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Old 12-03-2007, 01:50 PM   #1
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Car Wash

Hi Everyone,

I am a new owner of a beautiful '08 Sahara as of this weekend (first Jeep ever). At the dealership, they indicated that I should not run my soft-top, 2-full-door through an automatic car wash. As it is now winter-time in the midwest, I am not looking forward to washing it in the driveway in below-freezing weather.

Does anyone have any thoughts as to whether or not it would truly be a problem to run it through a car wash? I can imagine that a powerful water jet may blast it's way under/through a seal or two on occasion, but would that be causing permanent damage? I love my Wrangler and don't want to do it any harm, but is the dealership being too conservative?

Thanks for any input!

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Old 12-03-2007, 02:25 PM   #2
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Its a Jeep, you don't need to wash it.

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Old 12-03-2007, 02:31 PM   #3
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Don't know why they would tell you that. Sounds like stealership BS to me.
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Old 12-03-2007, 02:33 PM   #4
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It's about the brushes on the new paint, I used to work at a dealership that had an automatic, brush less car wash, we used it all the time, no worries!
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And the most important safety, I never put my booger hook on the bang switch unless I'm ready to fire.
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Old 12-03-2007, 03:14 PM   #5
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using a brush on new paint=swirls
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Old 12-03-2007, 03:33 PM   #6
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Use the Touch free ,that means look for the Water pressure system .
The one with the brushes are not good for new car paint.
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Old 12-03-2007, 03:36 PM   #7
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He indicated it was because of the soft top. That sounds like BS to me.

...and trees are far meaner to my paint than the swirl-o-matic car washes.
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Old 12-03-2007, 03:40 PM   #8
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Well, if the soft top leaks in a car wash, it'll leak in a hard rain while driving, and neither is acceptable. The other option is one of those drive in, you wash it places. It's much quicker than doing it in the driveway, but you can control exactly where the water goes. I've actually washed mine in those w/out the top & doors after I crunched a critter and it was stinkin up the ride!
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And the most important safety, I never put my booger hook on the bang switch unless I'm ready to fire.
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Old 12-03-2007, 03:58 PM   #9
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I run mine through the automatic car wash every week, never noticed any new marks on the windows or paint. But then again, I have so many scratches in my windows from trees, etc... i don't know that I'd notice.
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Old 12-03-2007, 06:51 PM   #10
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The reason they tell you to keep your soft top out of automatic car washes is not paint or leaking seals.. they are worried about yoru windows. Those plastic windows scratch and haze easily. Both the harsh solvents in their soap, and those brushes can damage them. I just got a brand new top and I am buying bestopp window cleaner and microfiber cloths to take care of my new windows.
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Old 12-04-2007, 06:27 PM   #11
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I have run my 08 with soft top and soft half doors thru the high pressure wash just ta see and if ya do it have some towels handy......its also very loud and a lil scarey when the high pressure hits the windows......g
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Old 12-05-2007, 06:44 AM   #12
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I have a stupid question. Please keep in mind I am a new owner. Should I remove my antenna before going through a car wash? I haven't used an automatic car wash yet. It seems to me doing so might bend the antenna, or at the very least the antenna might ding the paint while its being pounded by the car wash brushes?????
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Old 12-05-2007, 02:33 PM   #13
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Thanks!!!

Just wanted to thank everyone for their input. This is a really helpfuly site. It looks like I'm going to have to find a place to manually handwash the ol' Wrangler this winter - I'll attach pictures of my amputated frostbitten fingers.
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Old 12-05-2007, 02:55 PM   #14
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I have run my 08 with soft top and soft half doors thru the high pressure wash just ta see and if ya do it have some towels handy......its also very loud and a lil scarey when the high pressure hits the windows......g
x2 first time I done it I was like a scared hamster inside a cave i was moving my eyes side by side expecting for the soft top to collapse at any second..
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Old 12-06-2007, 09:19 AM   #15
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...and trees are far meaner to my paint than the swirl-o-matic car washes.
HA!!!


some will say the carwashes will f-up the windows. and if you look plenty of folks have hazy scratched up soft glass.

I tend to not run it through with brishes on the soft top, rather use the 30 quarters for2 min ones.
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Old 12-06-2007, 10:06 AM   #16
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DONT WASH IT!
haha j/k do w/e u want since its brand new u might want ot
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Old 12-08-2007, 07:50 AM   #17
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I used to work in a swirl-o-matic carwash when I was 16-18. As far as your antenna goes, you may be fine one time, and an automatic carwash may rip the darned thing off next time. The safest, best way to wash your car in the winter is to either go to a spray-it-yourself place or one of those new touchless automatic places.
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Old 12-08-2007, 02:17 PM   #18
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Just wanted to thank everyone for their input. This is a really helpfuly site. It looks like I'm going to have to find a place to manually handwash the ol' Wrangler this winter - I'll attach pictures of my amputated frostbitten fingers.
Just take the plastic window off
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Old 12-09-2007, 03:07 PM   #19
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This may sound a tad weird, but "I'm" hesitant about taking "my" 2008 Wrangler Freedom Top through a "car wash" (seriously considering a "you spray it" wash), because of the dripping I had at the T-Joint of the two removable sections.

The dealership and the owners manual gave me a pattern to follow for re-installation of the sections, but the Service guys didn't give me much confidence about it, since they said that a number of folks have had "leaking" issues.

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Old 12-13-2007, 06:38 PM   #20
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run both our jeeps through the touchless ones..no probs...

my soft top won't leak in the rain of a thunderstorm but it leaks in the carwash!!
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Old 12-14-2007, 09:59 AM   #21
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Well, if the soft top leaks in a car wash, it'll leak in a hard rain while driving, and neither is acceptable..
Same here Kabak 303 and we are in a states where we can really explain what a Hurricane force and a really heavy thunderstorm looks like.
Well the water @ touch less car wash has much more pressure than a Hard rain, even in a Hurricane .
My Jeep does not leak on heavy rain neither in hurricanes while driving.
But @ the touch less carwash it leaks a little. Were it really leaks its thru the gap between the tail door and the Bottom of the plastic window.

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Old 12-18-2007, 09:14 AM   #22
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I have ran my 08 w/st in auto wash, without a problem. Well, except it was leaking in its usual place where front of ST meets the door. It leaks in rain too unless i park my jeep in driveway which had a bit of a slope down.

As for car wash, find the one that doesnt use the brushes. There are touchless car washes, but they dont clean the car well enough, and as soon as it dries you can see all the dirt again. I have car wash next to my house which uses long strips of some kind of rags, so it does a good job without scraping the windows/paint. But i would recommend removing your antenna, cause that thing swings like a mofo, and will put a few dings in your paint.
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Old 12-20-2007, 08:46 AM   #23
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I've run the wifes JK with soft top through the Hydraspray many times since we got it back in Dec.06. Never had a problem.
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Old 12-23-2007, 02:01 AM   #24
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Sorry if someone already posted this but I don't feel like reading all the posts. It says in the manual not to run them through an automatic wash due to the wax the wash sprays. It says it will harm the soft top.
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Old 12-23-2007, 11:16 AM   #25
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Ya, the abrasive chemicals can haze the plastic windows. Also not good for the seams. Learned that lesson with my 97.

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