Re: Touchless Car washes (mdeleo3)
That is a long subject.
Since there is no agitation, the chemical detergents are quite strong.
Each self service "wave a wand" usually uses different suppliers and they look at what the "customer" expectations in their market are.
Most are not as concerned about their vehicle, enough to research, etc.
These people believe that the "Polywax" they spray on is all the need and may, a few, apply some Mequiars, or "miracle stuff" they bought from a tv ad.
We have done lots of reaserch over the past ten years and find that the following is fairly common.
1. Very caustic, removes any sealant/wax, but number of times will depend upon what is on the vehicle, what chemical supplier is providing the detergents, etc.
2. After 4 to 6 washes, the black, pebble grain trim will start to exhibit permanent discoloring, rubber seals will also exhibit damage.
3. The "poly sealant" is in most cases little more than some keosene and dimethal silicone in an emulsion which will create a "shine" or "gloss" factor.
4. Windows of the vehicle will start to experience a build up of the dimethal silicones and look cloudy, etc.
There are other issues, but allow me to say this, even as a car care chemical supplier to the vehicle manufacturers, quality hand wash and tunnel wash industry, detailing and we operate 5 shops, doing over 15,000 vehicles a year---I will use one on occassion, due to the weather, etc.
But, I do realize that it is removing my sealant, and as far as the trim, we have a system to easily repairs permanently any discoloring.
So, it is your call.