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Heads Up! Heavy Vehicle Damage Going Through Car Wash

Automatic car washes. I’ve often used the touchless washes, you drive in, on your own, and your car is sprayed and soaped and rinsed. Not one piece of machinery touches your car.

Well today I went to a gas station, filled up, and purchased a car wash. I entered the point of no return- “Enter your Code”. There is no way to back out, and at this point, my driver’s side tires were now on a track. A sign said to put it in neutral. I did, and nothing happened. For about a minute. So I put it in drive and just touched forward enough for the track to catch my tire. Put it back in neutral and immediately the left side lifted so I was on a slant. I had the thought “if this was dangerous, it wouldn’t be legal”.

Within moments, my car sets down hard and then begins to twist. I assume that my front driver tire dropped over the other side of the track. No it’s stuck. And the brushes are pushing my back end to an angle. The machines are going but the car is sideways and going nowhere. I put it in drive, nothing. I put it in reverse, nothing. I’m stuck. I don’t have any way out, the machines are going. So I just tried to rock my car and finally ended up back on the track and it sent me out as though nothing happened. As soon as I put it into drive, something was wrong with the wheel.

Fast forward 9 hours, my car is in a body shop, and I’m driving a rental for who knows how long. There is not only the visible body damage, I have no idea yet what damage was done to the underside.

STAY AWAY FROM ANY CAR WASHES THAT HAVE MACHINERY WHICH COMES IN CONTACT WITH YOUR CAR.

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