Learn the Proper Way to Pressure Wash Your Car

Wilbert Tan

The way your car looks reflects on your personality. If you want to let people know that you’ve got it together, you need to keep your car looking spic and span. On the other hand, cleaning your car might seem like an added burden if you have too busy a schedule. Whether you’re someone who prefers to wash your car thoroughly or quickly, a pressure washer is an effective tool to achieve both. Most people think that a pressure washer is too powerful for a car’s paint surface, but you won’t damage anything if you know how to use a pressure washer properly. Plus, it will take you no more than 10 minutes to thoroughly clean your car. Now that’s efficiency and convenience!

Below, we provide you a guide on everything you need to know about cleaning your car with a pressure washer, and it’s a lot easier than you think.

1. Begin the right way

Before you pull the pressure washer trigger, you must first find a good spot to clean your car, preferably an open space that’s a good distance from your house, such as a large driveway or street. Your walls or flooring may not be able to withstand the pressure washer’s power, and you don’t want to damage them. Experts recommend a pressure washer with a 1200-1900 PSI (pounds per square inch) setting and 1.4-1.6 GPM (gallons per minute) flow.

Once you have the right pressure washing equipment, connect the garden hose to your pressure washer and fill the detergent tank with car wash detergent. If you’re using an electric washer, make sure you have a long enough extension cord so you can go around the car with ease.

2. Start pressure washing your car

Pressure washers come with different nozzle attachments–choose the 40-degree nozzle, as this produces a low-power spray that applies detergent and removes dirt at the same time. When spraying, keep the wand three feet away from the car, spraying from the bottom up to prevent the detergent from streaking. Be mindful of the mirrors—don’t spray directly at them. If you encounter stubborn dirt, don’t bring the wand nearer—scrape them off instead. As for the wheel wells, it’s okay to move closer in these areas, as these tend to be the dirtiest part of the car and you don’t need to worry about any paint finish under there.

3. Leave the soap on for five minutes

Give the detergent time to work its magic. Let it stay on the paint finish for five minutes, making sure to spray from time to time to prevent the soap from drying and caking.

4. Rinse

Disconnect the detergent tank, then run the washer for a brief moment to clear the soap out of the system. Now rinse your car from the top down, keeping the wand three to four feet away. When you’re done rinsing, dry your car using a lint-free microfiber cloth.

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