4 Important Reasons to Wash Your Vehicle on a Regular Basis

Car owners understand that they need to wash their car regularly to keep it looking good. A good looking car does increase pride in ownership and helps the car’s resale value if the owner ever wants to sell it. But there are other reasons to wash the car on the regular. Here are four of them:

1. Dirt Hurts

Dirt not only makes the car look unattractive, but shortens its lifespan. Dirt gets into the paint and wears it down all by itself. When it is mixed with rain, road salts and pollution, dirt can simply strip the paint off the car. Paint not only gives the car its stunning color but protects it. When the paint has been etched off, the car’s body is at risk of attack by corrosion and rust. Rust can start to eat into the car’s chassis, and the cost to get rid of it is considerably higher than giving the car a wash every couple of weeks.

2. Washing a Car Increases its Fuel Efficiency

This is a fascinating fact. The tiny bits of grit that cling to a car causes drag. Drag is a force that acts in opposition to the car’s forward motion. In other words, it slows the car down. Because the car has to work harder to overcome the drag, its fuel efficiency is lessened. Studies have shown that a dirty car is 10 percent less fuel efficient than a clean car of the same make, model and year.

3. A Clean Car Keeps Passengers and Drivers Healthy

No one questions that keeping the inside of a house clean prevents pathogens from attacking the people who live there. The same is true for the inside of a car. Indeed, because a car travels from place to place and picks up bugs as it picks up people, it’s probably dirtier than any room in the house.

4. Cleanliness Encourages Safety

It is difficult to see out of a windshield or mirror that is obscured by grime, dead bugs and other detritus. The danger of driving a car is made worse when the driver can’t really see what’s ahead of and what’s behind them. Because of this, it’s essential that windshields and mirrors be kept clean and clear.

Washing the Car Properly

Washing the car is quick and easy, especially if it’s done regularly. However, there is a right way and a wrong way to do it.

• First, do not wipe the car with a dry cloth. That only causes the tiny particles of grit to scratch the paint. The result is that the finish will look cobwebbed when the sun hits it.

• Wash the car on a cool and overcast day. To wash a car in blazing sun can ruin the finish. If it’s summer and cool and overcast days are hard to come by, move the car into the shade.

• Use cold or lukewarm water delivered through the garden hose. Garden hoses are forceful enough to loosen dirt, dead bugs and other debris without hurting the finish.

• Use old, soft rags such as a towel that’s seen better days. A sponge or chamois cloth are also good to wash the car. Wash along the contours of the car instead of rubbing in circles to avoid scratches. Rinse the rag often to get rid of grit and grease.

• Use mild dishwashing liquid or a car washing solution. Some of these solutions come with a little wax mixed in.

• Wash the car from the top down, and remember to deal with all the nooks and crannies where dirt and rust can hide and accumulate. This includes inside the fenders and behind the wheels and the bumpers. Make sure to wash the undercarriage, because this area is the dirtiest of all.

• Wash one section of the car at a time. Add water, add soap, then rinse. When all the sections of the car are done, hose the entire car down until every bit of soap is gone then towel it off.

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