Spring is here…so is the pollen. My favorite thing to do is clean my car. While that sounds strange in general, there is nothing better than the smell of a clean car.

TikTok is currently trending with car detailing videos. So far, over 5.7 billion views have been recorded on the platform for videos showing users how to maintain their vehicles. UK leasing company Nationwide Vehicle Contracts has revealed its top tips on how to clean your vehicle at home, as well as the mistakes to avoid this spring.

We decided to talk about what not to do. Check out these 5 most common mistakes many people make including North Carolina residents. By avoiding these mistakes, you can drive better, protect your car better and enjoy having a clean car. Also, enjoy the pollen-inspired reel I made. Happy Spring!

  • Do NOT use washing up liquid or kitchen detergents to wash your vehicle

    In detergents, strong chemicals are used to break down grease and stains, not to clean your vehicle. The wax and protective coat on your vehicle will wear away if you use this frequently. Use car-specific shampoos and don’t forget the headlamps, wing mirrors, windows, and windscreens.

  • Do NOT use a metal scourer or an abrasive sponge to clean your vehicle

    The rough surface of kitchen sponges can easily leave your vehicle with lots of scratches. Instead, we recommend a microfiber mitt or sponge.

  • Do NOT clean your vehicle in direct sunlight

    High temperatures and direct sunlight can leave pesky watermarks on your vehicle. As a result, the heat will speed up the drying process when you apply soap, making it more difficult to rinse off. You will have to adapt your technique if you can’t avoid washing your car in direct sunlight. That said, never wax or polish your car in direct sunlight, always wait for a cooler part of the day or place your vehicle in shade.

  • Do NOT wait to clean bird poop from your vehicle's paintwork

    Bird poop contains a high pH level and can stain and damage your vehicle’s paintwork. It is imperative to remove any droppings as soon as possible, regardless of when your car is washed. Do not try to scrape off dried droppings as this could lead to even more damage. Rather, use your regular car shampoo and hot water to soften the dirt so it can be easily removed.

  • Do NOT use automatic car washes

    Automatic car washes may seem convenient, but they can actually damage your car’s paintwork. In particular, this is true for older machines with stiff nylon brushes. Brushes that are too stiff, as well as dirt and debris from other vehicles, can scratch your vehicle. Your vehicle’s paintwork may fade and appear dull over time as a result of this. Changing this professionally can result in a hefty bill, so we recommend washing your vehicle by hand!

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