the vehicle's value.

Hope the above sharing will be useful. Wish you have the most enjoyable experience when cleaning your own car! Reference Automatic car wash service at Thanh Phong Auto.

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