Do you wax? (Your leased car)

I only wax our owned cars every few years, weather and road conditions not too harsh here. Although i wash monthly, if i know i’m going to turn this in at lease end, how much TLC is really necessary? Will it make any difference to the inspector and ultimately my security deposit in the end?

Bmw on a 3 yr lease if that makes any diff.

I usually give my car a full work up after the winter. I don’t mind spending some money to keep the car looking good, even if it’s just a lease.

Man if its a lease, bare minimum maintenance and wash every few months.


What NY13 said. Modern cars don’t seem to rust much anymore, and if they do, it sure as hell isn’t going to happen in the first few years. I never wax cars anymore, and barely wash them other than the post-winter time to get the salt off.

A short answer, it shouldn’t matter much. They usually state in the lease pamphlet what kind and what extent of damage is acceptable. I live in pretty mild climate too but also don’t mind giving the car a little TLC, I love cars and don’t treat them as point A to point B. Depending if the residual is fairly low like in $15 k range and there is a sliver of possibility of me purchasing after the lease, i’ll clay and polymer polish the paint and take care of exterior and interior plastic. If residual is higher i’ll just wax it once during the lease. One of my cars was returned by my family when I wasn’t here and I am sure nobody cleaned of washed it and it went trough Ally check or whoever they contract just fine, YMMV

I like to drive clean cars, regardless of who owns them.


No hand wax on a lease but I do like my car to shine so I run through the car wash often. If I owned it I would probably avoid those places but it’s a lease so I’m not too concerned.

I do not hand wax or clay on leased cars, but I do go through touch-less car wash bi-weekly and use spray wax. Total time should be less than 30 minutes every 2 weeks.

For owned cars, I spend more time than with my wife on bed.

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I don’t specifically clean / wash / wax cars before turning them in.
Trying to wax them ( regardless owning / leasing ) twice a year. Easier to clean snow in the winter as well as bugs after Florida trips. Aquapel glass treatment twice a year as well for all windows (not just windshield).

OP is concerned with issues at lease return. Leasing companies know that you won’t return a car in new condition and allow for “normal wear and tear”.

Bmw (which is what you drive) is very lenient and whether or not you wax won’t matter at all to bmw. They care about the size of any large scratches/dings. You can wait until closer to lease end where they will send you a plastic wheel that you can hold over any scratches or dings to see if it falls within normal wear or just call bmwfs and have them send it to you now if you are concerned. Again, waxing zero issue with bmw based on my experience. Smaller scratches and dings also not a problem, they are quite lenient with that type of damage.

I wash my cars every weekend, weather permitting. I do it myself at home. And I’ll give them a wax once a month or so.

Doesn’t matter if the car is leased or owned, I want it to look good. I’m also a neat freak so the interior of my cars is always spotless.

In winter, I’ll go through the basic $6 with $25 fill up gas station car wash after a big snowfall when it gets really messy. There is no salt used where I live so no need to spend money for the under carriage wash, which has to be one of the biggest ripoffs in the car business, lol

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haven’t washed my own car since i was a teenager…hats off to you, you couldn’t pay me to do that anymore.

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I like doing it.
I also cut my own grass for the same reason.

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if you’re going to tell us next that you do your own oil change i might have a stroke!!! :sunglasses:

LOL. No, I haven’t done that in a while. Too messy.

+1. What’s the point of owning (or leasing) nice things, if they aren’t going to look nice. Once a year, polish + sealant + wax. Maintenance wash every 2-3 weeks depending on level of dirt. Compound if any major scratches develop.

you guys would have a heart attack if you saw what my car looks like after Irma (no damage just REALLY DIRTY from 120mph + winds) and i haven’t bothered washing it.

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Is this why your wife spends so much time at her friends house? LOL! :joy::joy::joy:

Speaking of car washes, there was an article about Haitian immigrants in Mexico that had this in it. Ignoring the main subject of Haitians in Mexico…this can’t be real can it? $950 car washes? WTF???

“TIJUANA, Mexico (AP) — Jose Luis Millan found a new crop of star employees at an upscale Tijuana car wash where customers cross the border from the U.S. to pay up to $950 to have their prized possessions steamed and scrubbed for hours. They’re never late, always hustle and come in on days off to learn new skills, traits that he says make them a model for their Mexican counterparts.”

Love to keep the car clean wether its a lease or buy at the end of the day I’m paying for it.
I change oil myself as well. :smile: