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post #1 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 10:07 PM Thread Starter
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Lightbulb Touchless carwash question

FINALLY!!! About a mile and a half south of my driveway a TOUCHLESS car wash has opened up. Now... here is my question: I heard through the grapevine that if I was to take my trep through there 5 or 6 times, that after a while the clearcoat will become f****d up. Is there any truth to this? I NEVER take "her" through the standard car washes. Too many swirls and scratches. I have taken the trep through this touchless car wash once, and my oh my did she come out looking good as new. Any ideas or thoughts?
~~Tony~~

APRIL 2003 IOM
Current car: 2009 Toyota Corolla Type S (Thinking what my first mod will be)

2nd car: 2000 Dodge Intrepid SE Clear Corners, Exhaust, and Rims are just SOME of the goodies installed...
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post #2 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 10:13 PM
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I use them on a regular basis and my car looks just fine

as long as you take the time to do regular cleanings and waxes your car will be fine
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post #3 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 10:13 PM
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I don't use car washes at all, and this is my reason. When I wash my own car (and detail others on the side) I know what kind of chemicals and products I am using. I know if I'm using a detergent, I know if I'm using anything abrasive. I just LOVE the wax feature....what a joke. I think its just soap, just a different color, lol. Seriously, I don't see any reason not to use it in the winter months when its shitty outside, but nothing beats a hand washing. YOU know if its not leaving a film, YOU know if it didn't miss any spots. I don't think the "touchless" systems really do any damage to the paint or clearcoat, but then again.....do you really know whats being used to clean your car?
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post #4 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 10:17 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally posted by BlackTrep911
I don't use car washes at all, and this is my reason. When I wash my own car (and detail others on the side) I know what kind of chemicals and products I am using. I know if I'm using a detergent, I know if I'm using anything abrasive. I just LOVE the wax feature....what a joke. I think its just soap, just a different color, lol. Seriously, I don't see any reason not to use it in the winter months when its shitty outside, but nothing beats a hand washing. YOU know if its not leaving a film, YOU know if it didn't miss any spots. I don't think the "touchless" systems really do any damage to the paint or clearcoat, but then again.....do you really know whats being used to clean your car?
Don't get me wrong... I would much rather hand wash and wax the trep, but since it's getting colder outside, I really don't want to be outside and washing the car while I'm freezing my butt off. The funny thing was that the soap that was used was pink. The color of the wax was... pink... LOL... hmmmm.... :crazy:
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post #5 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 10:21 PM
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The other problem with not doing it yourself is a lot of those places recyle the water cheaper for them but concentration of detergent in rinse water can get high, not all do this however.
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post #6 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 10:24 PM
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Yeah, exactly....hey, what is the name of the system they use, is it like Powerwash 2000 or something? There is actually some halfway decent touchless washes around here, at the Mobil gas stations. The shitty thing is, I'd rather freeze my ass off then spend 9 bucks on the "Works' carwash! The last time I went thought (and I do mean LAST) a touchless car wash, it cleaned the car....but it also completely stripped 2 layers of wax and polish I applied 1 week prior..... GRRR!!!!
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post #7 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 10:26 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally posted by BlackTrep911
I'd rather freeze my ass off then spend 9 bucks on the "Works' carwash!
The works at this car wash runs $7.00... they even accept credit card, and debit!
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post #8 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 10:33 PM
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Well, its 9 bucks here.....the 7 dollar "Deluxe" option doesnt have the "wax" option....lol
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post #9 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 11:22 PM
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The main problem with touchless car washes is the pressure and harshness of the detergent used. Since there is no contact with the car it relies on high pressure to "blast" away the dirt. Not a great thing for any type of finish. The detergents are also much harsher since there isn't any contact. Personally, I avoid automatic car washes as all costs. However, if I lived in an area where the Trep would get salty in the winter I would probably consider using one on an occassional basis...
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post #10 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 11:24 PM
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yep, us New England types really need the undercarriage spraying in the winter time
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post #11 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 11:28 PM
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I do not think it will damage your clear coat or anything but it will likely strip off any wax. The detergents/soap they use are very harsh...only way they can clean without touching the car...even then I have found they do not really work that well and usually leave the car still dirty especially if you are trying to get off salt/wet road grime.

I have vowed not to use the autowashes on my trep but I have used them regularly (probably 150+ times in the past 4 years) with my Explorer and the paint has held up very well. I do think they are better than not washing at all and leaving the salt/dirt on the car. They are also a lot better than any wash that use those damn spinning brushes...those will F up your clear coat and give you swirls. The soft cloth washes are ok as long as they are well maintaned.

I totally understand that hand washing a car when it is freezing out sucks. If you are going to use the autowashes...I would recommend trying to at least wax the car 1-2 times (or more) over the winter. Use a polymer wax like Meguiars Polymer or Liquid Glass or Nu Finish. These waxes are very easy to work with and will stand up a little better to the car washes. Then in the spring plan on giving the car a good clearcoat scrub/polish/wax and she should hold up pretty well.

]
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post #12 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 11:33 PM
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[QUOTE]The main problem with touchless car washes is the pressure and harshness of the detergent used. Since there is no contact with the car it relies on high pressure to "blast" away the dirt. Not a great thing for any type of finish. The detergents are also much harsher since there isn't any contact. Personally, I avoid automatic car washes as all costs. However, if I lived in an area where the Trep would get salty in the winter I would probably consider using one on an occassional basis...

I totally agree....even when you hand wash a car, there a several options out there to choice from to prevent, for lack of a better word, friction on vehicle paint surfaces. I got into an argument with a friend of mine recently about how much soap I use to wash my car....he says I use to much, wasting soap. I explained to him that I use more soap than the manufacturer suggests to make more suds....more suds equals less contact of the applicator (sponge, mitt, etc.) on the paints surface....therefore less swirl marks, fine scratches, and so on. Even though these are "touchless" carwashes, they require more water pressure, and stronger detergents to remove dirt...THEREFORE causing more damage than a handwashing.....WHEW, I need to shut up....lol...... DETERGENT SOAP=BYE BYE WAX
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post #13 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 11:33 PM
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The most important thing with keeping a good car finish is to religiously polish and wax. You should polish once every two months and wax every month if you do that your car will look great even after using car washes.
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post #14 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-06-2002, 11:40 PM
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by BlackTrep911
Quote:
I got into an argument with a friend of mine recently about how much soap I use to wash my car....he says I use to much, wasting soap. I explained to him that I use more soap than the manufacturer suggests to make more suds....more suds equals less contact of the applicator (sponge, mitt, etc.) on the paints surface
There is some truth to what your friend is telling you...too much soap can be a bad thing. Can tend to leave a soap film/haze on the car and make it much more difficult to dry the car. Drying is generally the most dangerous action when hand washing a car. Also make sure you are washing with a nice mitt or some other material that will keep from getting particles lodged in it and causing scratches.
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post #15 of 40 (permalink) Old 11-07-2002, 12:03 AM Thread Starter
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I use one of those "sheep" mitts to wash the car.
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