The Dos and Don’ts of Car Pressure Washing

If you have a car, then you know how important it is to get it washed regularly to keep it looking new, and not to mention the fact that it really does make you feel great when you see it gleaming and spotless. It’s safe to say that we’re all familiar with the standard car washes that you drive through, but now there’s also the option of pressure washing. If you’re curious to know what this is all about, and if it’s something you want to try out with your car, it’s important that you become better informed on the details. 

This is why we’ve made a list with the do’s and don’t of car pressure washing, and by the time you’re done reading this, you’ll know everything there is to know about pressure washing!

Car pressure washing considerations

Car Pressure Washing
(Photo Source: wallpapertip)

With car pressure washing, the hardness of your water impacts efficiency. Your water needs to be soft, as the salts present in hard water can react with soap and form calcified scum. If you’re unsure what the tap water is like in your state, use hot water to limit this effect. As for the pressure, keep the PSI somewhere in between 1200 and 1900. Otherwise, the pressure can have a negative impact on your vehicle. However, exceeding this given PSI would be very difficult, as most garden hoses give 40 to 50 PSI, while most homes produce around 80 PSI, so you have nothing to worry about. 

That said, nozzles come in five basic forms, which are color-coded according to the angle of the head. The color codes are red, yellow, green, white and black. The only nozzle that you should avoid is the red heavy-duty nozzle, since it is not suitable for cars, whereas the rest have different uses. Yellow and green (15 degrees) are good for removing mud; White (40 degrees) is good for general rinsing, while black (65 degrees) is a soaping nozzle that has a sprayer attached to it, which gives users optimal coverage. 

In pressure washing, you have two options to choose from: gas and electric. Both are efficient and exceptionally effective washers. Naturally, finding a good generator will make the washing experience easier, as your pressure washing kit can be mobile. This is also helpful during power outages. However, the generator manufacturers at urge caution against running a generator through a public utility source. So if you are going to get a prime power rated generator, you should make sure that it can be powered through your household’s power supply. 

The Dos

When used correctly, car pressure washers can be very efficient at doing their job. They can have your car looking brand new, all while saving you time. 

Here are the dos of this method.

Rinse the dirt off with water first

Before you get your equipment ready and use your pressure washer, the first thing you should do is rinse the dirt off with water. This is the correct way to start, especially if the outside of your car has a lot of debris and dirt on it. Apart from removing some of the dirt, rinsing your car first will allow the detergent to be applied to the car much more easily, and will have it spread out more efficiently. 

Scrub the detergent with your hands

Now that your vehicle is wet, you should start scrubbing it with your gloved hands, just so you can remove the dirt that has not rinsed off. Although it may seem to be more effective to use the pressure washer to complete this phase, your hands will remove dirt from crevices more effectively. 

Use an angled wand

Seeing as how your car can easily get scratched, avoid using a nozzle that shoots water directly. Instead, you will want to use an angled wand, where the recommended angle is 25 degrees. This way, the water will not be too powerful, but will be strong enough to get the job done. 

Don’t forget the bottom

The bottom of your car is perhaps the place where most dirt and debris is collected. So give it its due attention, and take your time in cleaning it. To do so effectively and with ease, look to get a 40 degree angled nozzle, so that you do not have to bend down in the rinsing process.

car washing
(Photo Source: drivetribe)

The Don’ts 

Just as there are dos that deserve your attention, there too are don’ts that you must avoid to stay protected, and to prevent causing any damage to your vehicle.  

Do not use too much pressure

Cars are very sensitive to pressure, especially in areas such as the windshield and windows. Applying high pressures can crack the glass, whereas in other instances, it can end up breaking it completely. So refrain from applying too much pressure, where the recommended is around 1,200 PSI. 

Put on heavy duty boots

Pressure washers can be difficult to control. Regardless of your pressure washing experience, whether you are a rookie or an expert, you may accidentally spray your toes. To prevent this from happening, you should take off your slippers or sandals, and put on some heavy duty shoes or boots.

Don’t spray the same place for too long

Spraying the same place for too long can harm your car, and can cause dents. You could also scratch your vehicle, or spray off the paint, so keep moving your nozzle around. The entire period of pressure washing your car is recommended to be no more than 20 minutes.

Evidently, car pressure washing is an incredibly safe method that can save you a lot of time. Of course, its efficiency is legendary, which is why more people are making the switch from other traditional methods to this time-saving alternative. As long as you keep in mind these considerations, as well as the basic dos and don’ts of pressure washing, you should not face any issues. And remember to get an appropriate generator for your kit if needed.