Everyone has a different idea of what a car detail is.
A few people think its a simple wash and vacuum, some think its an interior shampoo and wax.
Most clients don’t know the intricate details that we at Drip Detailing watch out for in our detailing packages.
This guide was developed to help everyone detail their cars, our entire detailing process is outlined in this article.
Its completely in your hands what you want to take away from this article, do you want to detail like a pro or just understand what your paying for?
We are sure that regardless of whether you are a car enthusiast or simply just wanna keep your vehicle clean that this article is the end all of how to detail a car.
What Condition Is Your Car In
How do I evaluate my cars condition?
This can be a challenging question when you know nothing about detailing,
before you get scared away, its ok to not know how to evaluate the condition of your vehicle.
In the beginning everything seems tough,
everyone has their own unique methods but we believe in starting with the paint.
Paint generally takes the biggest beating on any part of your car and can be the most pricey to fix and repair, paint repair can range from anywhere between $300 – $2500.
These numbers are no joke, that is why we always recommend a coating of ceramic pro to all our customer vehicles.
This mess in the picture below costed $300 to repair but with a simple coating of ceramic pro it would-be just $30!
Start evaluating your Cars paint evaluation by taking a walk around and look out for any tar, water spots and big stains.
When you run your hand across the paint (its ok to avoid the bugs) does it feel course and rugged or is it nice and smooth?
Depending on your current evaluation will decide how much time is needed to maintain or repair your cars paint.
If your paint is smooth to the touch and is gentle to the touch you can get away with simply washing your vehicle once per week thoroughly.
However if your paint is damaged you can expect to spend up to to three to five hours depending on the results you want.
A key item we strongly believe in using when restoring your cars paint back to ideal conditions is a clay bar,
many detailers will use a clay bar before waxing in order to remove contaminants from your paint.
Contrary to popular belief a simple wax will not remove contaminants.
Yes, that means even though a wax makes your paint feel silky and look great it really isn’t decontaminated.
I have finished inspecting and cleaning the paint of my car
Now that you’ve finished looking over and correcting your cars paint, we are gonna need you to look over it once again,
This time we are looking to inspect the paint for swirl marks, scratches or any other forms of paint damage.
Many car owners get terrified when they actually take a deep look at the damage on their paint.
But remember not to get scared, Drip detailing has your back!
Most damage done to paint can be reversed by using some quality products with a orbital polishing machine to speed up the process
We recommend using a clay bar, 3M compound and a rupes Bigfoot polisher.
The average process for small scratches takes roughly 5 minutes per scratch with big areas of damage taking 15 minutes.
The time can vary significantly depending on varying conditions,
you want to take your time here because its only gonna pay it forward for the waxing process.
Our general rule of thumb at Drip Detailing is to do a inspection and deep treatment on your vehicles paint 2 times yearly and apply wax once per season.
If you listen to the steps laid out in this guide we can guarantee that your cars paint will remain pristine for many years to come.
We do understand this can get pricey that is why we are firm believers in the benefits and savings that ceramic pro provides
How are your rims and tyres?
When it comes to rims and tyres many people spend a pretty penny ensuring their vehicle is fitted with the premium choices,
Ironically the wheels and tyres are the most neglected, even more than the coat of paint itself.
Neglecting the rims can lead to your investment becoming stained with tar, brake dust and other contaminants,
your tyres can also begin to turn brown and look aged (Don’t believe us take a look for yourself!)
Regular washes and treating your tyres with the right chemicals and wax will help you avoid this issue.
Dont soil your investments on a good pair of rims, spend an hour showing your tyres some love with a sponge and your products,
We guarantee this simple step will ensure the longevity and hold the value of your investment.
These following products are recommended
EW Whats That Stain On My Seat!
Have you ever taken a close look at the inside of your vehicle?
It can be disturbing to try to figure out what that stain is and why its that colour,
You can swear that you never did that but the interior doesn’t lie,
Don’t be too hard on yourself though because the average time someone spends in there car is 17,600 minutes or 294 hours according to AAA
With this much time spent in your car its unavoidable to have mishaps.
Our expert team at Drip Detailing is known to remove stains and have your interior looking back to new as soon as possible,
How do we do it, its simple.
We begin by evaluating the car, a vehicle that is used to haul around a team of athletes will have different needs than a gravel truck.
Begin by evaluating the upholstery, vinyl, stains on the seat, will it need pet hair removal, is the leather cracked and is there any vomit in the car (Yes, this happens often), does the car have a smell?
These are some of the great key points but we are not limited to these areas alone, be sure to keep an eye out for hidden areas such as under the seat or cup holders,
After this analyzation it won’t come as any surprise that an interior detail is way more intensive and requires much more care than an exterior detail,
We strongly recommend doing small interior details every time you take your car to a carwash.
Allocating ten to fifteen minutes to vacuuming and five to ten minutes to vinyl can be sufficient if you keep up with a steady schedule
This can help you avoid a larger mess in your vehicle which can take upwards of one to five hours including seat shampooing, pet hair removal and other variable factors.
Lets be honest though, we all have enough chores and detailing your car can become a tough one, especially in those cold Calgary winters.
Allocating a budget to have your car detailed 2 times, once before winter and once after winter is usually sufficient for most individuals to keep their interior clean and healthy.
When you come to Drip Detailing for a Detail we vacuum the interior (even all the areas you can see :P) , disinfect and sanitize all the vinyl, shampoo all the upholstery and mats
Ha did you think that was all? We even ensure none of the small details are missed by going over areas with a toothpick (Yes, we are serious) and finishing off by adding a mist of our limited collection airfreshners
Did you know ceramic pro can also protect your interior, ask us how!
Ok now we are finally done the informational interior detail section, follow these steps if you want a flawless interior.
Enough Information, What Do I Need and How Can I Detail My Car
Do yourself a favour and buy the following,
A powerful vacuum to such up all those debris, quality disinfectant to get rid of any germs, premium vinyl cleaner for that shine and of course a drip detailing air freshener for a unbeatable scent.
If you always plan on doing your detailing by yourself looking into shampoo machine would also be recommended.
The golden rule to follow when detailing is “less is more” many amateurs tend to overdue it with the products.
Its understandable why, you assume that you can get more shine or a deeper clean so why not use more?
Typical surfaces in cars absorb their limit within the first few minutes of the dressings being applied any excess dressings should be reabsorbed with a microfibre or buffed away immediately.
This simple feature can differentiate a safe car from a unsafe car,
Check out the picture bellow to see why we believe in having clear restored headlights
Use this picture as a guide to whether or not you need to get your headlights restored,
Don’t place yourself or others at risk by neglecting your headlights, this simple fix can not only make your car look significantly better and strongly improve the safety of your vehicle
The process to do this correctly and help it maintain its clearness is intesive, we use a mix of several chemicals and Ceramic pro.
We strongly do not recommend doing this at home as it is easy to damage your headlights or buy a cheap kit that will wear within one year.
What separates the amateurs from the pros
Alright time to wrap up, many people ask what the secret to detailing a car is and I’m about to share it with you!
I have often shared this secret with many people but no one implements it because it requires that extra push.
The secret is that what separates a pro detailer from an amateur is the details,
At Drip Detailing we want to ensure you are getting good value from your detailer so use these guidelines in order to hold yourself accountable or your detailer accountable.
BONUS DETAILING TIPS
Vacuuming Doesn’t Remove All The Pet Hair
Removing pet hair from a vehicle can be one of the more challenging tasks when it comes to detailing,
Once it sticks to your vehicle it seems as if it never comes off unless its on your clothes.
Luckily we have a foolproof method to help our clients remove pet hair with ease, its as simple as investing in a quality lint roller.
Keep the lint roller in your vehicle and use it on any pet hair that is attached to your upholstery or yourself!
Why Are My Windows Fogging Up
Have you ever been driving and start realizing its getting harder and harder to see no matter how much you crank the defroster?
This issue is usually fog that is inside of your vehicle, this fog is created from your vehicles interior plastics,
Generally when vehicles begin to age the fog will become less of an issue. But if your looking to minimize this issue we have you covered,
You can minimize the amount of fog by using the appropriate interior detailing chemicals, be sure to just them in the appropriate amount and to wipe the interior dry.
WHY YOU SHOULDN’T DRIVE WITH YOUR ROOF DOWN
Sometimes the best advice for you isn’t something you want to hear
That is often the case when we tell our clients that driving with your top down is actually harmful to your vehicle.
Typically you drive with your top down in warm weather.
The issue with this is that sweat, sunscreen and UV rays can damage the upholstery of your vehicle.
Placing seat covers on your seats or driving well dressed can help reduce the effects of the harmful rays or chemicals
Ultimately we believe in enjoying our vehicles but it is good to keep in mind this can cause deterioration to the interior.
Yes, More Car Washing Tips
We have seen many people wash their own cars and what comes easy for us isn’t always so for others
That is why we are going to point out some easy tips that will have you washing like a pro.
Washing from top to bottom is the first tip,
It can be tempting to wash from the bottom up because the bottom is the most dirty.
Avoid this and wash from top down because then you are essentially pushing all the dirt and grime downwards instead of back onto your car.
Another excellent tip is to not wash your car after an intense drive,
It should come as a no brainer that hot parts are not to be mixed with cool water.
Doing this can cause damage to hot parts such as your vehicles brakes, engine and much more valuable parts.
Be smart and let your car cool down.
WOW you’ve completed the ultimate detailing guide
Not many people have the determination and love for their vehicles to finish reading an intensive detailing guide like this.
Simply reading an applying the knowledge you learned will put you far ahead 95% of gear heads,
but you didn’t come this far to just stop here!
To ensure your vehicle stays clean we recommended reading ceramic pro and the benefits it can bring to your car!