Washing your own car doesn’t have to be difficult, as long as you have the right stuff to do the job. Frequent car washing is the best way to maintain your vehicle’s condition. No, a garden hose and some soap isn’t going to do the job! With that said, you also don’t have to spend an entire fortune to get a decent setup going. The products below will get you setup to wash and detail your car inside out.
Pressure washer – Karcher K1700 Cube
One of the key’s to a good car wash. The Karcher K1700 Cube is a great unit that can handle pretty much anything you want to throw at it. It doesn’t come with a foam cannon but this is an easy addon.
Foam Cannon – TriNova Foam Gun
A foam cannon will get you that nice thick layer of foam soap so you can get right to washing your car rather than using a bucket full of soap for the whole car. The TriNova foam gun is one of the best and most reliable ones out there.
Wash Mitts – Chemical Guys Microfiber Wash mitts
Wash mitts are important but like microfiber clothes, anything decent will do the job well. I choose Chemical Guys micorofiber wash mitts because they are readily available, decent and don’t cost an arm and a leg.
Heavier cleaning – Meguiar’s Super Degreaser
There will come a time when you will need to do some heavy cleaning, maybe the car is dirtier than you thought or maybe you have to strip remaining wax off of it. Please do not use tricks like showering the car with Dawn, instead use a degreaser cleaner. I prefer Meguiar’s Super Degreaser which is also incredible for things like engine cleaning and tire cleaning.
Soap – Chemical Guys Mr. Pink Super Suds
A good soap is probably the most important part of the wash! Chemical Guys Mr Pink Super Suds does a fantastic job of combining all the right components. It has an excellent amount of lubrication and it’s always available a solid price. This is one of the few categories where I would tell you to focus on price point, as long as you are getting a PH neutral product.
RInseless wash – Armour Car Care Waterless Car Wash
If you are in a pinch, a rinseless wash is the way to go! I like Armour Car Care Waterless Car Wash kit as it’s a concentrate so you can make your own dilutions if you desire. This is handy for those days where you just need to get a quick was in without spending the time normally required for a full wash.
Spray wax – Turtle Wax T-477R ICE Spray Wax
Spray waxes are nice for many reasons but I love them as they are great for drying. You can get a lot of different versions of spray wax and they vary in their claims. The Turtle Wax ICE Spray wax is nice because it lasts a decent time, can be applied in direct sunlight and won’t stain black trim pieces. The last part is nice because you can use it to add protection to plastics or interior trim pieces.
Microfiber – Chemical Guys MIC 507 06 Professional Grade Premium Microfiber Towel
Absolutely necessary for any car wash. Whether you use them for cleaning tougher to reach areas or to properly dry off a vehicle. The Chemical Guys MIC 507 06 microfiber towel is nice, soft and fluffy. They also are free from anything other than microfiber and won’t scratch up your car.
Grit guards – Chemical Guys Cyclone Dirt Trap
Yes they are a necessity and yes they do work. You can get any ones you like, but the Chemical Guys Cyclone dirt trap does a slightly better job of grabbing the dirt and preventing it from rising up as you put the mitt back in.
Hair brush – Chemical Guys Boar’s Hair Brush
An optional piece, but a good hair brush will allow you to get into tougher spots such as around grill areas. You can get which ever one you can find that has real hair on it, preferably a tougher hair like boar hair. Chemical Guys have a boar hair brush that is cheap and does a wonderful job.
Polisher – DEWALT 7-Inch-9-Inch Variable Speed Car Buffer
If you want to get serious about detailing your vehicle, you will need a polisher. The DEWALT 7”/9” variable speed car buffer will get in the door, for a mid level buffer for a introductory price. Buffing or polishing a vehicle will allow you to make that wash perfect as you can remove things like small scratches and oxidation.
Vacuum – Rigid WD4070 Power Vac
An obvious necessity for car washing, get a good vacuum and make it a power vac. The Rigid WD4070 is one of the best and it’s a great choice with a decent amount of power in a package that you can still maneuver around easily.
Dryer – Worx Turbine 600 Leaf Blower
You can hand dry a vehicle or you can pick up a leaf blower and make this a much easier task! The Worx Turbine 600 Leaf blower offers a great amount of power and honestly does the job better than those dedicated car dryers which are almost double the price.