Spring Car Cleaning Options: Exterior
PROS AND CONS
By re-VIVE Mobile Detailing, Seacoast NH
With spring just around the corner, it is time to start thinking about knocking the winter dirt and grime off your vehicle.
You have four options in getting the exterior of your car cleaned after winter – with pros and cons for each:
Drive-thru Carwash – this is the easy option with a very low time commitment and low financial cost, but it does come at a cost. The cloth “flaps” in the modern car wash are softer on cars when new but they hold on to the dirt from previous vehicles that have been thru the wash. This will cause “micro-scratches” in the paint causing your vehicles appearance to dull over time and can impact the resale/trade-in value of your car.
Touchless Wash – has many of the same benefits as the drive-thru (low cost, minimal time) while being much gentler on the paint. The downside is these are not a great option for the post winter wash as they are not as effective at removing all the dirt. They also use heavy detergents to clean the vehicle which will cause any paint protection on the vehicle like wax or sealant to break down more quickly.
Detailer – a professional detailer will provide the best cleaning of your vehicle. Their process will minimize the risk of micro-scratches while preserving the resale value of your vehicle. The detailer can also apply a paint protectant like wax or sealant after the wash. The downside to hiring a professional detailer is the cost compared to the other options. Brick and mortar detailers also have the inconvenience of dropping your vehicle off and picking it back up while mobile detailers (that come to your home of office) eliminate that issue.
DIY – while effectively detailing a vehicle requires a solid process, it is not an exceptionally difficult task when you take your time. There are great process videos available on YouTube to guide you. The downside to doing it yourself is time – expect the average DIYer to take the better part of a day. You will also need to make a one-time investment in the proper tools.