Man washing his car

When Should I Wash My Car?

Why Car Washes are Important

When was the last time you washed your car? If it has been a while, or perhaps you don’t remember, you’ll want to get your vehicle’s exterior cleaned when you can. Wondering when you should wash your car? On average, drivers should expect to get a car wash once every two weeks. Of course, you may need to clean it more frequently if you park your car outdoors, drive off-road, or live in an area that uses road salt or is near the ocean. So, why should you stick to the two-week rule? Here are a few reasons why car washes are more important than they seem.

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Environmental Debris and UV Rays on Vehicles

There are many things that can impact the exterior of your car. First, environmental debris is everywhere. Dirt and bugs will collide with your car as you travel and can leave behind some unappealing residue. If you live in an area that has salt on the road, in the air, or in water, you may notice some paint damage and/or rust later if it isn’t cleaned off. Even tree sap and bird droppings can eat away at your paint and leave ugly stains behind, especially if they are given enough time to dry.

[ READ MORE: How Road Salt Can Damage Your Car ]

Also, if you can help it, it’s recommended to store your car indoors when not in use, such as your garage. UV rays from the sun can fade the paint on your car over time. If you have to park your car outside and would like to protect its color as much as you can, consider a car cover or regular car waxing.

Red car going through an automatic car wash

Impact on Trade-In Value

Not only will keeping your car’s exterior look clean be more eye-catching for you, but it will help make it more eye-catching for buyers as well. If you plan on trading it in later on, you’ll want to take care of its exterior to help maximize its trade-in value. For example, let’s say two vehicles of the exact same make, model, year, trim, mileage, and mechanical condition are being brought to a dealership for a trade-in value appraisal. The exterior for car A is dirty, has rust, and is riddled with dead bugs. Meanwhile, car B was cleaned regularly and is shinier, cleaner, and has less paint damage. In this scenario, the owner of car B will receive a higher trade-in value than the owner of car A.

[ READ MORE: Tips for Maximizing Your Car’s Trade-In Value ]

Ready to see what your car is worth? Value your trade with our easy and quick online form here! We will be happy to help you get the most out of your current car.