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How To Safely Clean Snow Off Your Car

by

Just a quick article to address a conversation I recently had with a few friends and colleagues.  This is for those of us that live in climates in which we come outside our home or shop to see this…

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Just earlier in 2014 Chicagoland was hit with a pretty bad snowstorm and my car was one of the unlucky ones sitting outside.  While I did clean it a couple times daily in order to avoid shoveling the actual top of the car, at one point I had a good 1.5-2 feet of snow accumulate.  I have used a shovel before, needless to say VERY CAREFULLY, to remove a lot of snow from my car, but this time I simply put on some gloves and used my arms to knock it off as much as possible before brushing it.  The photo below shows a bit of snow after it had a few hours in the morning to melt, so this more so resembles a normal snowfall rather than the multiple feet of snow we had here recently.

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In any case, there are a few methods of snow removal, so I wanted to share mine.  I try to purchase a new brush for $8-10 every year because I like the bristles to be firm should I need to clean my car.  As seen in the photo below, I make sure my brush has the plastic scraper on the opposite end of the bristles.  Some brushes that are sold have the scraper on the same edge, which makes it not only difficult to bend the brush when cleaning, but dangerous in that the edge of the scraper can scratch up the paint pretty damn well (ask me how I know!).  That said, the only other tool I use is my trustworthy DI Microfiber Waffle Weave Drying Towel, which is simply wrapped around the brush.

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There’s obviously no science to the wrapping, so I simply make sure the bristles are wrapped and that I have enough towel away from the bristles to hold.  Once wrapped, I simply go to removing the snow little by little…

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As expected, the microfiber towel will get soaked over time and some snow will stick to it, so I try to to stop the brushing every panel or so and knock off some snow from the towel…

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This method works very well for me with the paint and I try to only remove the majority of the snow.  I normally use the brush on glass first, then wrap it and use on paint.  I try not to care too much about all the snow stuck in the crevices, etc. as it’ll simply melt away and won’t add too much weight to my car or impede my vision.

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Well that’s about it, short and simple.  I’d be interested to hear of any other techniques, so please don’t hesitate to post any tips or advice in the comments below.

Ivan Rajic Lustr Deatil
Ivan Rajic
LUSTR Auto Detail
481 W Wise Road
Schaumburg, IL 60193
LustrDetail.com
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7 comments on How To Safely Clean Snow Off Your Car

  1. Patrick says:

    I use a Husqvarna backpack blower to take the snow off of my vehicles. It’s quick, requires little to no effort, there is zero paint contact, and gets ALL of the snow off the vehicle and out of the crevices!

  2. Gil says:

    I park my “good car” in the garage in November and take it out in April….best way I know to deal with the Upstate NY snow….as for my truck…the daily driver…I clean off the windows and take it for a drive down the four lane…@ 55 (!!!) the snow finds it way back to the ground where it belongs!

    • Paul says:

      The problem with that method is that the snow may find it’s way onto the windshield of a vehicle behind you, momentarily blinding that driver. Very dangerous! Or, it could cover your rear window, reducing your own visibility.

  3. Stan says:

    I use a boars hair car washing brush mounted to a extension pole. I able to push snow off of the top of the roof of an SUV. I don’t try to clear it down to paint because even boars hair can still scratch. It’s too expensive for snow removal but I had one sitting around after being abandon (caused fine scratches while car washing).

  4. Very good idea!
    I watched a car dealer remove the snow we had here in Atlanta a few weeks ago with a shop broom. Sent shivers down my spine!

  5. Cleaning up the snow from driveway, roof and from the car is daunting and excruciating task.I think this post will help everyone to clean the snow off our cars in the winter months without developing scratches.

  6. Ray Scott says:

    I use a blower as well unless there is ice. I have a Worx cordless and it works great.

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