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Is it stupid to wash a car?

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  • Is it stupid to wash a car?

    I have gone from leasing every 3 years to realizing that cars are for A to B. I don’t exactly drive a beater, but I don’t care about it looking nice and shiny. I park outside, and it rains from time to time. Am I dumb to plan to never get another car wash again? Or am I risking a breakdown from salt demolishing the underbody of my car

  • #2
    I cannot remember my last car wash. I have a friend who owns a chain of car washes (now with a national footprint), and I recently ran into him at a party. I always ask him about business, and it is always booming (though very weather dependent, in the short term). He says that there are some customers who get their cars washed multiple times per week!

    I told him that I could not remember my last car wash (I can go a year or more between them), and he said he could not remember his either.

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    • #3
      can't remember mine either.  When my car was young I took better care of its aesthetics, I no longer care.  Have not washed it regularly (i.e. more often than once a year) for the past 10 years and have had no maintenance issues.  I live in a state where the roads get salted only occasionally, but it rains at least once a week.

       

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      • #4




        I have gone from leasing every 3 years to realizing that cars are for A to B. I don’t exactly drive a beater, but I don’t care about it looking nice and shiny. I park outside, and it rains from time to time. Am I dumb to plan to never get another car wash again? Or am I risking a breakdown from salt demolishing the underbody of my car
        Click to expand...


        My husband and I wash our own cars. (My husband is more of a fanatic and almost does this weekly. I've gone from doing this with him weekly to once monthly if I can remember it)

        If you look at some of the YouTube videos out there, it can be a very expensive hobby depending on what equipment you are getting

        We use a simpler 2 bucket method which isn't terribly expensive, provides a smidgen of exercise, and allows you to more closely care for your car. (Per my husband, most serious car enthusiasts wash their own cars anyway and don't drag them through a scratch/swirl filled machine car wash)

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        • #5
          I get car wash once very 4-5 months.

          You dont have to wear suit to clinic everyday, but Mayo docs do. I'm sure they look better than I do in my scrubs.

          Its aesthetics.

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          • #6
            I do not care much for it to be shiny but the undercarriage needs to be washed well in the winter in-between salt cycles if you want the car to last. And the undercarriage option at the car wash is worth nothing. You need a pressure washer and get down in there. And I second the poster above who said not to drag your nice car through the car wash.

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            • #7
              I don't think I'll wash my beater again.  However, I live in a desert, and it always sits in the garage at work and at home, so I can't really rely on Mother Nature to do the work for me.  I've driven my car maybe twice in the last month.

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              • #8
                if you don't wash then there are more oxidizing particles that get stuck and then break down the paint. So I see it as similar to any other kind of upkeep to keep things working well and looking nice (leather conditioning, wood polish, etc). no, you don't have to, but it will keep things looking nicer for longer.

                My husband really enjoys washing our cars at home, so I don't have to do it, but I have heard AT LENGTH how important it is.

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                • #9
                  It gets dusty in our town and hardly ever rains. I dont normally get a wash but if it starts looking awful my wife does it.

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                  • #10
                    I can't remember my last wash.  I rarely do it.  No salt worries here.

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                    • #11
                      the car dealer does it so whenever there is a car problem.

                       

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                      • #12
                        twice per year then i wax it with synthetic sealer (which lasts about 6 months). this is cheap insurance for the paint, and i enjoy doing it. in CA its easy to both overdo it (friends wash every weekend), and never do it (drought, good climate, etc).

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                        • #13
                          I think about this too and feel like its a waste since my fiance gets the garage and i'm stuck parking outside every evening!  I usually get my car washed about once a month in the summer and 1-2 times total during the winter (with my thought it might help wash off some of the de-icing stuff).

                          Its probably a waste, but I do like the way my truck looks the 10min after its washed and still looks good, hahaha.  Maybe I should just take a picture of it after one car wash and set a reminder to in my calendar to look at it once a month and save the $9.50...

                          Jason

                           

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                          • #14
                            It's not even about saving money for me.  It's about saving time.  I hated the errand of going to the car wash, and don't enjoy doing it myself.  So I stopped.

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                            • #15
                              When I grew up every weekend was spent washing cars.

                              But in my own life I just don't have the time.  A few years ago I probably washed the cars whenever they looked dirty.  When I traded my BMW for my SUV, I now probably go months between washes.  Wax once a year or so.

                              Also seems like whenever I wash my car or my wife's car, it rains.

                              And yeah a car wash doesn't do anything for the undercarriage.  IMO by the time you have to worry about corrosion, you should have long moved onto a new car.

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