A dirty car dims your outlook on life. A quality car wash brightens your day as it protects your auto body paint. Keeping your vehicles clean and bright maintains its finish and its resale value. You have a variety of options in the Madison WI area from do-it-yourself wash stalls to custom vehicle detailing sites.
For decades car-owners have been washing cars in the driveway. That’s still a solid option. If that’s your first choice, professionals suggest you consider:
- Avoiding direct sunlight – do-it-yourselfers often wash their vehicles in direct sunlight that can soften a vehicle’s paint and lead to water spots. If your driveway is rarely in the shade, another option is a better choice.
- Use enough water – amateurs want to complete the job quickly and often don’t use enough water to safely remove all the dirt and grime.
- Using the right ‘soap’ – the wrong soap, especially dish washing detergents, removes protective waxes and leaves residue on the your car’s paint.
These simple things can result in a poor result and can do more harm than good.
Keeping Auto Body Paint Clean
Keeping your car clean and protecting its paint leads to a better trade-in value. All things being equal, vehicles with faded or dingy-looking paint trade at 20% less value than well-maintained models. Making a solid first impression is always important. Protecting auto body paint is an easy, basic way to guard your investment.
If you cannot, or don’t want to wash your car yourself at home, you have choices in the Madison area. For a professional wash plus custom detailing, see what AutoColor has to offer. Otherwise, consider:
A self-service wash site – around the area there are many car wash locations where you can take advantage of professional and supplies. Information collected by Consumer Reports magazine suggests you avoid washing your car right after you’ve been driving for an extended period or the vehicle has been parked in the sun for a long time. The heat causes soap and water to dry too fast, leaving spots. Washing and rinsing one section at a time helps prevent spotting.
Automatic Car Wash For A Quick Job
There are several types of automatic car washes around the area, too. Some very basic installations are connected with local gas stations. They typically move vehicles along a conveyor system from one station to another. It is an automated cleaning and drying operation. Many use some type of brushes to remove dirt and grime while others boast being “touch-free.” Touch-free use soap, water and air to complete the job. Nothing harsh touches the paint so there’s little chance of cosmetic damage.
No system is perfect. Consider the benefits of a brushless system:
- No touching – no brushes or rough surfaces contact your vehicle’s paint. High-pressure water “slides” dirt away.
- Value – relatively inexpensive and come with additional services like under body wash, waxes and tire/wheel cleaning.
- Ideal for Wisconsin winters – the threats to your car’s paint job peak when road salt and winter debris is prevalent. Undercarriage wash is especially valuable.
- Water wise – Laws mandate the use recycled water. This feature is both a pro and con depending on your viewpoint. Some people say recycled water is “dirty water.”
The use of recycled water may be considered a negative and there are others to consider:
- Chemical additives – the chemicals in soaps and rinses for brushless wash systems are considered harsher than in some other options. They must be able to dissolve dirt without scrubbing. Opponents suggest they wear away the protective outer layers of auto body paint.
- Incomplete washing – sprays and films don’t reach all the spots dirt and grime get into. You may have to hand-wash those spots anyway. The vehicle looks “better” but over time residue may cloud the overall surface.
- Incomplete drying – dried automatically by blowers, the surface isn’t completely covered. Water is forced into nooks and cracks. For a complete job you have to touch up by hand.
Auto Body Paint Benefits From Professional Detailing
For quick, periodic cleaning these car wash options all play a vital role. However, none compete with the value of a professional auto detailing service.
Visit either AutoColor Madison area location for complete auto body shop services – West on Parmenter Road in Middleton and East on Stoughton Road. We provide a wide range of services for vehicle care and repair. That includes professional auto body detailing – inside and outside. Our specialists provide the latest auto body paint care and protection in the Madison WI area.