Whether you're looking for an air blower, chamois, towel or squeegee to use as a car dryer, we have our top picks for each.
It all started with Gran Turismo. From those early PlayStation days, Sean was drawn to anything with four wheels. Prior to joining the Roadshow team, he was a freelance contributor for Motor Authority, The Car Connection and Green Car Reports. As for what's in the garage, Sean owns a 2016 Chevrolet SS, and yes, it has Holden badges.
You don't need to dig out an old bath towel from the closet to dry your car after a wash. There are a number of wonderful products to help you dry your car and they make the process far easier. The best car dryers also save you some time along the way. There are a few different drying options to have in your detailer kit, so we rounded up the best car dryer tools in the hopes it makes keeping your car clean a simpler task. We also share some handy car-drying tips below.
If you want the best way to dry a car off after a wash, look no further than an air blower. And if you want the best air blower, you'd best check out Metro's Master Blaster. It moves air at 58,500 feet per minute and provides a seriously powerful blast of air to wipe away water and droplets from a freshly washed car to reduce water spots. If you routinely wax your car, this will be even easier.
The process is almost 100% touch-free, which saves a car from potential scratches or swirl marks from a chamois towel or microfiber cloth, and the unit comes with a reusable filter to keep maintenance nice and easy. It comes with five attachments to work water out of crevices and rolls to make it super easy to use. The price isn't for everyone, but an air dryer is absolutely the best way to dry a car after cleaning instead of a cloth and squeegee.
Adam's air blower is a lot like the Metro unit, but it's a little more affordable, which makes it our runner-up. Adam's unit moves less air at 58,000 feet per minute, and overall, we preferred the way the Master Blaster operated. Both are great machines, however.
Adam's air dryer tosses in a few attachments for whatever style of drying you're looking for and the unit also rolls like our top pick, which makes maneuvering around the car super easy. We also like the long hose this car blower unit comes with. If you can't swallow the Master Blaster's price tag (or find it on sale), you won't be disappointed with Adam's unit.
Air dryers aren't for everyone's wallet, but there are other alternatives that are way friendlier to anyone's budget. That's why we need to talk about The Absorber. This is a synthetic chamois drying towel product from CleanTools that does a downright amazing job.
You can use the chamois like a cotton towel to dry off areas of the car, or spread it across a larger part of the car like the roof or hood and drag it to suck up water left without swirl marks after a car wash. In both instances, the absorbency of the chamois cloth leaves a nearly dry surface that should take just a few minutes to totally clear up before you move on to claying, wax or calling it a day.
The Absorber makes drying the car a simple process and it should be on your shopping list.
The Absorber is the top dog, but Mighty Cleaner's Shammy Towel isn't in the dog house at all. The chamois cloth does a great job picking up water and not leaving much moisture behind. The company also offers its product in a two pack, which might make it a better deal if you want a couple of these around for drying duties. I know I like to have one per car hanging around the house at the moment.
If a shammy isn't your style, there's nothing wrong with a microfiber drying towel outfitted specifically for car drying duty. Liquid X's Rapid Dry microfiber towels are top notch absorbers that do a heck of a job drying a car after a wash. This large towel might take more than one of them, but in our experience, you can get away with just the one because this microfiber towel is massive. One microfiber car drying towel measures 50 inches by 30 inches, so yes, it covers a large area and scoops up water well along the way. Or buy two microfiber drying towels if you want to make sure your drying needs are covered.
The Liquid X car towel is expensive, but it works well. If you need a more budget-friendly option, Zwipes Microfiber Waffle Drying Towel comes in a two pack and it's a lot cheaper. But, in our experience, absorbency isn't quite as good with the waffle weave towel as the Liquid X microfiber per pass. Nevertheless, it's not a bad drying aid to consider.
The final option we recommend for drying a car is a squeegee, and Huiscu's water blade is our top pick. It's sturdy, features a flexible blade to make swiping away water simple and measures 12 inches for a good-sized drying footprint with each pass. In our experience, it worked well and didn't feel flimsy when wiping away water.
It may be a personal preference, but Great Barrier's Water Blade features a stiffer, dual-blade design that in our experience worked well, but not as well, as our top pick. That's not to say it didn't do the job because it still lands as a runner-up choice. It's also a little cheaper, so there's an added bonus for you if you like this design better.
A waxed car is way easier to dry: Save yourself some energy and invest in the time to apply a coat of wax to your car's finish after a thorough car wash. After that, water beads super well and it becomes way easier to dry a car off no matter what tool you use.
Watch out for debris caught in chamois, towels or squeegees: These tools work well, but there's always the chance they can pick something up like dirt particles. Then, as you wipe a car off, you rub contaminants on the paintwork. Worse, you could create scratches. Just be on the lookout to keep your car's paint looking great.
Air is your friend: Even if you can't afford an air blower, other tools to blow air into crevices can push water out that will eventually dribble out and streak on the paint.
Don't let the car sit in the sun: Why? Water spots. The sun will dry water and leave gray shadows behind on paintwork, especially if you're not using completely filtered water. Try to dry a car off after a car wash in the shade if you can.
Dry off with our favorite tools
Any one of the car drying tools above will make the process mighty easier. We can guarantee that, and with something for every budget, there's no reason not to start enjoying a simpler drying process.