Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How often should my car be washed?

If your car is exposed to corrosive materials like ocean salt, sand and construction fallout, it should be washed frequently. The same goes for vehicles in areas with high humidity. Moisture attracts contaminants and promotes a variety of chemical reactions that can damage your car's finish. Frequent washing is essential to the life of your car's chrome and painted surfaces. A weekly wash will ensure that your car is kept in a clean and contaminant free condition.

Q: What is the most environmentally friendly way I can wash my car: doing it myself or going to the local car wash?

car wash Washing your car in your driveway is one of the most environmentally un-friendly chores you can do. Water that runs off your car while washing goes directly into storm drains (and eventually into rivers, streams, creeks and wetlands) where it poisons aquatic life and damages our ecosystem. After all, that water is loaded with gasoline, oil and residues from exhaust fumes, as well as the harsh detergents being used for the washing itself. Top Hat Car Wash actually treats and separates its water before it is discharged back into the environment. We also use high pressure nozzles and pumps that minimize water usage. According to The International Car Wash Association, automatic car washes use less than half the water of even the most careful home car washer. Washing a car at home typically uses between 80 and 140 gallons of water, while Top Hat averages less than 34 gallons per car.

Q: Does it really help a car's value to keep its finish looking new?

Yes! Appearance is the first thing that people look for in a used car. If a car's finish is unattractive to a buyer, it is virtually impossible to get a good price—no matter how well the car runs. The car that is dull, noticeably rusted or spotty will sell for significantly less than the same car with a showroom finish. Proper care of the car's appearance will definitely pay off when it is time to trade it in!

Q: Why do Florida cars need special care?

car wash There are many unique situations specific to Florida that cars in other states do not experience. For instance, Florida cars experience constant exposure to sun and extreme heat, and let’s not forget to mention salt water. Well water from sprinklers is another common issue. This can stain your cars exterior and eat away at the paint job. Proper maintenance can solve or prevent this problem. Tree Sap is yet another Florida headache. Normal household products typically will not do the job properly. Most chemicals that others may advise you to use can severely damage your clear coat and paint. That is why you should leave it up to the pros. Love bugs (which appear in May and September) can cause a great deal of damage to the paint on your car if not properly removed immediately. A simple wash or even a wash with a high pressure hose will not remove love bugs once they have dried on the surface of your car. These situations all require you to pay extra attention to your car, and Top Hat loves to help you do that. In over 50 years of business Top Hat has washed nearly 3 million cars and seen every type of situation you could imagine. Tree sap, well water, love bugs, sun and salt water are no match for Top Hat Car Wash!

Q: How often should my car be waxed?

Just like the skin on your body, paint and clear coat must be kept clean, moist and protected. Think of wax as lotion for your car. If your car is washed weekly and garage kept you can go as long as 90 days before needing to apply wax. If the vehicle is black or you live close to the salt water, it should be waxed every 45 days. It is a common myth that cars with a clear coat do not need to be waxed. A clear coat is simply a clear layer of paint over the colored layer of paint. The clear coat is actually a paint itself and it is necessary to apply wax in order to protect it.

Q: Why does my car ride better after I've had my car washed? Am I imagining it?

car wash No you are not imagining it! Dirt and grime collect in the areas around your car's wheels. The concentrated spray at professional car washes, such as Top Hat, loosens and rinses the grime, giving you a smoother ride. This spray also aids in preventing rust inside the wheel well, which so happens to be the most difficult type of rust to stop. Also, studies have shown that a properly cleaned and waxed car has less wind resistance resulting in a smoother ride and improvement of fuel economy.

Q: What causes rust?

Rust is simply the oxidation of untreated metal surfaces when it comes into contact with the elements. Moisture is the main cause of rust. Dirt attracts and traps moisture, therefore a dirty car is the instigator of almost all car rust. This most commonly happens in those hidden areas behind the chrome and trim. Only a professional car wash, such as Top Hat, has the equipment and know-how to effectively reach all those hard-to-reach places and remove corrosion-producing grime to stop rust before it begins.

Q: What if I don't have the time or money to wash and wax my car regularly?

Top Hat offers fast, high-quality washes at affordable prices. That is why our slogan is Clean Car at a Fair Price. Also, once you become a member of our FREE VIP 10/10 club we will pay for your tenth wash and you will receive 10% off all services. You can’t afford not to protect your investment!