How to Wash a Car: Ultimate Car Cleaning Guide

How to Wash a Car: Ultimate Car Cleaning Guide

So, your father told you to wash his car, or you just feel like washing all the dust and dirt off your own vehicle, or the local car wash is not open yet so you have to do all the hard work yourself. Whatever the situation, you do not need to worry or overthink. Since you may have figured it all out by yourself by now, washing a car is really easy. Just spray some water, wipe the car with a cloth, wash it with a detergent, and clean it up, right? Indeed! See, as told before, it is really not that difficult and can be done by literally anyone. There are just a few tricks that you should perform and refrain yourself from not doing some particular things so as to prevent a mishap from occurring. Here is our ultimate car cleaning guide on ‘how to wash a car’.

Best place to wash a car:

Let’s first look at the basics. The first and most important question you should ask yourself is, what is the best place to wash a car? Well, the answer is pretty simple but we will try to explain it a little to you so you can get the context and the proper reason behind your actions. The best place to wash a car is anywhere out of direct contact with sunlight. Vehicles are made up in such a way that they absorb heat a lot and that could potentially interrupt your cleaning process since the water would evaporate rapidly. Not only will the water dry off soon, it will also leave behind spots on your vehicle that look really bad and are hard to clean if not properly taken care of. 

Therefore, before you start with the car wash, make sure that you are at a place where there is no direct sunlight because otherwise, you might end up putting your car at a risk.

What to wash a car with?

The second most important thing that comes into a person’s mind whenever car wash at home is talked about is what to wash my car with? Water, obviously… Jokes aside (especially the bad ones), your vehicle is usually supposed to be washed with water. Detergents are a plus point since they wash it better and give a new shine to your vehicle, however, they are not mandatory but are really recommended. Car detergents are made of special materials that do not mess up the paint of the vehicle or leave any marks. There are plenty of other alternatives to car detergents and some of them can even be prepared at home by mixing a few things. Please do note that they will not be as effective as the original, branded car detergents.

Can you use laundry detergent to wash a car?

Ah, yes… the question that is being asked since way back when the cars were first developed. The answer to this question is yes, but actually no. Can you use laundry detergent to wash a car? Yes. Should you use laundry detergent to wash a car? Yes, but not every time. Laundry detergents are specially made with chemicals and components specialized for cleaning the clothes. They have particles that extract dirt and other unwanted things out of fabric and are supposed to be used in a washing machine for clothes, not for cars. Although they can remove dust, dirt, spots and other sorts of stuff, you should know that they might harm your vehicle’s paint or leave a spot behind. They don’t usually do that but overly using a detergent may result in that happening. Be sure that if you do use laundry detergent, you use it wisely.

What things do I need to wash a car?

There are some things that you will need in order to wash your vehicle. These include:

1- Water hose/pipe

2- Bucket

3- Detergent

4- Cloth

How to wash a car?

The best way to wash a car is to take it to the professionals at car washes. They know everything about washing a vehicle so they can probably do the cleaning better than a lay man. However, if they are not available and you want to perform a car wash at home, you will need to imitate the steps they perform in order to achieve a successful car wash. Stick to the following steps while washing a car:

Spray your car with water:

Spray your car with water. It is pretty self-explanatory. You should stay away from your vehicle and spray water on it from a distance and do not increase the water pressure just yet. Just make the car wet to remove any dust on it and to prepare it for the upcoming steps.

Clean the car:

The next step involves properly cleaning the vehicle. Start from the bottom of the vehicle and work your way up. Start with the tyres, clean them properly and scrub them if necessary. After that, work your way up slightly and clean all parts of the vehicle except the windows. We will handle those later.

Apply the detergent:

While cleaning, apply the detergent on your vehicle properly on the parts that you feel like it’s necessary. Tyres and bodies are mandatory. 

Clean the detergent:

Let the detergent stay on for just a few minutes and after that, spray your vehicle with water once again to clean the detergent. This will remove both the detergent and dirt particles stuck on the vehicle.

Clean the windows:

Remember when we left cleaning the windows at the end? Well, now’s the time to shift our focus back on them. Check out our best way to clean car windows heading below in order to find out the right steps to clean the windows.

Dry the car:

When you have finished cleaning the vehicle, let it dry for a bit. You can go for a snack while the vehicle dries. It happens pretty quickly, so you would not need to wait a really long time for it to occur.


In order to learn properly about how to wax your vehicle, check out our article here.

Best way to clean car windows:

Car windows are really sensitive and not like other windows. Most of the window cleaners are Ammonium-based cleaners and they are harmful to car windows. Never use them to clean the windows. If you want a better cleaning solution, head over to your local automotive shop, car wash, or any related shop and ask them for a window cleaner that is specifically designed to clean the car windows. Once you have acquired them, just use them to clean the car windows like any other windows. Just please don’t… scrub hard, otherwise, it will leave marks on the windows.

That was all from our side on how to wash a car! If you want to check out more driving and vehicle-related articles, check out our blog and if you want to learn or practice driving test, head over to Easy Driving Test right now!

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