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self-service car wash

From the rainbow lights to the jets of bubbling soap, car washes are an experience in themselves. However, giving your car maximum cleaning is oftentimes more suited for a self-service car wash experience than an automatic one. Self-service car washes allow customers to get their vehicles squeaky clean with the different tools and choices offered at self service car washes. Are you looking to learn how to maximize your self-service car wash experience? Keep reading to find out manual car wash and more.

Pros & Cons of Self-Service Car Washes

Self-service car washes are typically better for your vehicle than automatic car washes—there is less likelihood of scratching, more likelihood of getting your car spotless, and a more affordable option than paying someone to hand-wash your car. But, there are also a few downsides to self-service car washes.


  • Affordability: Hand-washing is superior to automatic washing. However, paying a company to handwash your car can be pricey (pricing can range from $50-120). Using a self-service car wash is a lot more affordable, as self-service car washes start at around $5.
  • Control: Unlike automatic car washes where soap and water randomly spray at your vehicle, self-service car washes allow for more control. With self-service car washes, you can clean certain areas more and other areas less to get the cleanliness you desire.
  • Care: Using a self-service car wash allows you to show more care to your vehicle—you can wash places that automatic car washes can’t reach, you can hand-wax your car, and you can dry it with your own highly absorbent towels to prevent streaking and other water stains that are usually not removed from automatic car washes’ drying “fans.”


  • Convenience: Hand-washing your car is less convenient than automatic car washes, as you can’t just sit in your car and let the machinery do the work for you. Using a self-service car wash requires your personal time and care.
  • Lack of Knowledge: If you’re unfamiliar with the different tools that are available at self-service car washes, you could end up damaging your car if the tools aren’t used properly.
  • Water Quality: Oftentimes, the water quality at self-service car washes is unfiltered. If this is the case, it can cause water stains to appear on your vehicle. If you’re concerned about the quality of the water available, it’s best to ask a car wash employee before using it.

Different Tools & Choices at the Car Wash

Self-service car washes offer many different choices to achieve the cleanliness you are looking for. Understanding all of the options will help you get the results you’re looking for.

  • Pre-Soak: Start off by soaking your car. Make sure to get into the window and door cracks to remove any dirt and other grime that has built-up.
  • High-Pressure Soap: Saturate your entire vehicle with the high-pressure soap tool and use a wash mitt to scrub any dead bugs, stains, or grime from your car.
  • High-Pressure Rinse: After scrubbing, use the high-pressure rinse to clean off your car for a spot-free, streak-free finish.

Bring-Your-Own Drying Tools

Drying your car after a wash is imperative in ensuring there are no streaks or water stains after washing. However, the drying offerings at self-service car washes are usually not top-notch. Bringing your own drying tools with you is your best bet to achieve high-quality results. Using a Poly Vinyl Alcohol (PVA) cloth will keep your car scratch-free and absorb more water than other towels. Bringing your own drying tools is key to a successful self-service car wash experience!

Premium Wash Mitt for Car Cleaning

CleanTools Gives the Results You Want!

CleanTools will help you have a great self-service car wash experience! Amplify the cleanliness and drying of your car with premium products that keep your vehicle clean and free of damage.

  • Premium Wash Mitt: CleanTools’ Premium Wash Mitt is the ideal product for gently removing any dirt and grime without causing damage to your vehicle’s paint.
  • The Absorber®: The Absorber® is made from PVA, allowing it to be a great option for drying your car after a self-service car wash.

Get Amazing Car-Washing Results!

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