Auto detailing involves the close inspection and cleaning of your vehicle both inside and out. It can give the new car feel back to your older car and is also a good way to correct minor blemishes and prepare a vehicle for resale. You need to know what to expect before they start the job.
Exterior detailing basically implies a thorough cleaning and bringing the car’s finish to a bright shine, the end results will vary depending on the quality and condition of your vehicles paint.
A detailer will also clean and shine your car’s windows, wheels, tires and trim. There are many different products that a detailer may use to accomplish this, including detailing clay, detergents, polishes, waxes and various cloths or applicators.
There are three main elements of exterior detailing. These three are cleaning, polishing, and waxing.
The first step is to thoroughly clean the entire exterior, which will remove all the foreign contaminants that if left unchecked can start to compromise the painted surface.
Depending on the detailing package you were to purchase, a clay bar may be used to further remove any additional impurities that basic cleaning will not remove. The clay bar should be used on the entire painted surface. This will remove any factory overspray, dirt particles, tar or industrial fallout.
A detailer may use various polishing pads to remove fine scratches and swirls produced from improper cleaning or drying. However a good quality wax which is properly applied will eliminate most of these and help to protect the paint in the future.
Automotive waxes provide an excellent barrier against the elements so it’s imperative to ensure that a good wax is used.
Interior detailing involves the thorough cleaning of the interior of the vehicle. A detail package should always include vacuuming, removal of trash and debris. It may also include steam cleaning the carpets and upholstery, and thorough cleaning of the dash and console with fine brushes or Q-tips.
Not all detailing companies offer this service. If you decide to have your engine compartment detailed, you should make sure that any product used does not contain petroleum products. Petroleum based products can break down and cause failure of rubber parts, such as hoses and fan belts.
Knowing the basics of auto detailing will help you to feel comfortable with the service that an auto detailer provides.