Car Detailing 101 – Tips for Keeping Your Vehicle Looking Like New

Maintenance is key when owning any car, be it old or new. Ensuring your ride remains in peak condition will protect it against environmental factors while keeping its appearance up-to-date.

To successfully maintain your car, it’s essential that you use the appropriate products and techniques, including knowing when it is best to wash and dry your car.

1. Wash Your Car Regularly

Vehicle ownership is a significant investment and the best way to preserve its condition for as long as possible is to regularly wash and wax it – at minimum every two weeks and once every month respectively.

Use a separate bucket and scrubbing mitt for each section of your vehicle to avoid cross-contamination and prevent contaminants from spreading from one part to the next. This will ensure they won’t end up back on your freshly cleaned paintwork!

Be sure to pay special attention to areas facing the road, such as wheel wells and areas near wheel wells that collect salt – this can lead to corrosion damage as well as other issues. Begin your service with an extensive vacuuming of the interior; this will remove heavy dirt, dust, debris from seats, floor mats, carpets, dashboard and any small crevices in the vehicle.

2. Clean Your Tires

Car detailing is a multifaceted process that goes far beyond washing and waxing your vehicle’s paint surface; it also involves maintaining its tires and wheels to look their best while prolonging their performance. When you maintain these aspects properly, car detailing can add value both aesthetically and financially.

Tires accumulate more grime than any other part of an exterior and must be thoroughly cleaned regularly to maintain peak condition. They are vulnerable to damage from road salt, brake dust and other contaminants that erode rubber, leading to pitting and grooves on its surface. Accumulated dirt may also contribute to this degradation by pitting.

Start by spraying water over your tires to loosen any large debris, then mix a solution of soap and water for use on them with a bristled brush to scrub their surface with. Rinse thoroughly afterward and dry with a cloth. When cleaning wheels/tires with this method, be sure to designate specific rags just for them; this will prevent their dirtiness from staining other parts of your vehicle.

3. Clean Your Interior

Your vehicle takes a beating. Between long commutes, family road trips and daily errands, its interior can become an eyesore quickly.

Throw out any trash and use a vacuum or brush to extract dust, dirt and other debris from the cabin. Additionally, products can help shine surfaces like the dashboard or console, and leather seats may require special care products to keep them looking brand new.

Steering wheels and gear shifts are breeding grounds for germs, so use a disinfecting wipe to quickly cleanse these high-touch areas. Don’t forget your glass and chrome surfaces — they can collect smudges or streaks as well. Whenever working on the interior of your car it is wise to work from top down following your detailer’s pattern so as to not miss any spots or create water marks; additionally it would be wise to do it in a cool garage or shaded area as many detailing products don’t work as effectively on hot surfaces.

4. Clean Your Exterior

Car detailing is one of the best ways to maintain its value over time. Whether it is done yourself or professionally, regular detailing will prevent its paint and clear coat from becoming compromised by environmental elements and prolong its longevity.

Your vehicle’s exterior is constantly exposed to pollution like road grit, tar, and insects that can damage its paint and scratch or pit it. An acid free cleaner such as shampoo will help safeguard its investment.

When washing your vehicle, it is essential that you start from the top and work down in order to avoid spreading dirt that you have just worked so hard to remove. Also use different microfiber cloths for interior and exterior detailing so as not to transfer bacteria between areas of the car. A detail spray such as Sonax Brilliant Shine Detailer or BLACKFIRE Midnight Sun Instant Detail Spray will make sure your vehicle looks brand new when complete!

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