Can You Use a Leaf Blower To Dry Your Car?

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Drying your car after washing it is extremely important. And besides typical methods for drying cars, you may think of using a leaf blower to dry your car. But can leaf blowers be used to dry a car? That’s a question I’m going to answer in this post.

Key Takeaways:

  • A leaf blower isn’t the best way to dry a car, but you can use it for that purpose.
  • If you decide to use a leaf blower, use one that has an air filter inside to prevent dust from getting on your car.
  • Improper use of a leaf blower can even scratch your car’s paint.
  • Pet hair dryers are a much better and more affordable alternative.

Using Leaf Blower To Dry a Car – Yes or No?

using a leaf blower to dry a car, illustration

Let me get straight to the point. Yes, leaf blowers can be used to dry your car after washing it. However, it doesn’t mean that I recommend you do that.

Leaf blowers aren’t created for drying vehicles, meaning that you can get much better results by using other tools or products specifically created for drying vehicles.

Leaf blowers, while having a high airflow, have wide nozzles that aren’t best at removing water from cars. So, the problem will occur when you try to dry all the nooks and crannies around your car (wheels, edges, etc.). You won’t have that direct pressure that’s needed to get the water from those places.

Advantages Of Using Leaf Blower To Dry Your Car

Using a leaf blower for drying your car has two advantages:

  • It’s easier than drying with a microfiber towel. When you use a shammy or microfiber towel, you need to rub the vehicle’s surface carefully so that you don’t leave any streaks. It takes more time and effort than drying with a leaf blower.
  • It takes less time to dry a car. It will take you longer to dry off the surface by hand than with a leaf blower because you have to be careful not to leave any streaks on the vehicle’s body. A leaf blower can have your car dry in minutes.

Cons Of Using Leaf Blower For Drying Vehicles

Here are four main cons of using leaf blowers:

  • Leaf blowers tend to be heavy. They’re not exactly something you can hold up in one hand. It requires a bit of strength and grip to control the machine. If you’re not used to lifting weights or working out, then it’s probably best to use a towel instead.
  • Leaf blowers are dirty and full of dust and oils. I know that you’ve already washed your car, but who knows what could be happening inside of your leaf blower? It’s easy to spread dirt around if you aren’t careful accidentally.
  • You should be very careful not to touch the paint on your car while using a leaf blower. If you aren’t careful, you might end up damaging it in ways that can’t be fixed with any product.
  • It’s hard to blow off the water from nooks and crannies. A drying towel or air compressor is better for this job because you can really get into those small spaces without worrying about scratching anything.

What Type Of Leaf Blower Is Suitable For Drying Cars?

gas powered leaf blower

A lightweight leaf blower that produces a high volume of air will do the job the best. You will want to look at leaf blowers with around 300 CFM and weigh under 10 pounds.

Most gas-powered leaf blowers produce the most CFM but are larger in size and weight, and this can be a problem when using them for hours straight. Also, they tend to be dirtier since there are oils and fuels inside.

The ideal combination of power and size is in an electric leaf blower that runs off a battery. Some models can produce around 300 CFM while only weighing 8 pounds or less.

If you purchase an electric leaf blower, make sure it comes with a quality air filter to prevent dust and dirt from damaging the motor over time.

Important notice!

If you decide to use a leaf blower to dry your car, you should only use it for drying vehicles. Don’t use it for other tasks in the yard, such as blowing leaves, debris, and lawn clippings.

How To Dry a Car With a Leaf Blower

Even though I recommend drying your car by using other methods, here’s a quick guide for all of you who still want to use a leaf blower to dry your vehicles. But before you start, you should know that it’s only possible to successfully dry vehicles that have waxes or sealants applied. Otherwise, the water won’t go off the car easily.

Step 1: Pretest the Leaf Blower

The first thing you will want to do is plug in your leaf blower and test that it powers on correctly. If you have a cordless leaf blower, just try it somewhere away from the vehicle. This way you can ensure that it is fully functional before you begin drying your car.

Step 2: Dry the Car

Once everything is ready, dry the car by using the leaf blower to blow water off of the surface. The goal is to remove all visible droplets of water to prevent them from streaking or staining the paint job of your vehicle.

Start by standing on one side of your car and blowing in short bursts across the entire length of the vehicle. Always start from the top to the bottom. When you get to the other side, walk around and repeat this process until you have blown water off of all sides of your vehicle.

When drying with a leaf blower, try not to blow directly on areas where there might be dust particles (like under your car) since they could get blown onto wet surfaces and cause scratches when they dry out later on.

Step 3: Finish Up

When you are finished drying your vehicle, unplug the leaf blower, take an air filter out, thoroughly clean it, and then store your leaf blower in a safe place where it cannot accidentally get dirty, knocked over, or damaged.

What’s The Best Way To Dry The Car?

There are two main schools of thought on how to dry your car:

  • using an air compressor or
  • using a special drying towel made of microfiber

In my opinion, both of these options are much better and safer than drying your car by using a leaf blower. Personally, I always dry vehicles with a dedicated drying towel.

Drying towels (check my recommendations) are made from microfibers; they’re incredibly soft and can soak a lot of water. By using a high-quality microfiber drying towel, you won’t even have to squeeze the water from it until you dry the vehicle (except for extremely large cars such as SUVs, etc.).

Think About Buying a Pet Hair Dryer

If you still don’t want to dry your car by using an air compressor or a drying towel, I suggest you do this. Instead of using a leaf blower, I suggest you buy yourself a pet hairdryer for drying your vehicles. They are powerful enough to do the job properly yet gentle enough not to scratch or damage anything on the car.

They usually come with different nozzle attachments for different areas on the dog’s body, but the ones that come with flat nozzles are perfect for drying cars.

Dog Hair Dryer Blower for Grooming - Professional High Velocity 4.5HP Blow Dryer for Dogs - Pet...
Amazon Prime

I suggest you check out the Dog Blow Dryer above. It’s small yet powerful enough to safely clean your car. And the most important thing, it’s a much better and safer method than using a leaf blower.


And there you have it! A leaf blower can help you dry a car, but there are safer ways to do so.

If you’re in a rush (and who isn’t these days?), then wringing out an air compressor is the best way to quickly get your car dry without damaging the finish. Of course, if you don’t have an air compressor, you should dry the car with a proven old-fashioned technique – a microfiber drying towel.

If you need a full guide on how to wash a car, I recommend checking my post where I share all the secrets, tips, and tricks that I have learned over the past few years.

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