Attaching bike racks to your car seems like a convenient and effective choice that helps you transport the bike without compromising the cabin space or the look of the car.
While they are convenient to use, attaching or removing them is quite a hassle.
That’s why people often prefer to leave them on for extended times.
The question is if it’s possible to keep them on while going through an automatic car wash? Let’s find out.
Can I Go Through a Carwash with a Bike Rack?
The quick answer is no. It’s a bad idea to use an automatic car wash with any peripheral attachments like a bike rack or roof storage.
Automatic car washes use precise robotic arms and other brush systems that might get stuck in the gaps and cause damage.
Saving a little time by not removing these attachments can often backfire and cause damage to both your car and the washing system in place.
That’s why you’ll often see signs on most car washes that recommend removing any modifications or aftermarket attachments from the car before you enter.
What Could Go Wrong If I Go Ahead with A Bike Rack?
As stated before, automatic car washes are not designed to accommodate aftermarket modifications.
The most obvious problem you could face deals with damage to your car or the washing system. Parts of the carwash system may tangle with the car, which may lead to a lot of damage.
Another problem you could also face is the damage to your fittings.
Car bodies undergo a lot of processes to ensure no water damage or issues due to moisture.
Bike racks and other fittings are not designed like that. Exposure to water may cause rust and other damages to the fittings, which damage the paint or other exterior features of your car.
Your car and the washing systems are not the only things that may get damaged.
The bike rack or any other attachment may fall on other cars in the line.
Since no car wash or manufacturers recommend going through automatic car washes with the bike rack, the responsibility, and all the liability will be on you.
Apart from bike racks, are there any other attachments I should avoid
Yes. You need to avoid all kinds of aftermarket attachments if you are planning to visit an automatic car wash.
Bike racks, roof racks, carriers, and all other kinds of aftermarket attachments generally come with explicit warnings and instructions to not visit any automatic car washes.
Even if you don’t see any warning signs, it’s still important for you to remain careful.
It’s general knowledge that any aftermarket attachment doesn’t work with automatic car washes, so the ultimate responsibility will still be at you at the end of the day.
I Don’t Want to Remove My Bike Racks. What Should I do?
The best choice for you is to go for manual car washes or a touchless car wash. In the case of a manual wash, you’ll be careful not to damage anything and safely clean your car.
Touchless car washes are another option for you as they don’t come with any mechanical arm or brush.
All it takes is a combination of water and other self-drying chemicals to get the job done and get a squeaky-clean car.
Bike racks are a convenient accessory that can help keep your bike safe without any compromise. However, you need to make some exceptions if you want to use them safely. Removing bike racks from your car only takes a few minutes and doing so will keep your cars safe.
The next best option for you is to either go for handwashing services or a touchless car wash service.
This way, you won’t have any liability without compromising on the experience of getting a spotless car.
More Recommended Ebikes
Check out these other ebikes I've reviewed:
- Urban Arrow Ebike – Last year, I made one of the largest purchases I’ve ever made – I bought a $9,000 electric cargo bike from Urban Arrow. In my Urban Arrow review, I will discuss what it is and why I decided to buy this bike, as well as discuss how impactful a bike like this can be on your journey to financial independence.
- Troxus Explorer Step-Thru Ebike – The Troxus Explorer Step-Thru is a fat-tire ebike that I’ve had the pleasure of riding for a while now. It has amazing power, great looks, and awesome range. If you’re looking for a great fat-tire ebike that offers a lot for the price, the Troxus Explorer Step-Thru is definitely one for you to consider. Check out my Troxus Explorer Step-Thru Review.
- Hovsco HovBeta Ebike – The HovBeta is a folding ebike with great specs and a lot of interesting features, and importantly, it’s sold at a good price point. I’ve had a blast commuting with it and using it to do deliveries with DoorDash, Uber Eats, and Grubhub. Check out my Hovsco HovBeta Ebike Review.
- Vanpowers Manidae Ebike – The Vanpowers Manidae is a fat tire ebike that I’ve been riding as my primary winter commuting bike and have also been using it to do food delivery with apps like DoorDash, Uber Eats, and Grubhub. After clocking in a decent number of miles with this ebike, I wanted to write a post sharing what my experience with the Vanpowers Manidae ebike has been like. Check out my Vanpowers Manidae Review.
- Sohamo S3 Step-Thru Folding EBike Review – A Great Value Folding Ebike – The Sohamo S3 Step-Thru Folding Ebike is an entry-level folding ebike that offers a lot of value for the price point. I’ve been riding the Sohamo S3 for a while now, putting the bike through its paces, and I have to say, this bike has exceeded all of my expectations. Check out my Sohamo Review.
- KBO Flip Ebike – The KBO Flip is an excellent bike. I’ve had a great time riding it and think it’s a versatile bike that can be used for a lot of purposes and can fit a variety of lifestyles. It’s worked out great for me as a general commuter bike and as a food delivery bike. Check out my KBO Flip Review.
- Hiboy P7 Commuter Ebike – The Hiboy P7 is an excellent electric commuter bike that’s offered at an affordable price point. The range and speed of this bike are both very good, so you won’t have any trouble getting anywhere you need to go with it. As a food delivery vehicle, this is also good – with how much range it offers, you’ll be able to work all day on a single charge. Check out my Hiboy P7 Commuter Electric Bike Review.
- Himiway Escape Ebike – The Himiway Escape is an interesting bike for anyone looking for a moped-style ebike. If you’re a gig economy worker, the Himiway Escape is particularly interesting and it’s possible to think of it as an investment, especially if you can opt to do deliveries with the Himiway versus using a car. It’s not cheap, but you can definitely make your money back when you compare the mileage you’ll put on your car versus using an ebike. Check out my Himiway Escape Bike Review.
- Espin Sport Ebike – The Espin Sport is a good ebike for someone who is looking for an ebike that feels and rides more like a regular bike. There are many ebikes that are really only bikes in name. In reality, they’re basically electric mopeds. The Espin Sport, by contrast, is a bike you could probably ride without the battery and you’d feel like you’re just riding a regular bike. Check out my Espin Sport Review.
More Recommended Scooters
Check out these other scooters I've reviewed:
- Varla Eagle One Scooter – The Varla Eagle One is an excellent scooter that can make sense for a lot of people. It can work as a primary mode of transportation. You can use it to work on gig economy apps like DoorDash, Uber Eats, and Grubhub. And it can also be a recreational vehicle if you’d prefer to use it for that. Check out my Varla Eagle One Review.
- Varla Falcon Scooter – The Varla Falcon is an excellent scooter that offers a good amount of power at a lower price point compared to more powerful scooters. It’s not exactly an entry-level scooter, nor is it a high-powered scooter. I think it fits somewhere in-between those two categories – an intermediate scooter if I had to give it a category. Check out my Varla Falcon Review.
- Hiboy S2 Scooter – The Hiboy S2 is an excellent entry-level commuter scooter that's perfect for someone looking to save some money in transportation costs and improve their commute. Check out my Hiboy S2 Review.
- Hiboy S2R Scooter – The Hiboy S2R is one of the more interesting electric scooters I’ve been able to test out. It’s not a high-powered scooter, but for an everyday transport option, it’s very useful, especially given some of the unique features that it has. Indeed, for the price, the Hiboy S2R might be the best value scooter I’ve used. Check out my Hiboy S2R Review.
- GoTrax G5 Scooter – The GoTrax G5 Electric Scooter is a new commuter scooter from GoTrax that I’ve been riding for a while now. It’s a scooter that’s well-built, has a good top speed, and offers a lot of great features. And with a price point in the $500 range, it’s a scooter that offers a lot of value for the money too. Check out my GoTrax G5 Review.
- Sisigad Arrow Max Scooter – When it comes to scooters, you sometimes just need a solid, well-built, decently fast scooter to get you around. The Sisigad Arrow Max is an entry-level scooter that does exactly that. I’ve been riding it around a bunch lately – and so far – I find it to be a fun, affordable scooter that works well for commuting and getting around the city. Check out my Sisigad Arrow Max Review.
- Fucare H3 Scooter – The Fucare H3 is a fun scooter and I’ve enjoyed testing it out. For a daily commuter or quick trips or errands, the Fucare H3 is probably the scooter I’ll use. It’s portable and easy to maneuver, so it’s just easier to take on the road when I need it. Check out my Fucare H3 Scooter Review.