The Harmful Effects of a Drive-Through Car Wash on Your Vehicle

The drive-through car wash has been an American favorite for a long time now. Let’s be honest, it’s the easiest and most convenient way to maintain the exterior surface of your vehicle. To that point it’s probably not close.

But it’s a well-hidden secret in the automated car wash world that this process actually has harmful effects on your car. These automated systems and tools will deteriorate your paint over time. It’s one of those things where you think you’re doing the responsible thing as a car owner when in fact your taking detrimental action against the longevity of the paint on your vehicle. Sure maybe you save a little bit of money in the short-term by choosing a car wash over a car detail but you aren’t saving anything in the long-term. In fact, you’ll be losing a ton of money when you need a new paint job earlier than you should.

Why Is the Drive-Through Car Wash so Bad?

Think about what it looks like when you roll up to your local car wash. If you go on the weekend in the spring or summer you probably get stopped in your tracks by a long line of cars waiting to get their vehicles washed. This makes sense because it’s a cheaper option and it’s very quick. But none of those people (and probably you) don’t realize that their losing paint or clear coat every single time they drive through it. How many people have driven through that day? Or that week? Or that month? It’s likely that number lies in the hundreds or even thousands. All of the dirt, dust and grime from those vehicles gets kicked up and caught on those automated machines inside.

All of us remember being amazed by the bubbles and machines massaging our cars the first time we went through one. But that massaging creates a massive amount of friction on the surface of the car and it ends up deteriorating the clear coat or paint on your car. The grime from past vehicles is on these brushes and they’re rubbing against your vehicle at high speeds. That can absolutely results in scratches.

The Aftermath

Most times the damage is invisible. Your clear coat is just that, clear. How are you supposed to know if it’s being worn away by these machines? It’s likely that you won’t until it’s too late. Your paint will start to fade after repeated use and you’ll end up paying for a complete paint job.

Don’t choose a drive-through car wash to save a few bucks and a little bit of time. Contrary to popular belief, a full car detail is the responsible thing to do and your car will look way better! A car is the second largest investment/purchase that most Americans make in their lives so it’s important that you take care of that purchase to the best of your ability.

Don’t fall into the trap of these car washes. Call Mod Finishes so we can help you maintain your vehicle the right way. We’ll have your car looking better than any other in Colorado Springs.