Best Car Wash Kit: Spiff Up Your Ride

Be a car care expert in minutes with one of these top car wash kits.

Best Car Wash Kit Overall

Chemical Guys 14-Piece Arsenal Builder Car Wash Kit

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Best Car Wash Kit Value

Turtle Wax Complete Carnauba Wash u0026 Wax Kit

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Best Car Wash Kit Honorable Mention

Adam's Arsenal Builder 21 Item Car Wash Kit

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How you take care of your car says a lot about you, so make the right statement by using the best car wash kit for your baby. I come from a car family where weekly washings are considered normal. These days, we have a professional detailer come to the house to wash our Toyota XRunner and Durango Hellcat. However, there was a time when I did the washing and waxing myself. Like any enthusiast, I have my go-to favorites. First, there is the wash formula that suds perfectly and suspends dirt to prevent scratches. Then the detailer works magic at creating a perfectly smooth surface ready for waxing. Finally, the wax seals and protects, giving you that deep luster and shine. So, what message are you sending with the condition of your car’s exterior? With one of these best car wash kits, you can ensure your car is always looking its best.

Summary List 

Best Overall: Chemical Guys 14-Piece Arsenal Builder Car Wash Kit

Best Value: Turtle Wax Complete Carnauba Wash & Wax Kit

Honorable Mention: Adam’s Arsenal Builder 21 Item Car Wash Kit

Most Versatile: Meguiar’s Complete Car Care Kit

Premium Pick: Armor All Premier Car Care Kit

Our Methodology

I made sure to pick reputable brands that are well-known in the industry. Most of these companies have been in business for decades and have spent many years perfecting their formulas so consumers have access to the best cleaning supplies. I also looked at the types of items included in each bundle, so you’re not paying for products you don’t need and are getting products you will actually use. I also understand that car owners have different budgetary requirements. As a result, I chose a wide range of products for those who have the ability to splurge to those who just want a basic kit with traditional car cleaning supplies. I avoided products from unknown manufacturers and kits with smaller bottles and items that don’t last very long. 

Our product selections, rankings, and awards for this story are based on research. While we haven’t conducted real-world testing on all of these products yet, we’ve looked at consumer testimonials and data, tutorials, and general discussions on social media and in forums. We also consider price and specification in the context of the segment. And, of course, we rely on our institutional knowledge of the automotive landscape to weed out weak products.

Best Car Wash Kit Reviews & Recommendations

Best Overall

Chemical Guys 14-Piece Arsenal Builder Car Wash Kit

See It

Best Value

Turtle Wax Complete Carnauba Wash u0026 Wax Kit

See It

Premium Pick

Adam's Arsenal Builder 21 Item Car Wash Kit

See It

Most Versatile

Meguiar's Complete Car Care Kit

See It

Honorable Mention

Armor All Premier Car Care Kit

See It

Our Verdict

My top pick for the best car wash kit is the Chemical Guys 14-Piece Arsenal Builder Car Wash Kit because it has top-quality products that deliver show-worthy results. For a more affordable option, try the Turtle Wax Complete Carnauba Wash & Wax Kit, which gives you a simple yet effective wash and wax solution.

Things to Consider Before Buying Car Wash Kit

Liquid Contents

The number of products you need in your kit will depend on how detailed of a wash you want to do. A simple wash and wax only may only need maybe two or three products. A more detailed washing could require six or seven different products. Try to avoid products that try to do too many things at once. They do a lot, but none of it well. Instead of a wash and wax combo, look for a kit that has separate wash and wax solutions. In addition, your car has multiple exterior materials, so look for a kit that can address all of these different surfaces. For example, this could include solutions for paint, metal, plastic, glass, and rubber. This will give you the best finish and protection for each material type.

Accessories

Some kits come with more than just the cleaning products. These kits are nice because you don’t need to purchase anything in addition to the kit. A bucket keeps everything organized in storage and is useful during washing. A foam cannon works with specially designed soap to create a thick layer of suds over your vehicle, eliminating the need for the bucket. Other accessories to consider are a mitt or sponge to wash with, an application pad for wax, a tire brush, tire shine applicator, and microfiber towels. The more products you have in your kit, the more tools you will need. It’s best to use a separate applicator for each product so that you don’t have cross contamination degrading the effectiveness of each product. 

Car Wash Kit Pricing 

You can buy a simple car wash kit for less than $50. However, it will have a limited number of products and tools. It will also be basic quality formulas that will not provide any specialized cleaning ability or protection for your car. More expensive kits tend to come with more supplies.

FAQs 

You’ve got questions. The Drive has answers.

Q:  How often should I wash my car?

A: At a minimum, we recommend washing your vehicle every two weeks. Some car owners, however, clean their vehicles weekly, while others do so less regularly.

Q: Can I use hand soap or dishwashing soap to clean my car?

A: We don’t recommend it. Household cleaning products are not designed to clean a car’s paint and may remove the protective coating on the finish.

Q: How do I dry my car after washing it?

A: You can dry your vehicle with a clean towel that’s designed for use on your car. There are silicone squeegees that will remove the water without scratching your paint. Then for a completely contactless solution, you can use pressurized air to blow the water off the vehicle’s surface.

Q: Is it bad to let your car air dry after washing it?

A: It’s a bad idea to let your vehicle naturally air dry after you wash it. You did all of the work to wash it, so why ruin it with water spots? Minerals and deposits in your water remain on your vehicle’s surface when the water evaporates. These minerals create micro-etches in your clear coat, which dull the look of your car’s paint.

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When she's not at the keyboard, Noelle unwinds by exploring the northeast in her classic German sports car or custom Indian Scout. She's written about the joy and hardships of vintage car ownership for Porsche Club of America's e-Brake News. You can read some of her articles about the motorcycle lifestyle in an issue of MotoSpirit magazine.