7 Simple Reasons Why A Hand Wash Is Better Than Car Wash

It has been debated whether hand washing is better than a car wash for cleaning your car.

Hand washing involves manual washing, which some people may not have the time for, making them prefer quick and low-effort cleaning at the car wash.

However, that isn’t all.

Quick Answer

As a whole, a hand wash is better than a car wash because you get to control how your car gets washed; it’s gentle, and it does less damage to your vehicle than a car wash. 

While you may want to take the easy way out, choosing what’s best for your car is most important.

If you still feel confused about what to go for, read this article to learn why a hand wash is better than a car wash. 

Is Hand Wash Better Than Car Wash?

Washing your car is important, and the washing strategy you choose is crucial.

Both hand wash and car wash have their benefits, and people choose either due to different reasons.

But if you need help deciding which one to adopt for your car, you’re at the right place.

As a general rule, hand wash is better than car wash due to the following reasons:

  • More attention to details
  • No cleaning chemicals
  • Complete drying
  • Lowers chances of body damage
  • Low cost
  • Protects the paint
  • Less chance of tool malfunction

If you look beyond the time it’ll take you to wash your car manually, you’ll realize that it’s a better option.

While it might be effort and time-consuming, hand wash is better because:

More Attention To Details

Hand washing your car is more thorough than a car wash.

You have the time to dedicate to every nook and cranny of the vehicle to wash them.

Since you are the car owner, you can take your time to ensure that no dirt or grime is left on the car.

You can see where the bird poop, road oil, or brake dirt are hanging, and you will do a better job of getting it off.

However, it is essential to use car wash shampoo or soap to clean your car thoroughly without causing any damage.

No Cleaning Chemicals

Many car washes use harsh chemicals in their washing agent.

This is because they have to get the grime and dirt off the car, and these chemicals can strip off the dirt.

However, while they can remove the dirt from your vehicle, they can be damaging.

If you wash your car yourself, you won’t need to use any dissolving chemicals, but instead, you’ll scrub gently till the dirt gets off.

However, on your own, you should ensure you use soaps that are chemical-free as well. 

Complete Drying

Car washes hardly dry your car completely after a wash.

They can try, but you may notice streaks and remnants on your car.

When you wash your car, you can see the areas you missed when drying, and you can remedy that.

As a result, you reduce mineral deposits that lead to water marks and streaks on your car.

Furthermore, you are more likely to dry your car gentler after a hand wash than at a car wash.

You can do it the touchless way using an air dryer or a microfiber cloth to dry it completely. 

Lowers Chances Of Body Damage

Hand wash is more gentle than a car wash and will lower the chances of body damage.

For example, the harsh chemicals in the wash soap at car washes may contain abrasives and stripping agents that can ruin your car’s coating and paint.

Furthermore, the car wash can miss some dirt on your car that may stick to your car and be harder to remove.

There’s also the problem with water spots that can lead to etching and affect the clear coat.

In addition, the washing equipment may be harsh and leave swirl marks on your car.

However, these chances are lower because you’re usually more careful with washing, rinsing, and drying.

Low Cost

Hand wash is more low-cost than a car wash.

Once you have your two buckets, microfiber cloth, washing mitts, car wash shampoo, car wax, detailing clay, pressure sprayer, and wipes, you are set to wash your car for a while until you need to replace any. 

Even the basic cleaning tools are adequate to some extent.

You only have to take them out and spend some time washing them when your car is dirty.

That way, you can save money from frequent car wash visits.

Protects The Paint

Hand washing your car protects your car’s paint’s lifespan more than using a car wash.

You get to determine which gentle washing soap to use on your car with lubricants that won’t be harsh on your paint. 

Furthermore, you can wash, rinse, and dry gently to ensure the paint is good.

Lastly, you can decide whether to wax your car or apply extra protection on the paint when you’re done washing.

Less Chance Of Tool Malfunction

You can hardly tell the state of the equipment at the car wash.

Some of them might be old and may scratch or dent your car.

At least with your cleaning tools at home, you can tell when you need to replace some of them, and you actually do. 

Do Hand Car Washes Damage Paint?

Some people think that hand car washes damage paint.

Therefore, they prefer other alternatives they believe are better, but they couldn’t be any more wrong.

Quick Answer

As a general rule, it is highly unlikely for hand car washes to damage paint as long as the proper technique and equipment are put to use. 

Whether your paint will look good depends on the soap, washing supplies, and how gentle you are.

For starters, you shouldn’t use soaps that have abrasives or are unsuitable for washing cars.

Then, ensure you use a soft mitt to wash off the dirt, and dry water off the car completely using a microfiber cloth or air dryer. 


Washing your car with a hand wash will do your car better than a car wash.

You get to control what to wash with and how to wash and dry your car.

However, you should also wash your car with care to prevent damage to the car paint.

Key Takeaways:

  • Hand washing is better than a car wash,
  • With hand washing you can dry your car better than a car wash and protect the paint,
  • You have more control over what happens to your car with hand wash than with car wash.








Jan-Lucas Ganssauge
Jan-Lucas Ganssauge