SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) — Raining ash from the wildfires can be seen everywhere, coating cars, houses, windows and more in the Bay Area. For car owners concerned with getting that layer of ash off their vehicles, touchless car washes are the best.
At one car wash in San Francisco’s Inner Richmond District, cars were lined up bumper to bumper and spilled onto Geary Boulevard, on Friday.
“Oh we created three lines of car wash,” said employee Shirley Magazzu.
Employee Maurico Martinez said when he began to sweep the runoff earlier this week, he noticed it wasn’t as black, and thick.
“It was clearer than today. Today is really bad,” said Martinez.
Particles of ash that can be abrasive, combined with brushes touching surfaces, can lead to scratches.
“Yeah I just dusted it off, sprayed it, and then wiped it off,” said customer Frank Taylor.
But before dusting or wiping all the ash with a brush, car-care experts say thoroughly rinsing with water from the roof first, then working down the sides, to the panels and wheels, ensures the loose dirt and ash doesn’t re-coat a clean surface.
“It was definitely an experience I have never seen so much ash covering it, but it comes off pretty easy,” said Jermaine Thomas.
Car care-experts warn that leaving ash-covered cars outside on wet nights or foggy mornings can lead to chemical etching and leave marks on cars.
While car washes are seeing long lines, it was hard to spot window washers.
“When the air quality is dangerous enough, I don’t want my employees to be vulnerable to it,” said Brian Alberstat of Window Doctor in San Francisco.
Alberstat says Window Doctor got calls from clients to delay regular services until the bad air and ash disappear.