Expert reveals how to use self-service car wash without ruining your ride


‘I’m usually about 8 minutes and done’: Expert reveals how to use self-service car wash without ruining your ride

‘I do mine like I’m racing the clock.’


Maya Wray


Posted on Apr 1, 2024   Updated on Apr 1, 2024, 9:34 am CDT

A Brisbane, Australia-based car detailer has gone viral on TikTok after showing drivers how to clean up their vehicles without damaging them—all in under 10 minutes.

User @jdautodetailin confessed in his viral video that he did not have as much time as he preferred to clean his own car, since he spent the majority of his time cleaning other people’s vehicles for a living. However, he took advantage of a free Friday night before the Easter holidays to show viewers his quick five-step process to a safe self-car wash, in a TikTok that has been viewed 5.1 million times as of Monday.

Demonstrating on a white Volkswagen Golf R, the TikToker suggested starting with the tires, noting in his video that tire cleaner should not touch car paint. Fortunately, there’s an easy way to avoid that. 

“What you do is spray it on the ground. As you can see, the tire cleaner is the green one and the pre-soak is the pink one,” he demonstrated, aiming the nozzle at the pavement. Waiting a couple of seconds after selecting pre-soak for the color to change will help ensure you don’t unnecessarily ruin your paint job, he explained. 

After liberally dousing the car with pre-soak, @jdautodetailin introduced “the most controversial step” in the car washing process: The foaming brush.

“Get your foaming brush, twist it so it’s flat, and use the soap to rinse it out,” he told viewers. 

Simply put, you don’t know where the foaming brush has been. 

“You don’t know who’s used this brush before you,” @jdautodetailin pointed out. “People come through with their four-wheel drives, with rocks and mud and all sorts of things all over it, so you just want to rinse it out.”

Only use the foaming brush on the car’s wheels, he explained, scrubbing all four tires before rinsing the car down. 

Splatter waxing is “arguably the best part” of washing one’s car, according to @jdautodetailin. Once he coated the car in bubblegum pink wax, he started another rinse.  

@jdautodetailin How to use the self serve car wash safely! #detailing #xyzbca #brisbane #carwash #foryou ♬ original sound – jdautodetailin

Pulling a drying cloth from the trunk of the car, he announced that drying was the last step. After gently towel drying the roof of the car, he moved on to the rear windshield, advising viewers that drying their vehicles by hand was the safest practice in a self-serve car wash. 

“Took me 10 minutes,” he calculated at the end of his TikTok. “That’s how a professional detailer uses a self-serve car wash.”

Viewers were skeptical of @jdautodetailin’s relaxed state as he washed his car. “When I use this machine it’s like a trolley dash,” @joethec joked. 

“I am running around like a chicken with their head cut off so i dont run out of time bc i brought just enough coins,” @…martitaa concurred. 

The Daily Dot reached out to @jdautodetailin via email.

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*First Published: Apr 1, 2024, 2:00 pm CDT