• Jul 22nd 2010 at 2:01PM
  • 39
We'll be the first to admit that we're not the most fastidious folks when it comes to a clean vehicle. It's not that we don't pride ourselves in having a clean-as-can-be car, it's just that there are more pressing things on our schedule most days. The good news is, we're not alone. According to research worked up by Autoquake – an online vehicle retailer in the UK – nearly half of drivers surveyed clean their vehicle in intervals of six months or more. Hey, even we aren't that bad. Even more interestingly, the poll found that women are more likely to leave their ride dirty than men.
Around 56 percent of the women in the study said that they leave their vehicle unwashed for six months or more while 44 percent of men said the same. Granted, leaving half a year's worth of grime to eat away at your vehicle's bodywork is bad, but it gets worse: Four percent of those surveyed said that they never clean their vehicle.

This lead us to wonder – how often do give your vehicle the once-over? Come clean in our poll below, and don't forget to check out the full press release from Autoquake after the jump.

How often do you clean your car?
More than once a week 685 (6.5%)
Once a week 2427 (22.9%)
More than once a month 2927 (27.6%)
Once a month 2870 (27.1%)
I haven't seen my paint since before the Bush Administration 1679 (15.9%)

[Source: Autoquake]

Show full PR text

20/07/10 from Autoquake

More than half of Britain's car drivers leave their car unwashed for six months at a time or longer, according to research by Autoquake, the UK's largest online car retailer.

Women are worse than men when it comes to caring for their cars. Well over half (56%) of women leave their car unwashed for six months or more, as opposed to 44% of men. Women are also more likely to get someone else to clean their car than men: 7% pay for car cleaning as opposed to 4% of male drivers.

In a survey of over 1000 motorists, 34% said they only washed their car inside and out once every six months. More than one in ten (13%) only clean the car thoroughly once a year, while 4% admit to never cleaning their car at all.

"Letting your car get dirty is a bad idea," said Autoquake's CEO, Dermot Halpin. "It doesn't just look shabby: nasty deposits like birdlime can damage a car's paintwork, while salted roads in winter can corrode alloy wheels. This kind of cosmetic damage can hurt the value of your car when you come to sell it on.

"What's more, if your car is so dirty that the number plates become unreadable you could land yourself in trouble with the police," Halpin added.

There are wide differences between the regions, too. Nearly 71% of drivers in East Anglia fail to clean their car properly for at least six months at a time. In the South West, 65% of drivers wait half a year or more before cleaning their car inside and out. Almost six out of ten (59%) are just as lazy in Yorkshire and Humber.

Drivers in the North East do most to keep their cars clean. More than one in five (22%) wash their car at least once a fortnight. Welsh drivers also like to keep their cars spick and span, with 21% getting the chammy out at least every two weeks. In London, the figure is 17%.

"We're surprised that so few owners take pride in their cars," commented Halpin. "Cleaning a car properly doesn't take long, and when condition is so crucial to a used car's value, it's time well spent."

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      i was my car when the rain comes out and thats about it. I've had it for at least 6 years and never washed it. Looks exactly like every other car on the road.
        • 4 Years Ago
        This has been sitting in my junk email filter for ages! forgot to check it. Anyway i want the inside of my car to be spotless because they generally turn out to be the worst after lots of wear and tear. When selling it on having a brand new looking interior can get you big bucks. The outside of my car is never washed but thats because it doesnt need to be. Neither does it need to be waxed. If it looked dirty then i would of course clean it but it doesnt. Could be due to me being in the UK where it always rains but still!
        • 5 Years Ago
        ...except for the ones that people actually take care of. A modern car will probably go 10 years without being washed without rusting, but the paint is going to be oxidized to hell. It really does make a difference if you keep it washed and waxed. Taking care of my paint heavily contributed to my car selling for its KBB "excellent" value, which worked out to about $1000 on a $5000 value. There were other factors obviously, but the curb appeal of a used car is strongly affected by the condition of the paint. Most used cars have crappy, oxidized paint, because the owners don't wash and wax it.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Well here is more of my OCD coming through, but @nardvark is right. Actually, I am pretty shocked how many autoblog readers are commenting about not cleaning thier cars or never cleaning them! I dont know any car guys who dont want thier cars spotless. Its a sign of good maintenance, its a sign of pride. I thought we had more enthusiasts on here. This is why the used car market sucks so bad, no one takes care of thier cars anymore.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I never wash my Jeeps as there is little point. They just get dirty again. I don't let mud stay caked on or anything, but I don't really wash them. Plus it would require me to put the top back on my Wrangler.

      My other "cars" always got washed when I had them though.
      • 5 Years Ago
      You should see my sister's car. LOL

      I wash my car at least every two months, and it's pretty clean on the inside. This is a 1995 Maxima. Now, if you see my sister's car, you'd think she's living in it and it's a 1998 Grand Cherokee.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I probably clean my car once a year, but I also am a college student living in a city with no access to a hose.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Options are once a month or (essentially) never? I wash mine about once every 2-3 months, but do a good job each time. Suspect there are more like me out there.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I agree, if roughly half of those polled in the Autoquake study claim to wash their cars every 6+ months, the intervals of this poll are too biased towards the low end.

      When it was new, I washed my baby every week. Now that it's paid for and worth less I wash my car every month or so.
      • 5 Years Ago
      old car: maybe once a year, there was no point washing it
      new car: a couple times a month
      • 5 Years Ago
      Reminds me of that Married with Children episode.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Everyone likes a dirty woman.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Dude, you obviously have never been to a car wash in the Dominican Republic. We wash our cars all the time, because it's cheap, and there are tons of scantily clad beautiful waitresses to serve us ice cold beer while we puff on our cigars.

      Treat me nice, and I may invite ya down sometime!
      • 5 Years Ago
      My car gets cleaned however often it rains.

      • 5 Years Ago
      Well, in UK we don't need to wash our cars...................because it rains every day.
      The outcome of the poll was pretty obvious......
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