Auto Car Wash Options

My hubby took his car through an automatic car wash yesterday. It definitely needed to be washed, as we’ve had some amount of snow here, and there was road salt all over the car. And he wasn’t about to wash it by hand in below-freezing temps!

At the car wash, there was one charge for a basic wash, and then there were options available. He paid an extra $2.00 for an under-carriage wash, and $2.00 extra for liquid wax. But then he got to wondering if these additional options are really worth the added cost.

So I bring the question to you good folks. Are these added options worth it? Are they worth anything at all?


If your concern is salt, the undercarriage wash is probably a good idea, because it’s supposed to spray up under the car, where the stuff you really don’t want rusting is located.

I run through what I call the “Glorified $8 Rinse-Off” this time of year when it’s covered in grime and salt. It needs it now, but it started snowing again today, and the roads are still all salty and I didn’t think it was worth it yet.

I always get the undercarriage rinse, but never the wax. I drive into the wash bay very slowly, so it gets a good soaking.

I really like the automatic car wash near my house. It is a dedicated wash and much bigger than the ones you find at gas stations. I usually get the basic wash but occasionally I will get the Gold package which includes an undercarriage wash and spray wax among other things. I can’t say if it is the best thing ever but it look totally clean after that and water beads on the car for a good while. When you order the Gold, the attendants spend a good while spraying stuff one the car so I know they are doing something differently.