Basic Car Detailing Tips

If you own a newer car, then chances are that you want to keep it looking nice. Most people will take the time to wash their car on a fairly regular basis, but doing a full detail job can preserve your car’s finish and really make it look great. Furthermore, if you live in an area that gets cold during the winter where they use salt on the roads to keep them free from ice buildup, giving your car a proper detailing can reduce the risk of rust that can destroy your car prematurely. When giving your car a basic detailing, there are three major areas that you need to pay attention to; the interior, exterior, and wheels.

Interior Detailing

To properly detail the interior of your car, the first thing you’ll want to do is give a quick wipe down to all the surfaces. I like to start by wiping down the dashboard and door panels, then move on to cleaning the windows. Next, I like to put some type of UV protectant on all of the vinyl surfaces to prevent them from cracking and ensure they are still sparkling bright a few years down the road. I also like to put a leather protectant on my seats so they stay supple and flexible, and then finish the interior detailing with a very thorough vacuuming to pick up any debris that was sent to the carpet from cleaning the rest of the interior.

Exterior Detailing

Most people use a soapy bucket of water and a sponge to clean the exterior of their car and then spray it off with their garden hose. This is a great way to get things started, but you’re not doing much to protect the finish of your car. Every good exterior car detailing will finish off with a high quality waxing to take the job to the next level. Not only will this make your car’s exterior look like a million bucks, but it will also protect your paint from the harmful effects of UV rays and other nasty elements such as salt and road debris. I also like to give my paint job a nice soft buffing once in a while to remove the previous layers of wax to give the new coat a nice clean base for maximum adhesion.

Wheels and Tires

Most people overlook the wheels and tires during their car detailing, but in my opinion it is what sets apart a good detailing from a great one. I like to give them a thorough wash using the soap and water from the exterior car detailing, but then I follow it up with a cleaner that is designed specifically for tires. By using a cleaner that has a protectant specifically for the type of rubber used in your tires, you can make them look fabulous and increase their lifespan. Dry rubber is more susceptible to cracking which can lead to a blowout, so by taking the time to treat your tires properly you can actually save money in the long run and avoid a trip to the tire store.