How To Properly Clean Your Car During The Winter

Winter temperatures and road salt may be quite damaging to your vehicle. Wash it to protect it even in freezing weather!

Salt is often added to road surfaces in colder sections of the nation to help keep them clear of ice. While salt makes winter driving safer, it may corrode your vehicle. Fortunately, you can ward against rust by routinely washing your automobile, which will remove the salt from the underbelly.

Of course, washing your automobile in frigid weather might be difficult after all; the water is likely to freeze! However, some strategies may be used to do a winter vehicle wash at home successfully.

How Frequently Should You Clean Your Car in the Winter?

Experts typically recommend that if you live in a region where salt is routinely sprayed on the roads, you wash your automobile every 10 to 14 days to avoid corrosion. If feasible, wash immediately after significant snowstorms to remove the salt.

How Do I Wash My Car in the Winter at Home?

Wash your automobile on days when the temperature exceeds 40̊ F or 4°C. In this manner; water is unlikely to freeze on the car, rendering the door locks and windows useless.

If a prolonged period of sub-freezing conditions is expected, it’s a good idea to start your car and drive it about for a few minutes to warm things up before wiping down the vehicle. Additionally, wash during daytime hours to allow the sun to dry the surfaces.

Use lots of clean water to wash away loose dirt and salt, paying particular attention to cleaning the underbelly of the automobile. This method allows you to remove most of the salt before wiping it off. If you’re comfortable jacking up your car to get access to the underbelly, by all means, do so, but always do it carefully and on jack stands.

Select a reputable vehicle wash detergent. Never put dish soap on your paint since it might diminish its longevity. Wash in two buckets, one for soapy water and one for rinse water. Rinse your filthy sponge or microfiber wash mitt in the rinse water after each swipe of a dirty automobile to remove any grit and salt before dipping it in the soapy water.

If possible, wash your automobile within your garage. Reina says any water you sprinkle on your driveway might rapidly freeze, creating a slipping danger. You could sprinkle salt down to reduce the likelihood of freezing, but it would mean reintroducing salt to the automobile you’re removing it from.

Is It Possible to Wash My Car Without a Hose at Home?

Of course, it’s not always simple to have flowing water outdoors during the winter. In the case of my property, there are no hose bibs shielded from the weather in the garage, which means that running a garden hose might result in frozen pipes inside.

Numerous solutions are available on the market designed exclusively for vehicle cleaning without water. Swift Wipe Waterless Car Wash by Chemical Guys is one such product. This solution may be sprayed directly onto a filthy automobile and wiped clean, effectively removing grime, dust, and salt from painted surfaces. Although it is okay to use on glass and chrome, you should clean your windows with a specialist glass cleaner to avoid streaks.

However, it will do nothing to remove caked-on salt on the bottom. Therefore, if you lack access to a hose, it’s a good idea to occasionally spray down the underbelly of your vehicle at a self-serve car wash. Bring towels and immediately dry your vehicle after the wash to avoid your doors, trunk, windows, or fuel cap freezing shut.

Is It Possible to Wax Your Car in the Winter?

While waxing your automobile is an excellent method to maintain it, most car waxes become challenging to apply when temperatures exceed 55°F or 12°C. It’s recommended to thoroughly clean and wax your automobile before the arrival of winter weather to ensure that the paint is protected throughout the harsh months ahead.

Interior Winter Car Cleaning

There are a few reasons why keeping the inside of your automobile clean throughout the winter might be challenging. To begin, you’ll likely be driving your vehicle more often, which means dirt, markings, and stains will develop more frequently. Additionally, you’ll be dragging muddy shoes, wet pets, and similarly, saturated youngsters inside your vehicle, which may make it quite challenging to keep things looking fresh and tidy.

Conserve and preserve your automobile through winter by following our advice below.

Carpets and Upholstery Cleaning

Your damp and muddy shoes will have tracked a lot of dirt inside the vehicle during the winter. Even with vehicle mats and extreme caution, dirt and contaminants will find its way into the carpets, causing stains and odors.

To clean your carpets and upholstery fast, use a vacuum cleaner to remove any loose debris before using Simoniz Upholstery and Carpet Cleaner. Because dried-in dirt, such as mud, may be challenging to remove, you must use the brush head to scrape deeply into the fibers to remove stains.

Maintain the Smear on the Windscreen

Smears, grime, and fingerprints on the inside of your windows may not seem like a huge deal, but when the sun shines low in the sky on a winter morning, harmful glare may impair your ability to drive safely.

Wipe the interior and exterior glass carefully with Glass Cleaner and a soft microfiber cloth to remove streaks and dirt that might create glare and visibility concerns.

Why It's Critical to Maintain a Clean Car During the Winter

On winter roads, your automobile will come into contact with salt, grit, and decaying leaves, all of which may adhere to the paintwork and create hazardous deposits. This results in the start of rust, which, if left uncontrolled, would eat away at your car’s exposed metals.

Maintaining a clean automobile in the winter is necessary not just for aesthetic and maintenance reasons; there is also a safety factor to consider.

For example, if your car’s glass is dusty and coated with tree sap or fallen leaves, it will limit your sight – especially while driving in the low winter light. Winter sun dazzle is more prevalent than summer sun dazzle since the sun is lower during peak driving hours. That is why it is critical to maintaining your windshield clean and smear-free (we would also suggest keeping a pair of sunglasses in case of an emergency).

Our Recommendation

As a car owner, only you know what is best for your car. If you can afford to get a car detailing, we highly recommend you do. It will make your car look amazing inside and out. Not only that, your car’s surface will continue to be protected from UV rays, dirt and debris over the next few months. If you’re on a budget or just need a quick clean then a car wash is the obvious choice. Just be aware that scratches can potentially occur even with an automatic car wash. We hope this article was helpful for you to make a decision towards how to clean your car. At PAD we offer top of the line car detailing service. If you’re interested in getting your car detailed you can view our services HERE. Check out our other blog articles to get updates and learn more about car detailing.