Car Care Guide – How to avoid water spots when washing car?

How would it feel when you spent two good hours cleaning your car and it turned out dirtier than before? Hurtful, right? Surprisingly, it is because of some minor mistakes that most people make while washing, which leads to water spots on the car as a final result.

How to avoid water spots when washing car? Is that even possible? Luckily it’s possible only if you know a few tricks and tips. While to some, it might not sound like a big problem, water spots left after washing can invite a host of problems to your car’s finish. In worse cases, it could damage your car’s paintwork permanently. So it’s better to remember the old saying; prevention is better than cure.

With that, let’s begin answering how to avoid water spots when washing car!

What causes water spots on a car after washing?

Multiple factors can be involved in causing water spots on a car after washing. Some of them are:

  • Using too much soap or detergent when washing cars
  • Underlying dirt not cleansed off thoroughly
  • Not washing away, the soap properly
  • Hot temperatures while washing
  • Improper cleaning
  • Too much exposure to the sun
  • Not giving proper drying time
  • Use of low-quality or incorrect products
  • Extreme wear and tear on the car’s paint

Other causes

Here are some improper methods of washing that causes water spots to appear on the surface of the car.

  • Not using enough detergent or soap

The most common mistake people make while washing a car is not using enough soap or cleaning products. Soap plays a vital role in removing dirt and waxes stuck on a car’s surface. When we don’t use enough detergent, those oils and waxes stay on the paint’s surface, allowing the UV rays to pierce through it and cause harm to the underlying metal.

  • Not rinsing off the soap properly:

Car washing is not just about applying soap and scrubbing. Washing off the soap is an integral step and must be done with the utmost attention. When soap is not properly washed off, it sits on the car’s surface and causes the paint to absorb. This creates a bumpy surface that attracts grime and dirt.

  • Not Drying the car properly:

Often even the slightest mistakes can dump all your efforts in the garbage. Let’s say you applied the detergent, scrubbed away all the waxes and oils, and rinsed it BUT didn’t dry your car properly. The cherry on top, you parked it outdoor right below the sun.  After a while, the remaining moisture on its surface attracts dust and dirt, making it look dirty.

How to avoid water spots when washing car?

How to wash your car to avoid water spots
Shutterstock Licensed Image

To avoid water spots on a car’s surface, you need to opt for a professional cleaning method, rinse the car properly and dry all the moisture immediately. Below we have detailed how to wash a car and what equipment and products you will be required to carry out the process.

9 Things that you will require

  • Bucket

To conduct car washing, you will need to have a bucket big enough to hold soap water to wash a car. If you already have a bucket solely for washing, you can use that too.

  • Washing Mitt

Secondly, you need to have a washing mitt. It is a pouched shape piece of cloth that conveniently fits in your hand. It works best for car washing as it scrubs gently but effectively. Moreover, it does not harm the car’s paint and holds water for longer to do the washing quickly.

  • Hose without nozzle

While using a hose with a spray or ‘jet’ feature may be time-saving and wash off the car quickly, this can cause awful-looking water spots on your car’s surface. Therefore, it is recommended to use a car washing hose without a nozzle so that water can s flow freely onto the car’s surface without making water spots.

  • Microfiber Cloth

Next, you would need a microfiber cloth for drying. What is so special about this material is its ability to absorb water faster. It lessens your efforts and brings out better results. Moreover, it tightly holds on a car’s surface, preventing water spots and streaks from forming after drying.

  • Leaf Blower/Dryer

You can also use a dryer or leaf blower to make the drying easier. However, it’s completely optional. You can only use it to dry hard-to-reach areas.

  • Water spot remover

You can immediately remove water spots from your car after washing using a water spot remover. It is also optional however it will take fewer efforts than re-washing.

  • Water Filtration System

Sometimes the quality of water can also be the reason for water spots on your car. It is because when you use water full of minerals, they appear on the surface after drying.

Especially, when hard water is used for car washing, it causes minerals to appear and leave permanent marks on the surface. That was not all. Hard water is difficult to lather. Hence more soap is required to achieve the desired leathering, which would be costly. 

  • Water Spot remover

You need to have a water spot remover to be on the safe side. In case you notice any water spots, clean them using the water spot remover.

  • Car Wax

You won’t need a car wash for car washing and drying, however, you will require it to protect the paint from permanent damage as well as dirt and scratches.

Note: If you are to apply car wax, bear in mind that removing water spots from a wax layer won’t be easier if there are any left.

Method – How to wash your car to avoid water spots?

Here is a step-by-step procedure to wash your car. Follow the sequence and you will be glad about the final results.

Step 1 – Washing in the right weather and location

Location and weather conditions are vital factors when it comes to cleaning a car, especially a darker one. This is because dark colors fade off when exposed to the sun.

So either you wash your car in the evening or earlier in the morning before the hot hours. If you need to wash your car urgently during the day, try using a shade.

Step 2 – Wash using a quality soap or detergent

Now bring a bucket full of water, pour the car wash shampoo and make it lather. Once the solution is made, start applying it to the car’s surface using a washing mitt, section by section.

If you want to remove oils and waxes, try using cold soaps and detergents as they work best for them.

Step 3 – Rinse Properly using a hose without a nozzle

The third step involves washing off the soap or detergent solution you applied in the second step. However, here you need to take care of a few things, first, use a hose without a nozzle for rinsing. Secondly, wash section by section just like you did while soaping. Rinse thoroughly to wipe off any residue.

Step 4 – Dry Immediately

 It is important to dry out each section as soon as it is washed to avoid the formation of water spots. Once you have rinsed the car, take the microfiber cloth and start drying section by section so that no water is left on any area for long.

However, if you are in a hurry, you can use a leaf blower or dryer on this step. It will make your work faster and easier.

Step 5 – Apply Water Spot Remover

Hopefully, you won’t need a water spot remover after drying. However, if you find any water spots in a few areas, you can use a water spot remover to clear them. Refer to the application instructions on it to know how to use it. 

Step 6 – Wax your car

This step is completely optional. If you want to protect your just washed car from dust and grime in future, you need to apply a protective layer of car wax on its surface. Take a car wash of your choice and apply it using your hand in a circular motion. And if it’s a spray, you can directly apply it to your car’s surface.

Once done, let it sit for at least a few minutes, according to the manufacturer’s guide. After that, wipe it off and apply polish to leave a nice finish.

Wrapping Up – How to avoid water spots when washing car?

So that was all about removing water spots from your car after washing. It might seem like a daunting task just reading about it. However, it’s the opposite in actuality. In fact, once you are done with all the washing and waxing, you will be happier to see the final results.

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