If you have ever taken your vehicle for a professional valet and detail service, you will know the wonderfully high-quality result they can achieve. It almost seems like every bit of the inside and outside of your vehicle is spotless and shiny, and it makes it a real joy to drive. Of course, getting a similar result at home has been all but impossible. Until now, because below we have some expert detailing secrets straight from the professional mouths.
What is detailing?
Detailing is all about going above and beyond and achieving a finish on your car that makes it feels the same as when you drove it from the forecourt the very first time. It’s beyond valeting which is about washing and cleaning the inside. However, it is important to note that to get a perfect detail you will have to do these jobs first, something that is described in the next section below.
To valet your car, you will need to wash the outside and give the inside a basic vacuum. Of course, you have a choice as to whether to do this work yourself or go to a garage and have a roller wash complete the outside cleaning task.
Before you make this decision though it is worth mentioning that not all roller washes are created equal, and they are pretty ecologically unfriendly too, with around 11 gallons of water being used in every wash. In fact, some roller washes have even been known to damage the paintwork on a car. Not something you will be too pleased to hear if you are looking for a perfect finish.
With that in mind, it is often a much better choice to soap up your vehicle at home. Just remember to use some dish soap to remove any old layers for wax from the last time you detail your car. Otherwise, you won’t get that full deep clean you need to as a perfect base for your next detailing.
Vacuuming your car is an essential prestage for detailing.
After that, give the vehicle a thorough vacuuming and be sure to collect up as much dust and dirt as you can. After all, whatever you leave will need to be dealt with in the next stage, so you are only making more work for yourself if you scrimp on this task.
Detailing the inside
Once you have completed your basic valet, it’s time to get right into the minutiae of detailing. Remember an eye for detail and a high motivation to achieve an excellent result are essential for success here.
To detail the inside of your vehicle, it is often necessary to clean the seats. Firstly, if you have any spot stains, you can try and remove them with toothpaste. Its granular texture can help scrub out the stain without damaging the fabric.
Next, it’s a great idea to wash the entire seat. You can do by using a tool like this AutoDeets upholstery steamer. A device that will make the task much more effective as well as easier for you.
Then, if you are still left with a stain, it might be time to get a little creative. To do this involves cutting out a stained area and replacing it with a clean piece of fabric from somewhere else in the cab that is not visible. Sort of like skin graft but for cars!
Once your upholstery is clean, you can then move on to treating any leather parts, something you can find out more about the video below. Then all that’s left is to remove any additional dust and dirt from cracks and crevices in the interior by using compressed air and small brushes.
Detailing the outside
After you have finished working on the inside of your car, it is time to make that the outside looks just as good. Of course, you are starting with a clean base, so this stage of the process is more about paying attention to the finer details.
In particular, you can use clay to remove dirt from windows and headlights, and applying a coat of wax over the paintwork and then buffing it off will not only give you the perfect shine but will protect your car while you are deriving it as well.
Last of all, don’t forget to deal with the wheels, by applying tire dressing, so they look as clean and even in color as possible too. Then you will have a vehicle that is detailed to a professional level, even though you have done the work yourself.