How To Avoid Water Spots After Washing Car

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How to avoid water spots after washing cars? Is that even possible? Well, yes, it is possible, and there are ways to achieve that.

Some people do not bother about the water drops that are left on their car after washing; they see it as a norm and won’t bother to dry them off.

When those drops dry up, most time, they leave visible spots on the car’s body, and that’s when it becomes a concern to certain people.

Interestingly, there are ways to prevent water spots from appearing on your car paint after you have washed the car. This is usually applicable when you do the washing yourself. Arguably, the car wash guys know to prevent such spots, so let’s tell you how to do that too!

What Happens When You Don’t Dry Your Car Properly After Washing?

When car owners attempt to carry out detailing-related tasks, many of them end up messing up their cars instead of making it appear as detailed as they want.

Washing the car isn’t a difficult task; anyone can do that. But when it comes to washing a car to expose its bright colors and waxing, more effort is required.

After you have finished washing the car and rinse with clean water, you’ll find droplets of water here and there. These droplets of water may slide and fall if your car paint is oily/slippery.

However, not all of them will slide off, there’d still be a few left, and they’ll actually dry up. When they dry up, they leave spots on the paint, and this can be quite messy.

So, when you do not dry your car correctly after washing, it causes water spots to appear on the paint, which dents the appearance of the vehicle, and you may not like it. Hence, here’s how to avoid water spots after washing car.

Read Also: Is It Safe To Spray Your Engine With Water?

How To Avoid Water Spots After Washing Car

How To Wash A Car To Avoid Water Spots

These tips apply to all types and models of cars, and they are totally safe to practice every time you wash the car.

1. Use distilled water to wash your car regularly

One of the commonest reasons why water spots appear on your car’s finish after each wash is because you’re using hard water.

When the water you’re using to wash the car contains some mineral content, there’s every tendency that you’ll have to deal with water beads after washing the car.

In contrast, when you use distilled water to wash your car, there’s almost nothing to worry about. While distilled water is the safest to use when washing a car, you should avoid washing the car under the sun; it can cause droplets to dry up too quickly and form spots on your finish.

2. Keep away from the rain

As funny as it may appear, some people do wash their car in the rain. This is not advisable if you really do not want to avoid water spots after washing.

Maybe you’re driving home when it is starting raining, and you decide to wait in the rain to wash your car; apparently, this act will leave some spots on your finish.

More so, since the car is hot, the droplets can quickly dry up to leave spots all over. Furthermore, just you’re expected to watch out for the rain (especially late night rain), also watch out for sprinklers.

When you park your car beside a lawn, the lawn keeper, when sprinkling water on the lawn, can mistakenly sprinkle your vehicle.

Since you’re not close to your car, these spots can dry or even etch; therefore distorting your car finish. You don’t want this to happen, right? What are the solutions?

After washing and drying up your car, use a car cover or tarpaulin to protect the car; or, if you have a garage, simply drive the car into the garage; this will prevent any external causes of water spots on a car.

Also, do not park close to lawns on in the open, and before you sleep at night, cover the car to protect it from midnight downpour (especially in the rainy seasons). There are other ways to avoid water spots on your car after washing.

3. Use microfibers towels to dry the car after a wash

Since you’re looking for how to avoid water spots after washing cars, this tip is among the most important ones you should practice.

Immediately after rinsing the car with clean (distilled) water, use a microfiber towel, and wipe down the body. This will dry the droplets that are liable to form the water spots when they dry up.

With your microfiber towel, wipe every part of the car, from the body panels to the windows, side mirrors, as well as all the nooks and cranny. Ensure that your vehicle is totally dry without any visible droplet.

Why should you use a microfiber towel?

Typically, microfiber towels are smoother than any other clothe / rag you could think to use. They will easily remove leftover lint and dry up water from the car’s body.

When you use a bath towel or paper towel, there’s a possibility that you’ll see some furs from the towel on your car’s body after the cleaning.

Read Also: Is It Good to Wash A Car Engine While Its Hot?

4. Don’t wash under the sun

When you notice the sun is high on the sky and the rays are already scorching your skin, don’t wash your car outside under such a condition.

Understandably, you want the sun to shine on your car after wash to expose its shininess, but you can wash the car under a shade, dry it up, and then bring it out under the sun to see how it glow.

The sun will heat the car’s body and cause bubbles or foams to dry up faster while you wash the car. When the suds (as a result of the cleaning agent you mixed with water) dry up quickly, it would require more effort to rinse them off your car’s body.

More so, if you do not properly rinse off these bubble stamps, they’ll leave visible dents on the car’s body. It would make it appear like you never washed the car.

So, what should you do?

Instead of washing the car at midday, wash it in the evening when the sun is down. If you must wash the car during the midday, then you should wash under a shade to avoid direct sunlight shining on the car as you wash.

This also applies when waxing a car; you shouldn’t apply wax on your car under the sun. Instead, drive the car into a garage or a good shade that covers the entire vehicle, then you can apply the wax.

5. Use vinegar on stubborn water spots

If you are trying to deal with already existing water spots on your car’s body, one of the reliable ways to get rid of them is by using vinegar. There are different types of car water spots; however, when you use white vinegar, you can clear them all.

This tip comes in handy when you can see spots on your car’s body, and they wouldn’t clean even after several washes. Many car detailing experts recommend the use of vinegar for car detailing and removal of stubborn water spots.

Also, you can use vinegar if your car was splashed with dirty water, and the stains won’t clean when you wash with regular car shampoo. There’s no special method of applying vinegar to your car surface; simply follow the instruction that comes along with the vinegar you bought.

Feel free to use vinegar solution on your car windows; it is safe and would clean the windows more efficiently than any other cleaner. Remember to apply with a microfiber towel or a detailing clay.

How To Wash A Car To Avoid Water Spots

What Happens When You Don’t Dry Your Car Properly After Washing

You will need the following things:

  • Clean, soft water (preferably distilled water)
  • A cleaning agent (shampoo)
  • Vinegar
  • A smooth cleaning rag (preferably a microfiber towel)
  • Make water available and within reach

If you plan to use a water jet (pressure washer) to rinse the car, that’s okay, but you should stay at a distance and do not spray at the higher psi.

Here are the steps to wash the car:

  • Wet the car with water
  • Scrub the body with a damp rag or microfiber
  • Focus a bit on areas with existing water spots
  • After washing a side of the car, rinse it immediately before moving to another side. Follow this pattern until you wash the enter body.
  • Dry with a microfiber towel to avoid spots

Notes: do not wash under the sun to avoid foams drying up too quickly before you rinse the car. Use vinegar mixed with distilled water to clean up stubborn water spots.

Read Also: How to Protect Your Car From Sun in Open Parking


The tips provided in this article are how to avoid water spots after washing cars. They also apply when detailing or waxing your car.

This article is for information purposes only, and all the solutions provided here are safe to practice irrespective of the car model or type.

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