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Car detailing is the act of deep cleaning your vehicle and restoring it as closely to a mint condition as possible.
If you think of washing your car like taking a shower, then car detailing would be like going to a day spa and getting the full treatment. Using soap and water to clean the outside is a good practice, but you would need to really put in some extra work to get the hidden dirt and grime that might be building up.
Having your car detailed by professionals can get pretty expensive. However, you can save quite a bit of money by performing the act at home. In order to properly restore your vehicle to its former condition, you’ll need to follow a careful routine.
These are a few of the areas you’ll need to focus on and a few helpful tips on getting them thoroughly cleaned.
In order to properly detail your car, you will need the following items:
This list might seem a little bit intimidating at first, but you probably have a lot of these items already.
If not, you’ll be able to reuse them for a long time and get your money’s worth. That’s especially true if you buy the cleaning and polishing products in bulk.
The exterior of your vehicle will be subjected to very harsh conditions and will experience severe punishments from all kinds of different elements.
Depending on where you live, your car will constantly experience direct sunlight, intense high or low temperatures, and other elements of nature such as rain, sand, dirt, mud, and snow. The exterior of your vehicle can also be negatively impacted by unexpected sources too. Bugs, bird droppings, tree sap, and even dust can damage your paint too.
The best thing you can do to limit the damage of these elements is to park in a covered area as often as possible and try to detail the exterior of your car once a week.
These are the areas that you will need to pay attention to when detailing your exterior:
As the name implies, detailing your car will require paying special attention to the details. The overall process isn’t particularly complicated, but it’s important to focus on hitting all the spots whether you can see any grime or not.
It’s important to take your time and complete the following steps in this order:
Before you get started, make sure to park your vehicle in the shade in order to avoid direct sunlight and heat. It’s best to wash your car either before 10 am in the morning or after 4 pm in the afternoon.
Once you’ve dried your vehicle, it’s now time to apply wax to the painted areas. Use a quick coat product to help to clean, seal, and protect the ceramics that make up your vehicle’s paint and finish and save time compared to using traditional wax.
Using soap when washing your car in the first part of this process is probably enough to improve visibility and cleanliness. However, for a true detailing, you’ll want to go back over them afterward. Make sure to clean the inside of your glass windows, not just the outside.
Your tires can become incredibly dirty in a very short amount of time. Even after washing your car, this part can still be pretty filthy, which is why it’s such an important part of detailing.
The difficulty of cleaning the interior of your car will largely depend on how clean you keep it in between details. By maintaining a high level of cleanliness, you can make this part much easier on yourself in the future.
There are a few different areas of focus when detailing the interior of your car, including:
There are way more customizable options for the interior of your vehicle compared to the exterior. As a result, the process of detailing the inside isn’t as universal. However, there are still a few things that will be common to detailing all vehicles.
First, you should remove all the large items and trash from your vehicle. Anything bigger than a penny should be out of your car before you get started.
After vacuuming and removing debris, you will then need to clean the upholstery.
Once you have taken care of the fabrics inside your vehicle, you’ll need to turn your attention to the dashboards and hard plastics. These various plastics are particularly susceptible to sun damage, so it’s a good idea to use an interior detailing spray to help protect them.
Detailing your car can be a little bit tricky the first few times that you do it. Just like the name suggests, you’ll need to pay attention to the details. However, you’ll start to develop a mental checklist and routine after doing it a few times, and it will only get easier each time.
Keeping some of the tips listed above in mind and using the proper products can help your car look as good as it did the day you bought it.