Is It Safe to Dry Your Car With a Leaf Blower?

When you think about it, most people already have leaf blowers lying around their garages. So, why spend more money buying a car dryer if a leaf blower would do the trick? But, can a leaf blower really dry your car, and how safe is it?

It’s perfectly safe to dry your car with a leaf blower. It does a wonderful job of drying your car quickly without leaving any water or swirl marks on your car’s paint. Leaf blowers are an inexpensive version of car dryers and are much safer than drying a car in the sun.

In the rest of the article, I’ll explain the difference between leaf blowers and car dryers and why it’s safe to use leaf blowers when drying your car. Additionally, I’ll explain how to dry a car with a leaf blower safely and what are some of the best leaf blowers for drying your car.

Leaf Blowers vs. Car Dryers

First of all, leaf blowers are very similar to car dryers. Their function is to expel columns of air towards something that needs to be removed.

Both of these machines have their function described in their names. Leaf blowers are used to remove leaves from a front yard, and car dryers remove water drops from a car after washing.

Some car dryers can use hot or cold air, while leaf blowers don’t heat the air they expel.

So, if the basic function of car dryers and leaf blowers is similar, why would we need one for leaves and the other for cars? The answer is that we simply don’t. Leaf blowers perform the same function and can be used for drying a car.

The great thing about leaf blowers is that they are generally cheaper than car dryers. Moreover, almost everyone has a leaf blower somewhere in their garage. Drying your car with a leaf blower is effective and more economical than buying a car dryer.

Types of Leaf Blowers

There are three main types of leaf blowers based on the way their power is produced:

  • Gas leaf blowers. They are generally the most powerful of the three. But you’ll constantly need to think about the fuel, which can be costly and is not climate-friendly.
  • Corded electric leaf blowers. With corded leaf blowers, you generally have enough power to dry a car. All you need to worry about is the cord that follows you as you try to remove water drops from your car.
  • Cordless electric leaf blowers. These leaf blowers are dependent on the battery’s life, making them generally weaker in power compared to the other types.

Another important element that you need to have in mind when choosing a leaf blower is the airflow, or CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute), and the speed of that airflow (mph). These characteristics will affect the power of your leaf blower and, ultimately, your future costs when it comes to using that leaf blower. 

Why It’s Safe to Dry a Car Using a Leaf Blower

It is extremely important that the car is dried quickly. Some people think leaving your car to dry slowly in the sun is completely safe. After all, it is probably the cheapest option, plus it’s climate-friendly.

But, leaving your car to dry in the sun can do more harm than good. For starters, you end up with thousands of water stains all over your car, which makes it look dirty.

When water evaporates slowly, it leaves minerals that are harmful to car paint. Over time, those minerals eat into the paint and permanently damage the paintwork. This is called chemical etching.

So, drying your car quickly by removing water drops is the safest option. Some people opt for pieces of cloth or towels to dry their cars. That’s fine, but make sure to use microfiber towels. However, drying your car with a microfiber towel can take a lot of time.

Apart from that, you’ll need a new microfiber towel after every wash of your car. This can take a lot of energy and money in the long run. So, you can actually save some money by using a leaf blower to dry your car.

Additionally, towels can sometimes leave swirl marks on your car. This is the last thing anybody needs just after washing their car. You don’t have to worry about swirl marks with leaf blowers because you never physically need to touch your car while drying it.

Nonetheless, if you need an alternative to drying your car using a leafblower, I recommend Chemical Guys Microfiber Towels from Amazon. These towels won’t scratch the paint from your car and are great for absorbing water.

How to Safely Dry a Car Using a Leaf Blower

There are some instances when using a leaf blower can cause headaches. Even though leaf blowers are safe to use for drying a car, you should always have in mind that they are not made for that purpose. If not used properly, leaf blowers can create the opposite effect and make drying a car quite a challenge.

Below are some tips to help you use a leaf blower efficiently when drying your car:

Always Use Leaf Blowers With an Air Filter Inside of Them

Leaf blowers can become dirty if you use them for typical yard work. What’s more, the air that is propelled from those leaf blowers is often unclean and full of dust.

Therefore, it’s important that your leaf blower has an air filter inside. This will ensure that all the dirt and dust doesn’t end up on your freshly washed car. It’s also better if you clean your leaf blower before using it to dry your car.

Don’t Point the Leaf Blower to the Ground

If you’re washing and drying your car in some space that is not particularly clean, the safest option is not to point the leaf blower toward the ground.

Dust and dirt could rise from the ground and stick to your car. So, it’s important that you avoid pointing your leaf blower down. Try to keep the nozzle of your leaf blower straight in front of you.

Another option would be to dry your car on a clean surface.

Avoid Touching Your Car With the Leaf Blower

Some car dryers have rubber nozzles to avoid scratching or damaging a car if you accidentally hit some parts. On the other hand, leaf blowers use plastic nozzles. That’s why you should always keep a leaf blower a few inches away from the body of your car.

You should also always hold the nozzle at an angle. This will ensure that water drops can actually slide down your car. If you hold the nozzle of your leaf blower facing your car directly, water drops won’t move much. They’ll just spread in all directions, which can make things worse.

Choose a Leaf Blower That Is Powerful Enough for Drying

Some leaf blowers are simply not as strong to successfully remove water from a car. The engine’s power does not create enough speed (mph) of airflow.

The nozzle that’s attached to a leaf blower plays an important part in this regard. The diameter of the nozzle actually affects the speed of the airflow in your leaf blower.

Any leaf blower with an airspeed of over 100 mph should do just fine. Additionally, the CFM should be around 600 for a leaf blower that is powerful enough to dry a car.

Dry Your Car in the Open if You’re Using a Gas Leaf Blower

For those leaf blowers that use gasoline to produce power, it is best to use them in the open. Burning gas produces excess fumes that can possibly be harmful to inhale.

The safest option is to dry your car somewhere in the open where fumes can’t get trapped. Gas leaf blowers shouldn’t cause any harmful effects in the open air. On top of that, you’ll have more space to move around since leaf blowers can be tricky to operate in closed spaces.

Even though gas leaf blowers are more powerful than some electric leaf blowers, they are less environmentally friendly because of their fuel.

What Is the Best Leaf Blower for Drying a Car?

The best leaf blower for drying a car is the WORX WG520 leaf blower. It is a corded leaf blower, which means it is more powerful than a battery leaf blower and is environmentally friendly, as opposed to gas leaf blowers.

WORX WG520 is quite light, only 3.27 pounds. More importantly, it produces an airspeed of 110 mph, and its CFM is 600. This makes it perfect for drying your car.

Final Words

You don’t have to spend money in a car wash to dry your car properly. And if you don’t have a car dryer, that’s fine. Using a leaf blower that will do the same job is perfectly safe. Plus, using a leaf blower you already own can save you some money.

If you have a leaf blower that’s powerful enough, you can easily dry your car with it. Ensure your leaf blower has an air filter built into it, and always keep it a few inches away from your car. That way, you’ll avoid accidentally scratching your car’s paint.

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