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Debunking 6 Common
Car Wash Myths

Mister experts clear the air on vehicle care misconceptions


If you have asked yourself where, how, or even why you should wash your car, you are not alone. We are used to hearing indifference or confusion about the value of a consistent, quality car wash. Mister has been in the business of SHINE for over 25 years. In that time, we have perfected our systems to achieve a wash we are proud of, and we aim to spread the truth about how and why caring for your car matters. 

These are the 6 most common myths we hear about car washes, and what our experts have to say about them. 

More than meets the eye

MYTH 1: If my car looks clean, I don’t need to wash it

BUSTED: Unseen soils can cause long-term damage 

Our experts say: pollen, dust, road grime, and salt – these elements are rough on your car. Salt left unattended will begin to rust your car’s frame and fade your paint. Only an undercarriage spray can thoroughly clean those hard-to-reach areas.  

MYTH 2: A touchless wash is better for my car’s finish

BUSTED: More chemicals, more problems

Our experts say: A no-friction wash uses harsher chemicals to achieve the same clean. The heightened chemistry can dry out plastic and rubber and can begin to break down the clear coat on your exterior. Mister’s rotating cloth wraps are designed to remove debris gently. 

Method matters

MYTH 3: It looks like rain – that should do the trick

BUSTED: Rainwater will do little more than remove surface dirt 

Our experts say: Anything that has been resting on your car’s surface is statically attached to that surface, and simple water will not remove it. Mister uses tailored cleansers specifically designed to penetrate the grime and lift it from the surface. The second part of the process is to suspend those raised soils in water so it can run off the car during the rinse. 

MYTH 4: I can do the same thing at home with store bought soap

BUSTED: The wrong materials and applications can do more harm than good 

Our experts say: Think of how your hands feel after you wash the dishes— clean but stripped—your skin will renew itself and your car cannot. To extend the life of your car’s surface, you want to use the right products in the right way. Automotive soaps can strip wax from the vehicle or not do the job at all. Besides, anything you wash in your driveway will end up in community water ways, eventually polluting the environment. 

Protect and shine

MYTH 5: I don’t need to wash my car often

BUSTED: The more you wash, the more your car benefits from the layers of protectant

Our experts say: Think of it like washing your hair. The longer you go in between, the more chemicals and friction it takes to clean it. Washing regularly gives your car a better chance of being completely clean and prepared for the next stage of protectants to adhere or bond to the surface. 

MYTH 6: All I need is a wash, forget the wax

BUSTED: Wax helps to protect your vehicle for the road 

Our experts say: Mister’s patented HotShine® Carnauba Wax not only makes your paint appear shinier, but also offers protection from the elements. As you wash your car more often, the layers of wax provide a stronger line of defense from dirt and seal in the shine. 

You love your car—that is why you are doing your research about why, how, and where to wash. We are continually optimizing and perfecting our process to ensure safety, quality, consistency, and efficiency are part of every step of the wash in all 390+ of our locations. 

We invest in SHINE – now it’s your turn. Are you a member? If so, return often! If not, sign up for a membership today and make the choice to care for your car the way only you can.