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What To Do When Your Car Gets Damaged at a Carwash

When your car gets damaged in a carwash, you have a right to being compensated.

We have all heard horror stories of how car wash has damaged cars, broken off accessories and destroyed the paint work. Most of these stories are true but there are few people who have been able to make claims to recover the cost of the damage from the car wash. This article will tell you what to do to avoid damage to the car and also guide you as to what to do if your car gets damage in a car wash service in Dubai.

What Kind of Damage Can You Expect At A Carwash

Talking to experts who know about car wash and the damage they cause, we were able to compile a list of the most common damage that can occur when you take your vehicle to a car wash. There are many different types of car washes and with each the damage that can occur is different. But almost all types of car washes do report the following damage and we are giving you tips to prevent these damages: * Broken Antennae – If your car has an antenna it can be torn off, broken or damaged irreparably. To avoid the damage, you can make sure that when you take your car into the car wash, you retract the antennae so it is no longer jutting out. Most new cars have auto retractable antennae which fold down as soon as the car is turned off. If your car is not equipped with one, the next best thing to do is to retract it manually. Most antennae will retract down safely but there are a few that need to be removed. If your car has an antenna that cannot be retracted then you should remove it. This is a fairly easy job and requires unscrewing of the antennae from its housing and removing it. You may need a wrench or pliers to loosen it though. If your car does not have antennae that can be retracted or removed, you are advised not to use an automated car wash but instead, use a person who can provide car wash at your doorstep. You need to get your car washed manually to avoid your antennae being ripped off.

  • Broken or Damaged Windshield Wipers – This is a common happening in automated car washes, especially the old brush type and the newer cloth type car washes. The wipers can get entangled in the wash cloth and get ripped off. Or get caught in the fast moving brush and get twisted out of shape or damaged. This happens more often to the back window wipers. There is little that you can do to prevent the damage besides removing the wipers before taking the car into the car-wash. If the wipers get damaged at the car was, you should bring it to the notice of the management immediately.

  • Side Mirror Broken or Ripped Off: This is another common thing that happens at all car washes and carwash Dubai are no exception. Before leaving your car at the washing bay or tunnel, ensure that the mirror is properly secured to the car and is not loose. Also fold the mirror in towards the body so it is not sticking out. Folding the mirror inward will prevent it from getting entangled in the brushes or the cloth of the carwash.

  • Losing Trim or Broken Trims: This too happens when the trimming on the car is already loose or not properly secure. So like the side mirrors, make sure that the trimmings are all tightened and properly secure before you take your vehicle to the carwash.

  • Dents: These most likely occur when the attendants are driving them around or if your car moves inside the tunnel. Make sure that you follow the car wash’s instructions on how to leave your car. Most car wash have trained employees and a good system to avoid collision damage but that doesn’t ensure that it never will.

  • Scratches: The most expensive damage that can happen to a car is when the paint work gets damaged. The most common of these damages is scratches on the paintwork. These can happen at all car washes and the only thing you can do to avoid it is to ensure that you take your car either early in the morning or on a day when it is not very busy. The dust, small stones and debris from cars before you often get trapped into the brushes and the clothes at the car wash and this can in turn scratch your paintwork setting you back a substantial amount of money to get it redone or repaired.

  • Damaged Clear Coat and Paint: This is a serious damage and can cause a big loss to both the car wash and the owner. Though most car manufacturers are no using protective coating on the cars that are hard to strip off in a car wash, if you have an older car or you are not sure of the coating on your car, you should instead opt for manual car wash by searching for a car wash near me. This will help you to identify a person or a service that can give you a car wash at your door step.

How Damage Occurs

Now that we know what the damage may happen to your car, here are a few things to keep in mind about how the damage occurs.

Strong Chemicals and Hard Brushes

Some of the older car washes may still use strong chemical based car shampoos to get rid of the dirt and grime on your car. These shampoos often do a lot more than just strip off the dirt. They can actually damage the protective coating on your car and cause damage to your paint work. If you are at a brish based carwash, they hard bristles of the brush can strip off the clear coat on top of your car’s paintwork exposing it to damage. These brushes also leave scratches on the car. If possible opt for brushless car wash.

Dirty Water That Hasn’t Been Properly Recycled

With the water conservation rules in Dubai, most car washes are required to recycle and reuse the water. But, often the water is not properly recycled leaving it dirty. You do not wish to clean your car with dirty water. So make sure that the carwash is using properly recycled water before taking your car in.

High Pressure Water

These water jets can drive the dust particles to embed into your paintwork damaging it. If there are any tiny scratches etc, the water gets into them causing more damage to it. It can also get into the sensors that are built into your car and its electronics.

What To Do If Damage Occurs

The first step is to ensure that there is damage. Often the car wash has its employees go over the car to spot any previous damage and report it. You should take this seriously and accompany the attendant when he/she is inspecting the car.

Next enquire about the damage policy. Many car washes have the sign saying that they are not liable for any damages. But if they have been negligent you can still claim damages from them. But the onus of proving negligence falls on you.

Always inspect your vehicle immediately after it comes out of car wash. Do not drive away as you then lose the right to claims as the car wash management can always claim that the damage occurred after you drove off.

File your complaint Immediately. Speak to the owner or the manager and ask for a damage claim form. They should have one. Fill in the form and submit it keeping a copy for yourself. If there is no form available, write your complaint on a piece of paper and have them countersign the receipt and keep a signed copy with yourself.

It always takes time for the complaint to be resolved. Depending upon the insurance policy of the car wash it may take several weeks before you see any money and may require providing a damage estimate to the insurer.

Prevention is the best remedy always. So, if you wish to prevent any substantial damage to your car, you may want to give the car wash a miss. This does not mean that you should drive around in a dirty car. Dubai weather can cause a lot of dust and grime to build up on cars and they need to be cleaned regularly. You can search for car washing service near you and hire one to come and clean your car on a weekly basis. This can be done at your doorstep and you can then keep a check on the quality of the cleaning and any damage that may occur.

You can look up car washing and cleaning service on and hire one that is close to you and suits your budget. With you can be sure that the services that are being offered are genuine. You can check the customer feedback on and use the app to keep track of the work done as well as make payment through the app too.

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