Washing your car in cold weather?
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This is a discussion on Washing your car in cold weather? within the Detailing Forum forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; Newbie question here, but i just got a 06 STI silver anyway its pretty dirty from driving it home threw ...

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    Washing your car in cold weather?

    Newbie question here, but i just got a 06 STI silver anyway its pretty dirty from driving it home threw some snow and crap and where I live they salt like crazy mixed with dirt i think... Anyway its gonna be 34-36 degrees tomorrow but sunny I was thinking of washing it so I can just get it clean cause the whole week its gonna be in the 20's with snow and what not, is it ok to wash it myself in 36 degree weather cause i really dont want to take it to a carwash? Thanks
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    DUB
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    What exactly are you worried about?

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    Registered User branemaniac's Avatar
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    U wash the hell outta that car! lol
    You will be cold, but its gonna be fine. As long as you dont get water in the engine bay (intake mostly) and it freezes to not let parts move when they are supposed to...its all good in the hood. I have personally washed my car a couple of times in the past few days for the insurance inspector to view my hail dents...
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    Registered User vecdran's Avatar
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    I've washed my car in freezing weather. Just use lots of hot water If you can hook your hose up to warm water, even better.
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    Registered User teflon_jones's Avatar
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    Simple solution: Don't wash it. My car hasn't been washed since I bought it last April. It goes just as fast whether it's dirty or clean, and washing it doesn't make it last any longer, in most cases it's just going to hurt the car by driving stuff into cracks and crevices where it wasn't meant to go.
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    Quote Originally Posted by teflon_jones View Post
    Simple solution: Don't wash it.
    But then it wont look pretty.

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    Hi mate

    yes you can wash your car in that temprature, just make sure you dont slip on the ice when the water falls off the car



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    Just washed mine yesterday - it was in the low 40s with a pretty good breeze. Car wise it should not be a problem. As stated above keep water out of the engine bay when near or below freezing. I make it much more tolerable by wearing rain pants and rubber boots. I'll might add a rain jacket if is in the 30's and windy. Dry is warmer than wet.


    When it is warmer I keep the WRX engine bay obsessively clean. Have a look: Pics
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    I've always been a fan of pressure washing salt off as soon as possible even though it is arguably worse. I spray the underbody and suspension as much as possible without getting up into the engine area. If you get the right distance from the paint and use a pattern so you don't miss anything you can do a passable job on the topside. Dry your windows and locks etc. if it is going to freeze soon. In the spring I drive it up on ramps and hit the underside with simple green and even scrub some stuff.

    Quote Originally Posted by 04.SPT.WRX View Post
    Just washed mine yesterday - it was in the low 40s with a pretty good breeze. Car wise it should not be a problem. As stated above keep water out of the engine bay when near or below freezing. I make it much more tolerable by wearing rain pants and rubber boots. I'll might add a rain jacket if is in the 30's and windy. Dry is warmer than wet.


    When it is warmer I keep the WRX engine bay obsessively clean. Have a look: Pics
    I wouldn't even have a clue how to get my engine bay looking like that. Sweet. I actually ended up driving around with a chipmonk's nest under there for who knows how long.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DUB View Post
    But then it wont look pretty.
    It still looks pretty, just not quite as pretty as it could. And it goes just as fast, which is the most important part to me. Oh, and I don't freeze my @$$ off washing it either. I never use automatic car washes so I'd be standing out in the freezing cold. I'm old, no thanks!
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    Registered User drummerboy's Avatar
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    how about a touchless carwash? it doesn't get it as clean as a handwash, but the majority of things you don't want on the car gets cleaned off.

    tons of salt is used up here and its always below freezing (usually) so that's the only way to go for me.
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    Registered User teflon_jones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drummerboy View Post
    how about a touchless carwash? it doesn't get it as clean as a handwash, but the majority of things you don't want on the car gets cleaned off.

    tons of salt is used up here and its always below freezing (usually) so that's the only way to go for me.
    By touchless you mean the high pressure water only washes? I would never do one of those in the winter. The high pressure water is going to take all of that salt and drive it into every crevice on the car. It's the best way to promote rust/corrosion that I can possibly think of. Let's say you have a scratch in some galvanizing from bottoming out somewhere. That high pressure water alone is bad because it'll get into that crack, but combine it with the salt and you've just pushed a highly corrosive material into the scratch under high pressure.

    A lot of people are under the false impression that salt sitting on your car is going to cause a lot of corrosion. Yes, salt sitting on things like your exhaust and other non-painted or non-galvanized parts is going to cause corrosion a lot faster, but on anything painted or galvanized, the salt is going to do absolutely nothing.
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    Would Never, Ever Say Something Bad About an Admin's Mom SonicWagon's Avatar
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    so i think we have learned something teflon does not live somewhere where salt is used on the roads, you would have to be nuts not to wash the salt off your car in the winter.
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    Would Never, Ever Say Something Bad About an Admin's Mom SonicWagon's Avatar
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    what??? rinsing off your car might drive corrosion in small sectors but will save the majority.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SonicWagon View Post
    so i think we have learned something teflon does not live somewhere where salt is used on the roads, you would have to be nuts not to wash the salt off your car in the winter.
    Obviously you didn't check my location, I live in an area that probably uses more salt than anywhere else in the country since we get a lot of icy mixes.

    Quote Originally Posted by SonicWagon View Post
    what??? rinsing off your car might drive corrosion in small sectors but will save the majority.
    Save it how? Please explain how salt sitting on painted or galvanized parts is going to corrode them.
    Scott
    Past Subies - '11 STI Limited stage 1+ and '04 STi stage 2+
    '13 Wrangler Rubicon - custom front bumper w/12k lb winch & off-road lights, skid plates, diff guards, etc.
    '04 Porsche 911 Turbo GT2 clone 600 HP/TQ
    '77 F-150 heavily modded for off-roading

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