How to Wash a Car

Regularly washing your car helps keep it looking sleek, but it also protects the exterior paint and controls any imperfections you can’t see, like tiny scratches. Brent Brown Toyota is here to help Provo drivers keep their new Toyota vehicles looking their best. That’s why we put together an easy-to-follow car washing guide.



Plan Ahead

Does your car need a quick wash or the full package? Usually, new or recently waxed and polished cars will need only a wash and wax. However, if your vehicle has been exposed to the elements for a few months without attention, it will most likely need more.

Rinse & Wash

Before starting, rinse your car to remove loose dirt and debris. Use car washing mitts and drying cloths to clean your car’s surface more thoroughly. After that, wash the windows with an ammonia-free solution that was designed just for cars. If you are wondering how to clean a car windshield inside, give our service team a call! Then, use a low-strength, acid-free pH balanced aluminum wheel cleaner to clean the wheels and tires.

car wash detail


Remove Bumps & Apply Compound

Next, grab a clay bar and gently buff away tree sap and any other contaminants attached to your car’s surface. If you want, you can apply compound with a dual-action polisher to smooth tiny scratches beneath the surface. The compound usually needs 2-4 coats.

Apply Polish (If Needed)

Dual-action polishers work best. The polish has oils that make the car look sleek and glossy. You can use an orbital buffer or a soft towel to apply the polish. While orbital buffers are faster, they give you less control over the finished look. Also, if debris comes between the pad and your car while it’s in motion, you can end up scratching your car.

Wax Your Car

Car wax does so much more than improve the appearance of your vehicle; it protects the paint from UV rays and helps it retain its sheen. Carnauba and polymer are the two most common types of car wax. Polymer wax will cost more than carnauba, but it doesn’t haze, and you don’t have to set it for long periods.

How Often to Wash a Car

How often you wax depends on how often you drive. Do you just run errands, or are you more adventurous? If you’re traveling from Lehi to Draper for work, for example, it’s recommended to wash your car every two weeks and wax it every six months. If you’re taking your Toyota RAV4 off the beaten path for off-roading adventures, clean it as soon as you can afterward.

How to Wash a Car: Tips

  • Cleaning Supplies: Instead of hand soap, dish soap, or household glass cleaner, use solutions that are designed to protect your car’s paint. Use a natural sponge or wool mitt to wash.
  • Washing: Lather up your car with soap and clean the sponge with fresh water as you wash the car body, windows, tires, and wheels.
    Drying: Don’t air-dry your car, as this can cause swirl marks. Use a chamois or terry cloth towel to hand-dry the surface.

Get More Car Care Tips from Brent Brown Toyota!

If you have more questions about how to properly wash your car, or you want to know how car AC works, is it illegal to drive barefoot, or how to do an oil change on a Toyota Camry, visit Brent Brown Toyota in Orem. Our service department can assist and offer excellent car-washing tips for your Toyota. We can also help answer any other questions like, is gap insurance worth it. We’re here to make your car-buying and service appointment as stress-free as possible!

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