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How Often You Should Wash Your Car

Many people don’t realize that regular car washes do more than make your exterior shine. They also provide routine maintenance that lengthens the lifespan of your vehicle. 

Consider how your car is constantly exposed to dirt, dust, rocks, pollutants, tree sap, bugs, bird droppings, salt, and water. All these contaminants, if left on the surface and undercarriage of your vehicle, can cause serious issues—like paint damage, rust, and corrosion.

Most auto professionals agree that you should wash your car at least every two weeks and have a detail twice a year to keep your vehicle in ideal condition. However, every car owner has different circumstances—such as location, weather, storage, and more—that will affect how often they should be washing their vehicle.  


If you aren’t sure if you’re washing your car enough, take the following factors into consideration:



A car driving down a road in the middle of a forest.


The area you live in plays a huge role in determining how often you should wash your car. Heavily forested areas with an abundance of trees are prone to a large number of birds, bugs, and tree sap that can cause damage to your paint if left on your car’s surface. If you live near a beach or the ocean, your car is regularly exposed to sand, salt water, and humidity which can affect the exterior of your vehicle. 

Knowing what your vehicle is exposed to can help you determine how often you should wash your car. If your car regularly comes in contact with any of these harmful elements, consider washing your car frequently or around every two weeks.


Driving Distance and Frequency

Cars driving down a highway.


The distance and frequency you drive your vehicle can greatly affect how often you should wash your car.

If your vehicle spends most of its time sitting in a garage with only a handful of trips a week, it’s probably safe to wash your car less frequently—like once a month. However, most of us use our cars every day for trips to and from work, errands, and more.

The more often you drive your car, the more often your paint, exterior, and interior is exposed to dirt, dust, rocks, and other harmful elements. With an increase in time on the road, you should be making more trips to get your car washed or detailed to ensure your vehicle stays in top shape.


Weather and Climate

 A car going through a winter storm.


Weather and climate conditions affect your car more than you may think. Heat, cold, rain, snow, and other environmental factors can damage your vehicle—even if it isn’t immediate. 

Heat can soften the paint on the surface of your car, allowing small dirt particles to melt and scratch your paint. The cold of winter creates issues for your vehicle, as well. Areas prone to frequent snowfall often use road salt that can cause corrosion if not washed away from your car promptly. Salt exposure can cause rust and micro-scratches to the paint and undercarriage, permanently damaging your vehicle.

Also, many car owners may thank the rain for cleaning off their cars, but what they don’t realize is that rain carries damaging properties. Heavy rains cause water to collect on the surface of vehicles and trap contaminants, leading to rust and discoloration. If you live in an industrial area, the rain may also be contaminated with air pollutants that form acid rain. If your car is exposed to conditions like these, you should wash it frequently—like every two weeks.



 A car sitting outside a garage.


Do you store your car in a garage, on the street, under trees, or in your driveway? As we stated before, a lot of the damage done to your car on a regular basis is caused by exposure to the elements. Cars kept in relatively climate-controlled areas—such as a garage—won’t need to be washed as frequently as cars that are stored outside.

Protecting your vehicle whenever possible can help you maintain your car’s shine and preserve its longevity. If you leave your car in areas where exposure to contaminants is less controlled—like on the street or under a tree—you should consider washing it more frequently (about every two weeks).



 Large truck spinning tires through mud.


How you like your vehicle to look is also a huge factor when considering how often you should wash your car. Your car is a representation of you and your personality, so do you want your car to look showroom shiny with a sparkling exterior? Or are you okay with a little bit of dirt and clutter? 

Remember: the better you want your car to look, the more often you should wash it!

Want to go the extra mile in keeping your car clean, shiny, and protected? Consider getting a professional detail performed on the interior and exterior twice a year so you can preserve your vehicle’s longevity and resale value. 


Ready to have that new car feeling again? Schedule a detail!


At Premier, we believe our mission is to create happiness through professional detailing and our purpose is to exhibit a philosophy of servanthood! If you have any questions, feel free to contact us or visit our website. Don’t forget to check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram as well!

Read more from our blog.

That's why, at Premier, you’ll get more than just exceptional service for your car.

You’ll drive away happy knowing you’re also valued and a huge part of supporting and celebrating others.

If you’re ready to restore, protect, or style your car—book an auto detailing service in Lafayette, Indiana or Kokomo, Indiana. Our professionally trained staff (and satisfaction guarantee) promise that you’ll be impressed with our attention to detail and blown away with the final results.

* There will be an additional charge of $50 for Iron Decontamination. If your vehicle has tar, overspray, or road paint on it, we will provide a custom quote for removal.

* Removing stains is an intricate service, and while we always try to do everything possible to remove stains, we cannot guarantee full stain removal. In the event a stain cannot be fully removed, we will try to attenuate it as much as possible.

* Headliners are extremely delicate. Excessive cleaning and wetting of the headliner can cause it to fail, so excessive soiling may not be able to be removed.


Ceramic Wash, Clay, and Seal

* These prices are based on a vehicle in average condition. For a more accurate quote, pictures or a detailer’s estimate may be needed to see if your vehicle qualifies for this price.


Full Detail

* These prices are based on a vehicle in average condition. For a more accurate quote, pictures or a detailer’s estimate may be needed to see if your vehicle qualifies for this price.


Interior Detail

* These prices are based on a vehicle in average condition. For a more accurate quote, pictures or a detailer’s estimate may be needed to see if your vehicle qualifies for this price.

*The paint polish is not intended to remove any deep paint defects. It is only intended to enhance gloss and deep clean the paint in preparation for the coating application. Additional paint correction services can be quoted at an additional charge.

Because we value you and your vehicle as much as you do, we recommend following a maintenance protocol after the initial curing time of your ceramic coatings application.

This maintenance plan will keep your warranty intact and allow you to enjoy a smooth, glass-like finish for years to come.

A professional hand wash—with a specialized ceramic coatings approved cleaning agent—is recommended every week to every other week. As a ceramic coatings VIP, you'll receive a $20 discount on all hand washes.

Pricing: Call for Details

Why is ceramic coating the most elite paint protection product on the market?

Premier ceramic coating offers nano-ceramic compounds that provide the maximum level of slickness, protection, and durability.

A normal clear coat has hardness between 2H and 4H. However, ceramic coatings have a hardness above 9H. This shield is the hardest paint coating on the market today and prevents minor scratches to your clearcoat and acts as a sacrificial layer.

Think of ceramic coatings as an additional clear coat layer, only a lot harder. All of this allows for more peace of mind and a fuller enjoyment of your vehicle, even in harsh environments.

Surface Scratches

UV Protection


No-Bond Surface


Permanent Protection

* We protect all plastics, vinyl, leather, Alcantara, carpet, and upholstery to help repel dirt, dust, and stains. We do not coat interior glass as it will cause fogging issues.

* A new tint can be applied to driver and passenger windows to match other factory-tinted windows on SUVs and trucks.