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Discussion Starter #1
I am a newbie who recently bought an Element LX. Because of it's overall shape and large mirrors I am hesitant to take my Element trough a drive through car wash. To complicate matters I also have these small awnings(?) hanging out a little from the top of the front windows. I guess they are supposed to keep out rain when you crack a window. Can anyone offer advice as to whether it would be okay to take this vehicle through a car wash?

Thanks in advance... Bob
 

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I take mine thru our cash wash at work weekly. No worries at all. I have door visors on mine as well.

Sent from my SM-T530NU using Tapatalk
 

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i second lizzurd's responses.
(didn't need a second, as his responses are almost always right on, but since you're new to the club, you may not have had a chance to learn that yet.)
our Elements, and the CR-V and the Nissan Pathfinder before them all had window visors that had no problem going through car washes.
 

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If car washes were that aggressive you couldn't even take a vehicle through one that has roof top cargo bars installed, and the side mirrors would be ripped off.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Well, I'm glad I got your reply for two reasons. The first of course is that it tells me what I was hoping to hear. Secondly, I notice that you said you have a bike rack for your Element. I am an avid cyclist and was considering putting a hitch for a bike rack on my Element. We can get two bikes inside standing up with no problem but we occasionally need a little extra room inside. For my old vehicle I used one of those el cheapo racks that strapped down on the exterior with straps hooking on the lip of the trunk on top and to the umber on the bottom. Since I want to keep my new baby in prefect condition I was afraid the straps might scratch the paint and was also concerned that the tailgate on the Element is plastic and not metal. Your opinion please. If I go with the hitch mounted rack I would want to removed the rack a couple of times a week when it was not in use. Does the hitch mounted rack come on and off easily?

Thanks in advance... Bob
7 time past President, Gainesville Cycling Club (FL)
 

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Yes hitch mount racks are easy to put on and take off
 

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I've had my E for almost 2 years and have been running it through several times a week (unlimited wash plan). The only issue I ever had were the step bar panels that stick out from the side of the vehicle. Not always but every so often it would get caught in the path of some of the equipment. Damaged the side steps (which I never really liked) and when the body shop they sent me to said they couldn't find any of the EOM steps I just had them removed and I worked a deal to get 3 months of free washes. I've never had an issue since the side steps were taken off. And no issue with the antenna.
 

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I don't have a problems with the automatic car washes, but have always washed the Element myself. Have taken it through a car wash zero times in the last 6 1/2 years that I have owned it. Just need a little 2 step ladder to reach the areas of the roof. Might not be the best one, but I always use Turtle Wax Zip Wax car wash when cleaning the Element. Other than myself, I almost never see anybody in my neighborhood washing their own car anymore.
 

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I don't have a problems with the automatic car washes, but have always washed the Element myself. Have taken it through a car wash zero times in the last 6 1/2 years that I have owned it. Just need a little 2 step ladder to reach the areas of the roof. Might not be the best one, but I always use Turtle Wax Zip Wax car wash when cleaning the Element. Other than myself, I almost never see anybody in my neighborhood washing their own car anymore.
I do.
Never seen the inside of a car wash.
 

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I drove my Element through a car wash last month and it broke the antenna off. I found this thread searching "antenna" to find the best way to fix it. Looks like I'll have to search out the "no touch" car washes from now on. This was the kind of drive through car wash with those big spinny things smacking the car from all directions. Radio reception sucks now.
 

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Ive always just washed my cars by hand. Seems to me that the auto car washes never get it clean enough to my standards.
 

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Except in winter, I usually wash my E carefully by hand. Foam sprayer and microfiber with warmed water.

In some winters l've used an local automatic touchless wash for my 2004, but last year it was warm enough to hose off the salt of my 2008 with warm water in my driveway.

I have had the worst results in washes where men rub wipe the body down at the end of the cycle with rags, especially when they have "detail" the interior. So much for "touchless". :-( Avoid automatic washers with tip jars.
 
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