Today’s subject at 4CarLovers is the drying step. This essential car wash process is usually overlooked. We should not forget that a good car wash might be totally ruined if the last step is skipped: the drying. What is the point of washing your car if it is all covered in water spots?
For a finish free of drops and water spots, the quality of the water used in the last stages, i.e. waxing and rinsing, is very important. For those final steps, most professional detailers and car washes -whether with automatic machines or with jet wash bays- use softened and demineralized water, that is, water free of limescale and mineral salts. That is exactly what we recommend as manufacturers of our own water treatment equipment for car wash installations in order to ensure top quality in water and its subsequent recycling.
Why do you still end up with water spots with this type of water if you don´t dry your car? Water spots are actually dust, dirt and pollution particles trapped inside water drops. Water evaporates but dirt from the environment and exhaust pipe residue remain suspended inside the drops; when they dry up, they leave a visible mark due to the dirt in them. Drops are very good at retaining dirt; a slight gust of wind is enough to make dust stick to them.
The solution is as simple as drying your car immediately after washing it. Most automatic car wash equipment (rollovers and tunnels) includes a drying step. If you are a jet wash enthusiast, your car can also be dried on the rollover. Car washes offering complete automatic and manual services usually have a drying program for a finishing touch on the rollover. And you can also use the ISTOBAL hand-held dryers and paper and cloth dispensers for that perfect finish.
If letting your car dry in the air is bad enough, letting it dry while you drive is definitely worse. You are only making it easier for dirt to stick on the drops. And if you don’t dry your car properly, marks on windows and mirrors will be more noticeable. Bear in mind that water evaporates from mirrors much more slowly because they are protected from the air when you drive, which means they are also more exposed to any dirt in the environment. And be careful when you put the windows down right after washing your car! The window will get wet again when your lower it and when you close it, leaving watermarks on which dirt and dust are very likely to stick.
The drying phase is important all year round: for instance, in winter, any drops left may freeze and turn into ice on a very cold day. So there you go: if you want a spotless finish, don’t forget to dry your car properly at the car wash. Never skip drying to prevent water spots!