5 Reasons To Use Iron Remover Before or After Wash

83 / 100

Iron remover helps restore vehicles to their original condition by removing stubborn iron deposits. Whether you need a non-toxic alternative or a powerful remedy, there is the right process that suits your needs.

So, should you use Iron Remover before or after washing

You need to use an iron remover after washing your vehicle. To ensure safe and effective car detailing, use different iron removers such as iron filters, oxidizers, reverse osmosis systems, ion exchange, or softeners. Following directions properly will help to maximize the effectiveness of the applications

So, keep reading for all the details!

When Should You Use Iron Remover Before or After Washing?

It is recommended to use an iron remover after washing, as the heat created by the washing process can cause the iron remover to be less effective. If the iron remover is used prior to washing, the iron in the fabric may react with the detergent and cause discoloration.

It is suggested to follow a three-stage car detailing the process for optimal results. Here is how the process works:

  • Before washing, pre-wash the car with a specially formulated cleaner to remove dirt and debris. 
  • Next, wash the car using car shampoo and a microfiber mitt or cloth. 
  • In the final stage, you have to use an iron remover and clay bar to decontaminate the surface. The process is about removing any contaminants that may have accumulated before waxing or polishing. 

With these applications, the iron remover protects the car’s paint or clear coat from further damage. And it also ensures that the wax or polish applied afterward sticks properly.

Is Iron Remover Necessary?

It is important to use an iron remover after car washing to prevent rust and paint damage. The application process eliminates any iron particles that have become embedded in the car’s surface. It is essential to remove contaminants before paint correction and protection. 

Iron particles can cause rust and damage the car’s paint, so it is important to remove them during the application process.

With that, you may be tempted to use purple power on car paint, which is not recommended for various reasons. Always, remember to stick to the basics and introduce iron fallout removal which is sufficient to serve your needs. 

As all related products are listed, let’s get into the details of how to use different types of removals more maximum benefits. 

Why Iron Remover Isn’t Used Before Wash 

It is not a good idea to use an iron remover before a car wash because the process is not as effective at removing iron deposits as it is after a car wash. Iron removers are designed to react with the iron deposits left behind by the car wash process and can be more corrosive than a pre-wash. 

The pre-wash process can help to remove dirt, grime, and other contaminants that can block the iron remover from doing its job. Therefore, it is best to use an iron remover after the car wash has been completed.

5 Reasons Why You Should Use Iron Remover After Wash

Although, when to use iron remover is often a personal preference, it is mostly suggested to use it after washing. And, there are five reasons behind the suggestion.

Reason 1: Eliminates Ferrous Iron From Water With Iron Filters

Iron filters are used to eliminate ferrous iron from water, typically in residential and commercial settings, and are used for cars also. Basically, you have to remove iron fallout from a car wash, and to do that, here are the essential points you should consider: 

  • These filters trap the iron particles in their media. This reduces iron in the water, leaving the car wash free from any iron residue.
  • Iron filters can be utilized to reduce manganese, hydrogen sulfide, and sediment from water. 
  • To work with the process, rinse the car to remove dirt, and mix warm water and dish soap. 
  • Scrub with an iron filter, rinse the filter in clean water, and scrub the car again. 
  • Dry with a microfiber towel and check for remaining iron fallout. 

You can acquire this product for getting the job done, Car Wash Water Filter. A multi-stage and final spotless rinse is included in this bundle.

So, it can be said that Iron filters provide a simple, easy-to-use solution to removing iron from car washes and other water supplies. This makes the car ready for a good painting finish application.

iron remover after washing
Source: Detailing Emporium

Reason 2: Cleans With Oxidizers

Oxidizers are often used to remove iron fallout from cars after a car wash. When you are ready to work with this type of removal process, you have to consider these points:

  • This chemical compound causes a reaction with oxygen, which oxidizes the iron particles on the vehicle’s surface and changes them into iron oxide. 
  • The iron oxide is then washed away with water, resulting in a clean vehicle. 
  • The vehicle is then dried off and waxed to shield it from further harm. 
  • Before applying a wax or sealant to protect the vehicle from future contamination, it is important to clean the vehicle with a pressure washer.
  • Then, use a pre-soak or foam application to loosen any iron fallout or other contaminants.
  • This should be followed by an iron remover product to break down any iron oxide deposits on the paint. 
  • Once the oxidizer has been swilled off and the vehicle is dried with a microfiber towel, buff the vehicle with a soft cloth to remove any remaining fallout or residue. 

And so, the job is well done!

The application provides a good foundation for any after-painting work such as silicone removal from car paint. It is also useful for removing dirt, dust, and other debris from car paint, thus ensuring a smooth and even finish.

Also, buy this product, Stoner Car Care. A quality remover of Tar, Sap & Asphalt

Cleans With Oxidizers
Source: Prep My Car

Reason 3: Eliminates Iron Fallout Through Reverse Osmosis Systems

Reverse osmosis systems are a type of filtration process utilized to eliminate iron fallout from the surface of a car following a wash. This is achieved by passing the car wash water through a sequence of filters, which captures the iron particles from the water. 

You can assistance from this product, Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration. Its a faucet attached to a 4-Stage Reverse Osmosis Water Filter System

Generally, a three-stage system is employed for iron fallout extraction. The three-stage system consists of a pre-treatment stage, a separation stage, and a filtration stage. 

The process works something like this:

  1. The initial stage of the system removes the bigger particles and sediment from the water. 
  2. The second stage utilizes a special type of filter material that aids in trapping the tinier iron particles. 
  3. The third stage involves a membrane that further eliminates the iron particles from the water. 

Reverse osmosis systems are highly efficient at swiftly filtering large amounts of water, and are particularly effective in eliminating iron fallout from the car wash water.

Reason 4: Removes Brake Dust With Ion Exchange 

Ion exchange is a process in which ions are exchanged between two substances. It is commonly used in water treatment systems to remove harmful and unwanted particles from drinking water. 

In car detailing, it is used to remove iron fallout from the paint surface. Iron fallout is the result of brake dust and other fine particles that adhere to the car’s paint during driving.

Here is a product you can buy, Car Vacuum Cleaner – A 12V High-Power Handheld Portable Car Device. The vacuum ensures proper dust cleaning in no time. 

The application of an ion exchange iron fallout remover after a car wash is simple. Just like before, for this particular type of treatment, there are a few points to notice:

  • The remover is applied to the paint surface, typically using a foam applicator. 
  • The product is left to dwell on the paint surface for a few minutes and then washed off with a high-pressure rinse or a pressure washer.
  • It removes iron fallout from the paint surface, leaving the paint free of harmful particles. 
  • It also helps to protect the paint from future contamination by creating a protective barrier that prevents further adhesion of brake dust and other particles. 

It can be verified that Ion exchange is an effective and efficient way to remove iron fallout and other unwanted particles from your car’s paint surface. It is a simple and easy process that can be done quickly and efficiently.

Removes Brake Dust With Ion Exchange
Source: Ultimate Finish

Reason 5: Removes Contaminants With Softeners

A softener is a type of fallout iron remover that is used after a car wash to remove any remaining iron particles from the surface of the car. It is ideal for removing any stubborn contaminants that may have stuck to the car during the wash. 

A good quality product that relates to this particular type is Sonax Iron Fallout Remover. It safely removes rust and iron from car exteriors without harming the paint.

Some common practices and functionalities involving softeners would include:

  • Softeners are usually applied to the car’s surface after the wash and left on for a few minutes to allow the softener to work its magic. 
  • The softener breaks down the iron particles and allows them to be rinsed away with water, just like any other type of iron remover. 
  • To use softener on a car after a wash, start by spraying the car with the softener, ensuring that the entire surface is covered. 
  • Allow the softener to sit for a few minutes to allow it to work its magic.
  • Rinse off the softener with a pressure washer or a hose and then dry the car with a microfiber cloth. 
  • Finally, wax the car to protect the paint and give it a glossy shine.

The benefit of using a softener is that it prevents the iron particles from sticking to the car’s surface, which can lead to rust and other damage. Softeners may not be as popular as other types of removers, but it also helps to make the car’s finish look brighter and more vibrant.

How Often Should You Use An Iron Remover? 

Iron Remover should only be used when needed, such as once or twice a year, or for heavy decontamination before applying a ceramic coating. The frequency of using an iron remover on your car will depend on how well you take care of it.

If your car is regularly parked near a railway or has worn brake pads that produce a lot of dust, you should use it more regularly. Otherwise, It should not be included in the regular wash routine.

Iron and fallout removers are a great choice for car detailing. This is because they effectively identify and remove iron deposits from the surface, leaving it looking brand new. But, overuse is perhaps not a good idea as it may damage the exterior paint. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Is Iron Remover Safe for Paint?

Yes, iron removers are safe for paint, as long as you follow the instructions on the product. Iron removers are designed to be used on painted surfaces, so they should not damage the paint if you use them properly.

What precautions should I take when using an iron remover?

When using an iron remover after a car wash, make sure to wear suitable protective clothing, such as gloves and eyewear. Use the product in a well-ventilated area, and always keep the product away from children and pets.

Does iron remover prevent rust?

No, iron remover does not prevent rust. It is used to remove rust that is already present on a surface. To prevent rust, it is important to keep metal surfaces clean and dry and to apply a rust inhibitor or protective coating.


Whether to use iron remover before or after the wash is sufficiently answered here. It is best to use an iron remover after washing. This is because the iron remover will be more effective when it is applied to fabrics that have been cleaned and prepped for the treatment. 

We wish you all the best in your journey and it is time for us to leave!


As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


I am a professional automotive and car mechanic. I have been in the industry for 15+ years. At the moment I have 3 garages. Every day dozens of cars come to our repair shops that are damaged in a very short period of time. The main reason for this is not taking a proper care of the car.

Leave a Comment