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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Curious what everyone does for car washes. Where I live in the Midwest we have two big car wash chains that offer unlimited washes but they are not touchless. They are basically a 200 foot long tunnel and brushes that wash your car and dry it at the end. All new acuras and honda vehicles get a three year wash package included when you buy the vehicles from our Acura/Honda dealer.

One of the detail shops I’ve used says don’t ever use a non-touchless car wash. Curious what all your thoughts are?
 

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2023 MDX Advance
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My wife is obsessed with keeping her MDX clean, as she was with the RX 350 before that. As such, she has an unlimited plan at a whirly soft cloth wash, and I just cringe and deal with it. Her RX was black, so the swirls were everywhere. Her MDX is white, so hoping the swirls are less noticeable.

Me, I hand wash my ride….or in the winter, take it through the touchless wash as necessary.

One positive of the auto washes is the undercarriage wash. Worth paying up for that, at least during the winter in snowy/icy climates where they treat the roads.
 

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It's pretty obvious - with touch washes you can get some swirls and such. But it is sure more convenient than spending an hour or more washing the car all the time. I'm not sure...do "touchless" car washes get the same level of cleaning though?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
My wife is obsessed with keeping her MDX clean, as she was with the RX 350 before that. As such, she has an unlimited plan at a whirly soft cloth wash, and I just cringe and deal with it. Her RX was black, so the swirls were everywhere. Her MDX is white, so hoping the swirls are less noticeable.

Me, I hand wash my ride….or in the winter, take it through the touchless wash as necessary.

One positive of the auto washes is the undercarriage wash. Worth paying up for that, at least during the winter in snowy/icy climates where they treat the roads.
Gosh my MDX is black 🚬☠☠🚬
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It's pretty obvious - with touch washes you can get some swirls and such. But it is sure more convenient than spending an hour or more washing the car all the time. I'm not sure...do "touchless" car washes get the same level of cleaning though?
I’m not sure about cleaning the touchless ones as honestly around here those are usually not staffed and open 24/7 where as the tunnel washes are staffed and usually open 8-8.
 

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I wash mine myself. As my MDX is aging (2014) I wash it less and less frequently - i.e. I don't obsess over it being a little dirty. Where I live (San Diego) it doesn't rain for much of the year and I leave the MDX parked outside all the time so it'll get dusty within a few days of washing then when overnight fog or morning dew hits - it's dirty looking again.

My color is Fathom Blue, which is a dark color, so the dirt shows - but not nearly as bad as it would if it was black. I had a black car once - never again. I couldn't keep it clean looking for more than a couple of days.

Since I don't obsess over washing it constantly it's not that big of a deal for me to do it myself. It probably takes me 1.5-2 hours to wash and hand wax it. I always wax it after washing it. But if I only do that about once every 2-3 months, it doesn't boil down to much if one thinks of it as time per week.

I don't clay the car, or put some multi-thousand dollar nano particle coating on it, or use a pressure washer, or a leaf blower to dry - I just use a hose, bucket, and microfiber towels. It's plenty good enough. My MDX is 9.5 years old, sits outside in the sun all the time, and still looks great.

Also - I don't really have a 'winter' here so I can wash it year round, in my shorts and t-shirt.

A neighbor had a black Tahoe. They kept it clean looking by having a detailer come to their house and wash it once a week or so. I don't imagine that was cheap but it kept it clean looking. This method gets the car hand washed, by someone else so the owner doesn't have to lift a finger, and avoids the car washes.

I wouldn't use a touch type carwash, especially if the color is black or another dark color - it's most likely going to put swirls and fine scratches all over it.

I even deny the 'free carwash' the dealer has the couple of times I've had my car to the dealer. I'd rather do it myself.
 

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I hand wash. In winter, watch the weather forecast and pick a 40 degree plus day, it’s not bad. Thinking about getting a hot water spigot put in outside. I had that at my previous house and it was really nice for those winter washes. Of course, make sure it is fully waxed before going into the winter season.
 

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I hand wash mine it’s black so it’s defiantly tough to keep up with in the winter. I also look for a warmer day to wash it, we live about 15 minutes away from a touch less wash and being in New Jersey I may take it there in January/February. I use p&s bead maker after I wash for drying aid as well as to keep the shine that helps with keeping dust and dirt off as I also work next to a concrete/ rock company and there is always dust everywhere.
Sky Cloud Car Wheel Plant

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On my 19 MDX (fathom blue pearl), I have PPF from the windshield forward and ceramic coating on the rest. On my RLX (brilliant red metallic), it is completely covered in PPF. It is self healing PPF and swirls/micro scratches disappear with time in the sun. I only hand wash both at home with a garden hose foam gun, ceramic booster soap, bucket with grit guard, microfiber mitt, and dry with a microfiber towel. I usually wait until it is about +50 degrees F and sunny before washing. It can feel almost like +60 degrees F in the sun with no wind; but, feel closer to freezing in the shade in the +5000 feet dry air of the high desert.

I have a whole house water softener and tankless water heater in the garage with hot and cold outlets. I attached a garden hose splitter in reverse (hot & cold from tankless into single hose). I can then adjust the water temp to luke warm instead of ice cold that normally come out my cold water tap in winter.

The PPF/ceramic coating results in a swirl free and almost factory new shine after a 30-40 min wash and dry. I wish my garage had a floor drain and I could wash anytime where it is much warmer during fall/winter months.
 

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Interesting
I wash mine myself. As my MDX is aging (2014) I wash it less and less frequently - i.e. I don't obsess over it being a little dirty. Where I live (San Diego) it doesn't rain for much of the year and I leave the MDX parked outside all the time so it'll get dusty within a few days of washing then when overnight fog or morning dew hits - it's dirty looking again.

My color is Fathom Blue, which is a dark color, so the dirt shows - but not nearly as bad as it would if it was black. I had a black car once - never again. I couldn't keep it clean looking for more than a couple of days.

Since I don't obsess over washing it constantly it's not that big of a deal for me to do it myself. It probably takes me 1.5-2 hours to wash and hand wax it. I always wax it after washing it. But if I only do that about once every 2-3 months, it doesn't boil down to much if one thinks of it as time per week.

I don't clay the car, or put some multi-thousand dollar nano particle coating on it, or use a pressure washer, or a leaf blower to dry - I just use a hose, bucket, and microfiber towels. It's plenty good enough. My MDX is 9.5 years old, sits outside in the sun all the time, and still looks great.

Also - I don't really have a 'winter' here so I can wash it year round, in my shorts and t-shirt.

A neighbor had a black Tahoe. They kept it clean looking by having a detailer come to their house and wash it once a week or so. I don't imagine that was cheap but it kept it clean looking. This method gets the car hand washed, by someone else so the owner doesn't have to lift a finger, and avoids the car washes.

I wouldn't use a touch type carwash, especially if the color is black or another dark color - it's most likely going to put swirls and fine scratches all over it.

I even deny the 'free carwash' the dealer has the couple of times I've had my car to the dealer. I'd rather do it myself.
mdxstang, Like Fine Wine, As You Age, You Get Better (and Smarter)!. Living in the NE (NY Suburbia) and despite the Less Severe Winter weather (so far), my old urges to regularly wash my Car has been usurped by Physical handicaps. Spinal Arthritis and other OA ladden joints can do that (IT SUX BIG TIME). I don't Clay Bar, or have any supplemental exterior polymers applied to this 22 MDX nor to my previous cars (owned or leased). In my more active days, with any allowable time and weather conditions, I too would use a Microfiber Sponge, a good quality car wash (Mothers or similar), typical Wheel cleaners, and either a microfiber drying towel or a Chammy cloth. Then a few times a year apply a coat of quality Wax and use a Spray wax (Turtle ICE , i.e) intermitently, and finish off the job with Armour All on the exterior rubber / plastic trim, and a quality Glass Cleaner (no Ammonia) & apply Tire Shine to the Tires. If time & and energy allowed, the interiro would be attacked as well.... cleaning the glass, applying Leather conditioners to the seats, and Armour all to the Dash & other trim. I too have a Fathom Blue Pearl exterior (22 MDX) [love the color as it really does reflect the Fathoms of the Sea], Grey leather interior. When I want to get rid of the winter salt and grime, I goto a Brushless Car Wash (Splash Car Wash) nearby me and then when I get home, I'll apply some finishing touches.

In the Old Days, If time allowed, I would pull out my Bom Box, play some of My Tunes, and spend the 2 hours or so, doing the Full Monte (Exterior & Interior) . Then, step back, light up a cigarette and admire my Work !! AHHHH The Good 'Ole Daze.
 

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2023 A-Spec / Had '06 Touring/Nav
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I do touchless about once a week or, so, to keep the heavier grime off but, it absolutely doesn't clean like hand washing. There needs to be physical contact to remove road film, etc. I'm dealing with black as well. Looks fantastic when clean. That lasts a couple days, maybe. My last MDX was also black and I really liked it. My other car was white and amazingly, rarely looked dirty. I'll give that strong consideration on the next one around 10 years from now! I have the surface sealed really well and PPF on the front. The touchless does a reasonable job for the couple months of crappy winter we have here in MI. Although, I think the average high temps in Jan have been around 45 degrees this year. Digging that! But, still too cold to hand wash outdoors for me!!
 

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I hand wash mine it’s black so it’s defiantly tough to keep up with in the winter. I also look for a warmer day to wash it, we live about 15 minutes away from a touch less wash and being in New Jersey I may take it there in January/February. I use p&s bead maker after I wash for drying aid as well as to keep the shine that helps with keeping dust and dirt off as I also work next to a concrete/ rock company and there is always dust everywhere. View attachment 123664
View attachment 123665
View attachment 123663
Lumberjack, That is a Real BOSS looking MDX !! Congrats. BTW, those pics look like a Long Island Neighborhood?
 

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Goes to show you that much of Suburbia in the Northeast looks very similar. I'm in Westchester County NY, and many neighborhoods look simar to that as well. Good Luck and don't drive too FAST in that Beast 🙂
 

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First and main rule of washing your car: DO NOT EVER go through an automatic car wash that is NOT completely touch free (avoid al "soft-touch", etc).

From there you can go as crazy as your imagination and budget would allow. For example, when I wash my car manually, I use a proper two bucket method and high end chemicals and accessories. I can spend as much as 3-4 hours in the washing bay for a full detail. But you do you.
 
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