This is a crucial part of getting acquainted with a new ride.

  • Car: 2011 BMW 128i
  • Location: Southern California
  • Photog: Peter Nelson (Instagram)
  • Camera: iPhone 12

If you’re like me, you try to wash your cars with your own hands at least once per week. Not only is it therapeutic, it’s also the easiest form of regular maintenance. Keeping cars clean prolongs the paint.

Doing this for the first time with a new car that you’re ecstatic about is such a crucial experience, too. It helps cement the pride of ownership and gives you a chance to get acquainted with what it’s like to wash a new steed. How does the water run off of it? How much square footage is there to cover? Do the brake pads dust a bunch, and therefore, do the wheels need more attention? Are the wheels easy to clean off? How long does it take to clean the car off, from initial rinse to final dry?

I was so happy to wash my new-to-me 2011 BMW 128i for the first time, three days after taking ownership. I look forward to many, many more, especially considering its paint is in very good condition.