Traditional car washes with brushes trap particles that will scratch your paint. Hand washing your car is the best option for the ultimate long term health of the paint. However, you might not have the option to hand wash your car at home, and paying for this service is expensive. There is a solution: hand washing your car at a self service car wash facility.


Pros of Self Service Car Wash

There are many benefits to utilizing a self service wash, such as:

  • If you are very particular about how your car is washed, using a self service wash gives you control of your car’s care.
  • Hand washing your car yourself is very cost-effective compared to paying for your car to be hand washed.
  • The wait time for a self service wash is usually minimal.
  • Washing your car is a form of exercise.
  • If you want to wax or clay bar your car doing so in a garage is best. If you do not have a garage at home, using the garage wash bay of a self service facility is an ideal solution.
  • It is extra satisfying to see your car perfectly clean when you washed it by hand.


Cons of Self Service Car Wash

Self service washes are not perfect. Some of their drawbacks are:

  • Washing your car yourself is less convenient.
  • Self service washes are time-consuming; properly washing a car can take an hour or more.
  • Washing a car can be dirty work; you cannot wash a car yourself right before an event where you must arrive clean.
  • You may be charged by the minute for the time you utilize the wash bay.
  • If the self service wash provides supplies, they will be heavily used and could potentially damage your paint.
  • Unknown water quality; if the wash facility employees do not know if the water is filtered or unfiltered, you risk using hard unfiltered water which leaves water spots on the paint.


Tips For Using A Self Service Car Wash

To get the most for your money, consider these tips:


Give Yourself Time

Be sure to take your car to a self service wash when you have enough time to wash it carefully. If you are pressed for time, find a brushless car wash to rinse off your car and save the hand wash for another day.


Prep Your Car

Some self service washes charge customers by the amount of time they occupy the washing space. To keep this fee to a minimum, do everything that you can to prep your car for efficient washing, like emptying your car of trash at home.


Park Strategically

Nothing will throw off your rhythm like having to stop and readjust your car mid wash! Try to park at an angle that will allow you to reach all of your car with the hose and allow you sufficient room to freely move around your car.


Vacuum First

If your interior needs to be vacuumed, start with this task first. Shaking off floor matts and stirring up dust will undo all of your hard work.


Keep An Eye On The Sun

If possible, use a garage wash bay instead of washing your car outside in direct sunlight. If there is not garage wash bay available, be sure to utilize the car wash when shade is covering the area you will use.


Follow Instructions

Carefully follow all instructions on the supplies you choose to use. If you decide to wax or clay bar your car, following instructions becomes extra critical, as you can make the car look more filthy than it was pre-wash, or even damage your paint.


Bring Your Own Supplies

Consider purchasing a pack of disposable car washing towels. It is wise to have a fresh towel for each wash, as reusing an old towel has a similar effect to the brushes in a traditional car wash; you risk scratching your paint. Minimally, Always bring your own towels to wash and dry the car.


Water Matters

Be sure to use filtered water when you wash your car, as hard water has extra minerals which will leave spots on the paint.


Dry off intentionally

If you leave the car wash without properly drying the paint, you will leave unsightly water spots. Water spots are magnets for dust and debris, which would make the wash pointless. If you are charged by the time spent in the wash bay, consider moving the car to the closest parking lot to dry off the paint.


Tips For Finding a Self Service Car Wash Near Me

For a start, you could ask friends and neighbours for recommendations. Basically, it shouldn’t be too hard  to find them because self car washes are usually located in high traffic areas and most probably you have already noticed a few of them. The main question is to choose best one for you. Here you could need some recommendations of your friends and neighbours. 

Regarding searching internet, this is the nowadays power. A simple internet search on your computer or phone for “self car wash near me” should provide you with multiple options. You can also try searches that other car owners has tried: 

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If you really love your car, you know the importance of washing it properly. If you want to keep your paint in it’s prime for as long as possible, but also want to save money, do a quick internet search for “self car wash near me” next time your car needs cleaning.