Car wash question....

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by brady, Apr 26, 2018.

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  1. brady

    brady Member

    Has anyone used an automatic drive through carwash on a frequent basis over the long term? We have one here called zips and it seems to do a good job. I was talking to a buddy with a 2007 Tahoe that still looks BRAND NEW and he uses it a couple times a month for the last 10 years. Never hand washed his auto one time he says.

    Anyone have any issues with paint problems due to these car washes? Frankly, Im sick to death of hand washing and want my "couple of saturday mornings a month" back. I just don't think it makes a difference on factory Honda paint job.
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  3. Kendalf

    Kendalf Active Member

    Is the zips Auto wash a "touchless" system, or does it have spinning brushes that go against the car? Also depends on the color of the car. Eg darker colors tend to show more readily the micro-scratches from these spinning brushes (but also from hand washing when grit is trapped under the wash mitt).
  4. Viking79

    Viking79 Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I used to wash by hand all the time as a fun thing to do. I don't do that any more, so my wife takes the Clarity to a touch/brush car wash once every week or two. I haven't noticed any issues yet, but I imagine she will get micro scratches after time but silver will hide them.
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  5. brady

    brady Member

    It has the spinning brushes, I figured white should be ok. Older I get the more "convenience" Im willing to pay for.
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  6. loomis2

    loomis2 Well-Known Member

    I will always take my cars through the auto car wash. There is a Mike's Car Wash just down the street and I can take the car through in five minutes for about $15. That is totally worth it to me. I hate washing cars.
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  8. Kendalf

    Kendalf Active Member

    For long term it will be beneficial to have a good paint protection product applied to the car. This will help reduce the abrasions from the car wash brushes, and even better will make it easier to wipe off things like bird droppings and tree sap, thus reducing the number of car washes that may be needed.

    But yes, I'm with @brady about convenience as I get older!
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  9. HariN

    HariN New Member

    Are there any concerns that water jets hitting underneath the vehicle during wash?

    Sent from my iPhone using Inside EVs
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  10. M.M.

    M.M. Active Member

    I'm glad to see I'm not the only one who gets progressively more willing to tolerate a little paint wear in exchange for time and energy not spent washing a car as I get older.
    I can't imagine it would be any worse than driving on a wet road or hitting puddles. Actually, I'd assume hitting a puddle at highway speeds is significantly worse.
  11. kkiran

    kkiran Member

    I used to wash my Tesla Model S with ONR solution. It is the two bucket car wash which worked great.

    The Clarity on the other hand felt completely different. Not sure there was some better paint protection on the Teslas but the Clarity is not worth using ONR solution unless clear bra or something is applied which I think is an overkill!

    Sent from my iPhone using Inside EVs
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  13. Ken7

    Ken7 Active Member

    Unless the car wash is particularly brutal, I see no issues with automatic car washes. I use it on our Clarity and I use it without fear on my Tesla Model S. The car comes out immaculate and better than anything I could do by hand. I don't see swirl marks on either car and I haven't seen an issue with our past cars either. I think some have an unnecessary fear of automatic car washes.

    The ones in our area have the rotating brushes (actually rotating strips of cloth) that contact the car on all sides.

    When I had been leasing cars from Lexus, they always looked forward to my returns because they were in such great shape...and those cars always got automatic car washes. ;)

    I will add that I do wax my cars about once every month or two.
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  14. Kendalf

    Kendalf Active Member

    I'd say that the wax makes all the difference, as instead of brushing against the actual clearcoat layer of the car's paint the brushes are contacting the wax. So the paint underneath remains swirl and scratch free.
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  15. barnesgj

    barnesgj Active Member

    Have used the auto carwash with those giant felt strips with no issues. I imagine they are loaded with the previous cars' dirt and crude, but so far paint looks great. I just cannot see washing this car by hand. Even if I were not lazy, it's just too big with too many holes to clean out. I think my dealer put a special finish on (and charging me for it of course), which may be why it's holding up so well.
    I used to use the car wash where they drive it in and make you get out. With Neutral on a timer, I have been reluctant to go back there. Has anyone used one of these carwashes?
  16. Ken7

    Ken7 Active Member

    Yes, I use that type of car wash all the time. However I simply tell them I must stay in the car as it will not stay in neutral if I get out. They have no issues with that (after initially speaking with the manager). Between my Tesla and Clarity, they now know I’m the guy that must always stay in the car. ;)

    If they’re reluctant to let you stay, you can remind them of their liability should the transmission be damaged. But I doubt most car wash managers or owners will have an issue. Most already know that Tesla owners must stay in the car unless it’s in ‘tow mode’, which I won’t do. If they still resist, you’re at the wrong car wash.
  17. AlanSqB

    AlanSqB Active Member

    Put the car in neutral and then press neutral again. It’s called car wash mode. My car wash seems to be very familiar with it.

    Anyone have a good recommendation for wax? I was thinking of getting the Meguires Black Wax or the Ultimate.
  18. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    Well, the old school guys will argue for carnuba wax but I’ve found that a polymer wax like NuFinish (or any brand of polymer wax) beads water longer on my cars.
    Hint: Treat the rubber and plastic with 303 Protectant and any wax that accidentally gets on them will come off easier without leaving the dreaded white haze. Also, I touch up (especially around gaskets on door sills and hard to reach areas) with a spray wax that doesn’t have to dry to a powder.
  19. loomis2

    loomis2 Well-Known Member

    KentuckyKen, you need to drive up to Cincinnati to wax my car, because I know I will never do it myself. :)
  20. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    You can’t afford me. Besides after waxing,installing the dash cam, and running the wire for my ChargePoint, I’m on meds with my back. (Old motorcycle accident and old age).

    It’s not that bad if you do it once a year w polymer wax and do one panel at a time over multiple days. (Says the guy on meds and a heating pad!)
  21. ncatoffice

    ncatoffice New Member

    Gave her the first wash today. Took about 3 hours.
    Started with a pre-wash using a power wash and foam canon, followed by the two bucket wash. Then did paint decontamination (see pictures with the pink streaks). I am always amazed by the junk that comes out during this stage. Followed this up with clay bar. Happy with the end result. Like the gloss that I could get on the car.

    First two pictures show the pink streaks; thats the hidden contaminants coming out of the paint
    IMG_20180513_190646.jpg IMG_20180513_191522.jpg
    The remaining pictures show the end result
    IMG_20180513_201620.jpg IMG_20180513_201710.jpg IMG_20180513_201726.jpg MVIMG_20180513_201648.jpg

    Attached Files:

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  22. AlanSqB

    AlanSqB Active Member

    Ncatoffice, great shots. Nice finish. Would you mind following up with the names of the products used?
  23. ncatoffice

    ncatoffice New Member

    For the foam Canon, I use Chemical Guys snow foam shampoo
    The wash stage (two bucket) was with meguiars gold class. That's not my first preference, but I have to finish that container :). My preference is to use another one of the chemical guys shampoo.
    The decontaimenation was with Carpro Iron X followed by meguiars clay bar. Drying process was with Ammo Hydrate. The foam Canon I use is the MTM one.
    Didn't don't he wheels. When i do the wheels, I use Ammo brute
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