A guide to detailing and cleaning your car like a pro
If you think that your car doesn’t really need a lot of care and attention, you are quite wrong. Every painted surface needs to be properly cleaned and given a healthy glow. That is the only way to get your car in a presentable state and enjoy every drive with it.
While it is true that detailing your car as part of a DIY project is now easier than ever, there are still many fine details you shouldn’t ignore. If you ever feel uncertain, it is best to consult some experts or contact a mobile car valeting company. If you are feeling adventurous, you can follow some steps to deal with the task on your own:
Evaluate exterior and interior needs – a car needs care and attention both on the inside and the outside. Don’t forget that dash, rugs/carpets and headliners all have to be looked at, much like the hood, wheels and tyres. A car cleaning process should not be rushed because you have no coins for the local automated car wash or you lack time. It is best to address the vehicle in its entirety so that you feel okay about it when you are driving it around.
Use the air compressor – vacuum cleaning your car’s exterior is important, but you should know of this effective alternative – using the air compressor to blow out dirt and other solid particles stuck there. The rugs under the feet are usually the only line of defence against all the grime and debris stuck on your feet, so you will do well to blow the carpets with air, in addition to vacuuming, to ensure thorough cleaning. You can even use the air from a small compressor to address hard-to-reach places like air-conditioning ductworks. As a bonus, this will eliminate any musty smells.
Rely on non-acid tyre cleaners – when too much brake dust and residue is present on your tyres, you will find that people recommend using acid solutions. However, if you are doing the work on your own, you are better off using a non-acid product. The reason for this is that acid-based cleaners can in fact cause wheel alloys to pit and oxidise. The last thing you want to see is damaged wheels. Remember: it is always best to address tyres and wheels before doing any other cleaning tasks.
Hand washing is the best car wash – not only is hand washing way more thorough and effective than jet washing, but it also gives you the opportunity to inspect the car surface and see if there are any damages. However, it is best to go with a car wash solution that preserves the paint’s finish, and not clean with a simple dish detergent mixed with water. Always dry the car after washing to eliminate the risk of water leaving dirt and minerals on the car’s surface.
Use wax to protect paint – every new vehicle has a coat of paint, which looks great. However, that protective layer wears off over time, leaving the paint unprotected. Wax is an excellent choice for adding an extra line of defence against stains and scratches. There are currently liquid and paste waxes, and both work well. Professionals recommend using two coats in order to ensure there are no tiny areas left without protection.
Wax every season – in the period of waxing and cleaning, your car’s paint will pick up some stains and scratches. While it is true you can fix the issue with spray wax, it should not come as a substitute for waxing because a real coating is the only effective way of protecting your car’s paint.
By following these cleaning and detailing tips, you can ensure that your car looks great. Invest some time in them and you will immediately see the difference.