There are almost as many ways of washing a car as there are cars; however, the two-bucket method is by far one of the most popular. Briefly, one bucket is for soapy water and a second bucket is for clean water. After soaping up the car with water from the first bucket, use water from the second to clean off the suds.
Choosing the right bucket is an important and often-overlooked part of the process. The bucket needs to be big enough to comfortably soak a car wash mitt, sponge, cleaning cloth or rag and agitate it to pick up soapy water or shake free debris. The bucket also needs to be deep enough to hold a sufficient amount of water for the job. Our office always chooses buckets with comfortable handles, since bucketfuls of water are so heavy.
When preparing to wash a vehicle, it’s also important to choose the right soap. It should be strong enough to do the job well but gentle enough to preserve the finish on the paint job. Scent is definitely a consideration, with low-key scents preferred by most of our testers. Some of the stronger car wash soaps are heavily scented and those tend to be best for outdoor car washes.
Other important considerations include choosing a car wash mitt, sponge, cleaning cloth, or rag. While this is largely a matter of preference, the mitt tends to be the most gentle on the car while also delivering a robust amount of soapy water, resulting in an efficient car wash experience.
A thorough car wash typically wraps up with a good washing of the wheels and the glass, as well as a wipe-down of the interior.