How to Make Snow Foam Car Wash? – 2 Simple Methods

Written by

Bruce Sonnier


Marcus Dutton

how to make snow foam car wash

Snow foam works wonders in car cleaning with its foaming properties that help soften and lift contaminants off a car’s surface. It allows easy cleaning without leaving scratches. But it can be costly.

The great thing is, you can still enjoy the benefits of a car snow foam wash without spending much by following this affordable DIY snow machine fluid recipe in this article.

Read on to learn how to make snow foam car wash with ingredients you most likely already have at home or would cost less than a commercial snow foam.

How to Make Plain Snow Foam Car Wash


What to Prepare

When making snow foam for car washing, accuracy is key. Make sure to use the exact amount of the snow foam ingredients to achieve a high foam car wash formulation.

  • A measuring cup
  • Dishwashing soap, baby shampoo, adult conditioner – about ¼ cup (60 ml)
  • Baking soda or white vinegar – about ¼ cup (60 ml)
  • Warm water
  • A bucket
  • A pair of rubber gloves

Steps to follow

  1. Use your measuring cup to get the exact amount of ingredients before mixing.
  2. Now, make snow foam fluid by pouring in dishwashing soap and baking soda (proportion specified above).
  3. Then pour in half the bucket of warm water. By then, you’ll notice the solution starts foaming up.
  4. Next, wear your rubber glove and thoroughly stir the ingredients to result in an effective foaming agent for car wash.

How to Make Colored Snow Foam Car Wash


What can I use instead of snow foam? If you want, you may even make colored snow foam, which will also be demonstrated below.

What to Prepare

  • A measuring cup
  • A tablespoon
  • Dishwashing soap – 1 cup (240 ml)
  • Water – ½ cup (100 ml)
  • Glycerin – 1 tablespoon
  • Food coloring – ½ – 1 tablespoon (enough to achieve your desired color)
  • A bowl

Steps to follow:

  1. Following the exact amount of each ingredient for efficacy, pour in the dishwashing soap, water, and glycerin. You should use a tablespoon and a measuring cup for this step.
  2. Stir them thoroughly until they’re completely combined.
  3. Pour in as much food coloring as needed to achieve the desired color. We recommend you start with ½ tablespoon to see the color change.

Some Tips Before Cleaning

1. Avoid Hot Temperatures


You must avoid hot temperatures to prevent your cleaning products from drying out and causing water spots. Choose a cooler time for car washing, such as early morning or late afternoon.

Also, please don’t wash your car immediately after driving it, as it may still be hot afterward. Let’s wait at least 30 minutes – 1 hour for everything to cool down.

2. Use the Appropriate Orifice Size


Located in the foam cannon’s casing, the orifice regulates the flow of liquids from the nozzle.

It’s ideal to go with a smaller orifice size to achieve thicker foam. Still, a size too small can restrict the flow and possibly damage the pressure washer. On the other hand, choosing one that’s too large may result in runny foam.

There are three sizes to choose from, including 1.1, 1.25, and 1.35 mm. Make sure you read the manual of the foam cannon to know which one to use.

3. Use the Right Dilution Ratio


The snow foam must be diluted properly according to the product’s recommendations for best results.

You should use a measuring cup and tablespoon or any measuring tool you have to get the right proportion.

4. Use the Correct Foam Cannon Settings

For the dial at the top, it’s best to set it on maximum to make the foam thicker and to achieve appropriate dilution for the solution.

But if the foam coming out is very thick with many air bubbles, then it is advisable to turn it down slightly.

For the adjustable nozzle for the spray pattern, it would be advisable to put it in the fan setting instead of the jet setting.

Using the fan setting will allow you to cover the car with foam more evenly and easily, as it has a wider coverage as compared to the jet setting.

5. Evenly Apply a Generous Amount of Foam


For the snow foam to work effectively, you must cover your entire car with an even, generous amount of thick foam. To do this properly and quickly, you’d have to spray the foam from a distance of three meters.

Frequently Asked Questions


Why Should You Create a Snow Foam Car Wash?

Although a commercial snow foam may be costly, maintaining a scratch-free clean shine for your car is important.

So to resolve this dilemma, you can make car wash foam with inexpensive ingredients that you may already have at home, such as dishwashing soap and baking soda.

What Is the Ratio for Snow Foam?

When it comes to making snow with a pressure washer and foam cannon or garden hose and foam gun, it’s essential to use the right snow foam dilution ratio. It ensures the foam is thick enough to adhere to your car and work effectively.

Using the wrong dilution ratio will make the foam too runny or thick. Either way, it wouldn’t work effectively. Generally, as most professionals advise, a snow foam-to-water ratio of 1:10 up to 1:20 usually does the trick.

But sometimes, it may also depend on some factors. They’re listed and explained below:

1. Product’s Dilution Ratio Recommendation

Here’re some methods you should be aware of:

  • Dilution radio


Products differ in formulation, so the recommended dilution ratio may vary.

For Turtlewax, for example, the standard ratio of snow foam and water is 1:16, while for dirtier vehicles, a ratio of 2:16 or 3:16 is ideal.

For Pro-Kleen’s Snow Foam, on the other hand, the recommended ratio is 1:3.

  • Panel Impact Ratio (PIR)

Some products may have other dilution methods, such as Bilt Hamber Auto Foam, which uses the panel impact ratio (PIR).

This dilution method is based on the product’s concentration as it’s sprayed on the car.

Check the PIR, which is given in percentage, usually 1- to 4%, it indicates how much percent of the overall capacity of the reservoir can be for the product for optimum panel impact ratio.

Pour water to fill the cannon and dispense with measuring the amount of water. Time the recommended PIR (1 – 4%) with the amount of water. The result will show how much snow cannon foam is required for your washing.

  • Autobrite Magifoam

Another is the Autobrite Magifoam, which recommends adding 1 – 2 inches of snow foam. In this case, getting it accurately may be tricky because not all reservoirs are the same. But it’s safe to estimate one inch of snow foam at roughly 75 ml.

2. Equipment Used

How powerful the equipment you’re using may also affect the performance of your snow foam. Not all pre-washing equipment, such as the pressure washer, foam cannon, hose, and foam gun is the same.

Differences in their design and capabilities can produce different results, so sometimes it may be necessary to adjust the dilution to a ratio that works best for your equipment.

Why Is My Snow Foam Watery?

Watery foam may result from a couple of causes. They’re listed and explained below:

1. Inaccurate Measurements

It’s important to always follow the recommended dilution ratio for your snow foam. If not, you won’t achieve the ideal thickness as you spray on car wash foam.

But suppose you did follow the measurements and still got watery foam. In that case, you may have only estimated the amount of the product and water you used, which may have needed to be more accurate. To ensure accuracy, you can use a measuring cup for diluting.

2. Issues in Your Equipment

Sometimes, the issue may be with your equipment. To fix this, you can adjust your equipment’s settings and the dilution ratio to suit your equipment to make snow foam thicker.

Sometimes, it may be due to a leak in your equipment. Or it may be because you’re using the wrong orifice size. Just check your equipment and solve the problem accordingly.

How to Make a Homemade Foam Cannon


What to Prepare

  • Pump spray bottle
  • Pliers
  • Scouring pad
  • Scissors
  • Thick needle
  • Water

Steps to follow:

  1. To create your DIY foam sprayer pull out the spray nozzle from the pump spray bottle with a pair of pliers.
  2. Cut out a small strip from the scouring pad. Then, roll up the strip of scouring pad that you cut out.
  3. Insert the entire rolled-up scouring pad into the spray nozzle. If there is any excess scouring pad protruding out of the spray nozzle, cut it off.
  4. Then, you should carefully put the nozzle back in place.
  5. Unscrew the cap out of the pump spray bottle.
  6. On the tube where the water passes, make several holes that are 0.5 cm apart at the top part with the thick needle.
  7. Pour in your snow foam, screw the cap back in, and you can finally wash car with foam cannon that you created yourself.

Snow Foam vs Car Shampoo

Snow foam is designed to provide a foamy consistency for prewashing to soften and lift the contaminants before cleaning the car with car shampoo and a wash mitt. It helps make removing contaminants easier while preventing scratches.

Car shampoo is designed to provide lubrication for hand washing the car after the pre-washing stage. It helps get rid of contaminants without having to exert too much pressure that could cause scratches.


Now that you know how to make snow foam car wash, you’ll be able to save money on your car cleaning products. Just make sure to use the accurate amounts of the ingredients. Measure them carefully so that your homemade solution will foam up and clean your car effectively.

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