We tested a number of leading brand car wash soaps on the market, and Chemical Guys CWS301 Car Soap was our favorite. It goes on extremely soapy, particularly if you are using a foam gun. Next to it is Meguiar’s G17748 Ultimate Wash and Wax which we also commended very much. You can’t go wrong with our top five choices.
Car Wash Soap Reviews
If you are a car enthusiast, washing your car is no less than a ritual, and you will be proud of driving a clean and shiny car. Apart from aesthetics, a clean exterior can prolong the life of your car’s paint and finish, thus eventually giving you a car that will look great for several years. On the other hand, if you have neglected the car’s maintenance, you might not be able to repair the paint damage. It might result in deep scratches and dull paint. One of the best ways to maintain your vehicle and keep it looking new is the use of car wash soaps. As washing is the foremost step, therefore, choosing an appropriate soap is an important starting point.
Choosing a soap formula that is particularly designed for your vehicle will effectively preserve the paint and finish. This is an excellent and wise way to make sure your vehicle looks awesome every day. We have thoroughly researched and analyzed the performance of different brands of soaps to come up with our top five recommendations. These soaps will provide consistent performance and leave your car looking refreshed and improved. Also, we have included a buying guide that will help you to determine which features and qualities you require for your car. Our objective is to provide you with all the essential information that you need to purchase the best car wash soap for your vehicle.
Top 5 Car Wash Soaps
Chemical Guys CWS301 Car Soap
- 13+ YEARS OF CLEAN & SHINY VEHICLES – Citrus Wash & Gloss has been on Amazon since 2009, getting the best ratings and reviews 9,000 and growing; no other citrus based soap works like Citrus Wash & Gloss; check out the reviews and ratings on this page!
- PH BALANCED – Citrus Wash and Gloss is pH balanced and gentle on all exterior automobile parts like paint, clear coat, polished metals, glass, and plastic trim. It's safe on waxes, sealants and ceramic coatings too.
- HARNESS THE NATURAL CLEANING POWER OF CITRUS - The all-natural citrus extracts blended into Citrus Wash helps release dirt and grime from the surface to safely clean your car for a streak-free shine.
- CONCENTRATED – A little bit goes a long way. Just add 1-3 oz. of Citrus Wash and Gloss to a 5 gallon wash bucket or to a 32 oz. solution tank for your foam cannon or foam gun and you are ready to experience a foam frenzy.
- UNIQUE GLOSS ENHANCING FORMULA - Bring the shine back to your car with every wash. Chemical Guys Citrus Wash and Gloss is formulated to enhance the brightest shine on any color paintwork.
Chemical Guys CWS301 Car Soap made to our top pick for its citrus-based formula that guarantees you a sparkling clean in no time. The formula comprises biodegradable ingredients, which make it environmentally safe. It comes in a complete package including a detergent, soap, and cleansers that will leave your vehicle with a glamorous look.
The car wash soap gives a lot of foam that will lubricate your car and dispose of filth and dirt that usually gets in the car from everyday use. The soap foam will lift stains and dirt and remain in the form of bubbles until they are wiped off. These suds will save you from scrubbing your car. The Chemical Guys CWS301 Car Soap is an economical choice as one ounce goes with five gallons of water which make it one of the most powerful car wash soaps currently available on the market. Another noteworthy feature of the car soap is that it does not have colors or additives.
Moreover, the citrus formula comes in combination with a glossing agent to keep your car paint looking shiny and refreshed. Though it has no wax still, it will keep your car as shiny as it has received a fresh coat of wax. On top of that, eco-friendly nature appeals to the most ecologically conscious people.
Mothers 05664 California Gold Car Wash Soap
- Careful balance of powerful cleaning and care to prevent dulling paint
- Balanced pH for added safety even with continuous use
- Super-sudsy formula resists water spotting
- Designed to shine without removing wax
- Regular use provides a long lasting benefit to your vehicle
If you are looking for an inexpensive yet highly effective car wash soap, Mothers 05664, California Gold Car Wash soap, is an excellent choice. The product is comparatively cheap from other brands on the market. It is formulated with high-quality cleaning ingredients that will keep your car clean and shiny, along with preventing the car’s paint from dullness.
The car wash soap works efficiently in removing dirt from your vehicle without affecting the wax. The solution is created with a balanced pH which makes it safe to use even if you wash your car on a daily basis. The balanced pH also protects your car’s color, which is a crucial factor. The formula offers a high level of suds that are resistant to water spotting.
The overall composition of Mothers 05664 car wash soap is concentrated, and a very small amount is required to wash your car. It provides a shiny and high-glossy finish to your car. That’s all you need to make your favorite companion look gorgeous.
Griot’s Garage 10866 Brilliant Finish Car Wash
- Maintain paint care perfection bucket after bucket as our special brighteners yield a lasting, high-gloss and streak-free appearance.
- Creates an eruption of rich, slippery suds
- Made from concentrated premium ingredients
- Produces a head-turning, streak-free shine
Black is the most popular color among vehicles and requires proper maintenance. If you are searching for a soap that is easy to use, we recommend Griot’s Garage 10866 Brilliant Finish Car Wash. The soap contains appropriate pH for black color cars that prevents damage to the wax protection.
The product is safe to use and composed of biodegradable ingredients, which makes it environmentally friendly. Also, the high concentration of suds will keep your car away from water spots. The solution works effectively in removing dirt and grime and makes the procedure effortless. Furthermore, the pleasant yet not very aggressive smell will make you love this solution.
The Griot’s Garage 10866 car wash soap is approximately 64 ounces which is more than enough to last for 6 months, so you can get rid of buying soap after every week. The high gloss finish is the prominent feature of this soap which makes it popular among users. Overall, it’s easy to apply and rinse, which keeps you away from any worry, particularly when it’s about suds residue.
3M Car Wash Soap 39000
- Car soap cuts through dirt with ease
- Special formula won't harm wax layers
- Soap reveals true beauty of cars by stripping away residue
- Formula is body shop safe
- Concentrated soap mixes one part to 100 parts water
The 3M Car Wash Soap 39000 stands out for its unique phosphate-free formula, along with a tempting cherry scent. After washing your car using this car soap, you will definitely want to stand outside and enjoy the wonderful look and scent of your car.
The car wash soap comes with a 16 oz. Bottle, which is still fairly concentrated with a 3M suggested 1 oz. to 1 gallon of water ratio. Though you will get fewer washes, what you still get is worth it and long-lasting. The 3M Car Wash Soap 39000 might sound like a car wash soap designed for high-end cars, but it delivers specifically to an average car owner or devotee. Moreover, the product offers you similar or even improved features to other top-rated brands.
It allows you to clean the dirt and grime from your car within minutes. Also, it guarantees you that your car’s coat, paint, and wax will remain protected and will not be affected even after several washes from 3M Car Wash Soap 39000. Likewise, the car wash formula comes with a gentle cleaning liquid gel which will guard against potentially damaging water spots. The solution works effectively with white cars and comprises of pH that is completely suitable. Overall, it offers great value for money.
Meguiar’s G17748 Ultimate Wash and Wax
- CLEAR COAT SAFE: Carnauba wax and synthetic polymer technology gently cleans the paint while leaving behind additional wax protection
- DEEP SHINE: Leaves a deep, glossy, just-waxed shine and gently cleans in one easy step
- AMAZING SUDS: Incredible sudsing action safely lifts dirt and grime to minimize swirling
- PAINT MAINTENANCE: The perfect way to clean and shine your car’s paint, as well as boost its protection and glossiness, in between regular waxings
- VERSATILE: Ultimate Wash & Wax is compatible with all Meguiar's washes and waxes. And it’s pH neutral so it won't strip wax while it cleans
The Meguiar’s G17748 Ultimate Wash and Wax make for a perfect car wash soap to clean your favorite vehicle. It offers regular waxing to enhance your car’s performance, along with a glossier shine from the exterior. Meguiar’s G17748 Ultimate Wash and Wax feature a superior blend of carnauba wax and synthetic polymers to provide the right protection and suitable car wash.
Talking about composition, it is made with synthetic polymer technology that cleans the car’s paint and leaves wax, eventually making it look clear, shiny, and dazzling. With a quick single-step process, it leaves a waxed shine. The high-level suds plays a role in getting rid of dust and filth on your car.
This car wash soap and wax formula is compatible with all car washes. Featuring a neutralized nature, it makes sure to prevent your car from any damage. Further, the foamy lather helps in quick cleaning and polishing. The entire process is easy to apply. Overall, it’s a great way to have regular waxing sessions and boost your car with superior protection and a glossier look.
Car Wash Soap Buying Guide
Know Your Requirement
You definitely don’t want a soap that is not appropriate for your car or is too harsh in the paint. While looking for a car wash soap, it’s crucial to read through the specifications and manufacturers’ recommendations to make a choice that best suits your vehicle and the type of paint. If your car has matte paint, that might require a certain type of car wash soap so keep in mind the requirement of the vehicle when choosing.
Purchase the Whole Line of Products from the Same Manufacturer
Usually, it is not recommended to purchase a car wash soap from one manufacturer and another product, for instance, a car wax from another brand, as both products might not be compatible. Every company makes use of its unique chemical formulas and constituents that give different results. If you combine products from different brands, you might end up with undesirable results and damage to your vehicle. You will find a lot of companies selling their products in the form of packs or kits, so you can get everything in one purchase.
Buy Eco-Friendly Products
Prior to environmental laws, most car chemicals comprise toxic and artificial ingredients. In the past few years, many companies started manufacturing environmentally friendly products which are primarily water-based and safe for the environment. It’s a wise decision to select a product that has minimum aggressive detergents and keeps the planet safe.
When purchasing a car wash soap, you will want to make sure that your choice is also economical. The liquid-to-water ratio shows how much you can save on buying a particular soap. You will find some of the soaps that have quite a low concentration and gives you a ratio of approximately one gallon of water. Therefore, the purchase is not only about quality but how much you can make use of it. The soap that comes with a high concentration level is more cost-effective. A lot of soaps have a liquid-to-water ratio of 16, 32, and 48 and above. Keep in mind to check the specification while choosing an appropriate car soap for your beloved vehicle.
Formula pH Level
The alkalinity and acidity ratio in a car wash soap is of great significance. Every soap comes with a specification that tells about the pH level. A soap having a high alkaline level is meant for washing acidic dirt. On the other hand, soaps with very high acidic pH can result in severe damage to your car paint and finish. Whereas soaps having natural pH can neither be harmful nor very effective in the removal of alkaline or acidic dirt. It is advised to choose a car wash soap that has a slightly higher or lower pH above neutral. A soap with extremely high or low pH can damage your vehicle.
Streak and Water Spot Resistance
Streaks and water spots can damage your car’s exterior if not removed immediately. Many car washing soaps claim to have enough strength to remove both streaks and water spots. However, they might not be able to stand by their name. Therefore, we advise you to choose a car washing soap that features a quick-drying label.
Most people often ignore this issue, though it’s an important consideration to make. Some car wash soaps come with strong scents that might be a problem for people having allergic issues. Therefore, opt for a soap that is non-mild scented or unscented.
Car maintenance will help the vehicle’s paint to last longer and gives a higher value when you want to sell or trade. If your car is properly taken care of, it will look great. Also, it will resist rust and other unwanted particles. You can have a good-looking exterior of your car by using proper car wash soap, washing more often, and making sure you are using the appropriate tools to prevent any damage or scratch to the paint. Vehicles are manufactured to last longer, and proper care will even prolong it. A well-maintained car will always look new with shiny and vibrant paint for many years.