Tesla Car Wash Near Me… Or Should You DIY? (Ultimate Guide)

VD February 02 2022

There is a lot of ambiguity surrounding the Tesla cars when it comes to keeping them clean. Some Tesla car models indeed require an extra level of caution for car washes. 

The Model 3 owner's manual strictly warns against going through an automatic car wash. If you must, it's essential you only use a touchless car wash that doesn't involve those harsh, rolling brushes. 

Another thing Tesla warns against is pressure washes, which can often mess up the surface. Fortunately, pressure washers can still be used, given that you maintain the right distance (at least 12 inches). 

Moreover, hot water is an absolute no, and some cleaning detergents and shampoos are also not recommended. High alkalinity, acidic ingredients, and other cleaning supplies can lead to severe regrets later. For this reason, we have compiled a few safe methods that go perfectly with every Tesla. 

How Do You Wash A Tesla Properly?

  • Option №1: The wash and Ceramic Coating

This is the most recommended way as it leaves a Tesla thoroughly decontaminated and shiny with a good waxing. If you drive your Tesla through some excessive dirt or mud, your car may be exposed to all types of contaminants. These include stubborn iron deposits, asphalt, and bug guts. 

All this can be cleaned up quickly with a gentle decontaminating soap such as the Torque Detail's Decon Soap. With a wash like this, your car will also be made free of germs that aren't obvious to the naked eye.

Material List

Step 1: Washing and Drying

Make sure you thoroughly wash up your car with a water hose to remove the bigger chunks of dirt and debris. Next, prepare at least two different buckets for Soap and rinsing. For the soap bucket, fill it with at least two gallons of water and pour the Ceramic Prep ingredients as recommended on the product.  

After this, use a high-quality wash mitt (preferably microfiber) and soak it up with the soap mixture. Make sure you only scrub the exterior of your Tesla gently and use a new soap mixture frequently. Once your wash mitt gathers enough dirt, rinse it thoroughly with water and saturate it with more soap mixture. Lastly, clean all the residue off from a distance so the surface doesn't get hit with too much pressure. Don't let any soap become hardened on the surface and hose down as soon as possible. 

Using a high-absorbent towel can help you dry it off more efficiently and keep a more pleasant shine.

Step 2: Claying the car

Claying your Tesla can help you remove the more stubborn grit that the Soap did not help with. You can use the Torque Detail's Clay Decon Kit, which comes with all the things you need for a good quality claying. 

To start, spray and cover each part of your car's exterior with Clay Lube and gently scrub it off with the clay pad. 

It can be easier to take on small parts of the surface at each time, scrub it and then move on to the next part. Once you are satisfied with the claying process, you want to wash off all the clay lube with water. Don't forget to dry it off immediately for a balanced shine. 

Step 3: Ceramic Coat The Vehicle

The next step is to ceramic coat your Tesla. You can use any 3-step Ceramic Coating Kit with a Ceramic coat spray for quick application. 

To start, shake the spray bottle well before using it and only apply to one car section. Next, use a high-quality microfiber towel to spread the mixture gently throughout the surface. It's important to understand that an un-buffed spray mixture should never be allowed to sit onto the paint of your Tesla. 

It is also recommended that you do the whole process during a cooler time with less sunlight. Let the buffed coating stay on your car for at least 48 hours of curing. Lastly, make sure your vehicle avoids all kinds of moisture and water during this time to ensure perfect curing.

Option №2: Waterless Wash

This is a much quicker and more straightforward part. Because it doesn't require any washing away, later on, it is preferable when in a hurry. You can use the Torque Detail's Turbo Waterless Detailer or any other Kit that comes with the waterless spray. 

All you need to do is cover your car's exterior for just 1 or 2 minutes and then rub it clean with a soft microfiber mitt wash or towel. This will soften and emulsify all the grime and bits of dirt without the need for harsh soaping. Like the claying process, try to clean each section of your car at a time and then move on to the next one. 

Moreover, some Waterless Wash sprays also come with ceramic ingredients, so you get an excellent, anti-static, and shiny finishing. This also ensures that dirt, debris, and water don't get stuck to your car as much. 

Option №3: Touchless Car Wash

As mentioned earlier, Tesla cars are perfectly compatible with a touchless car wash as long as it does not involve severe pressure. Make sure that you put the car in neutral not to damage the car's transmission. 

Most touchless car washes will pull the car through the wash with the help of hooking rails. If your vehicle is not neutral at this point, you risk damaging multiple parts. 

Because electric cars are different from the traditional ones, putting them in neutral is also different. Make sure that you read through the owner's manual of your particular Tesla Model to engage in neutral mode the right way. 


Make sure you never carry out the cleaning process in harsh or direct sunlight. The sunlight and heat cause any cleaning product, whether soapy water, sprays, or shampoos, to evaporate or solidify. This means the ingredients don't get enough time to soften and emulsify the dirt. Moreover, quick evaporation can give your car unsightly water spots that compromise both the look and shine of your paint.