15 Secrets Only Car Detailers Know

15 Secrets Only Car Detailers Know

If you plan to sell your car or want to get the most utility from it, get a comprehensive car detailing service at least twice or thrice per year. This invaluable service can increase the car’s resale value by 10 -20%.

With the many businesses offering car detailing services, finding the right service provider is usually an uphill task for most car owners. Here is a list of the primary factors you should consider when vetting car detailers.

  • Legal Accreditation and Licensing: Confirm that the business is legally accredited and licensed to operate in your location.
  • Reputation: Avoid car detailers with a poor track record. That’s a red flag that they don’t offer quality services.
  • Cost: Compare the prices to find a car detailer whose services are affordable.
  • List of Services Offered: Check the service packages to get value for money.
  • Availability: Check whether they offer the services past regular working hours, during weekends, and holidays.
  • Flexibility: Confirm whether the car detailer can come to your location or you have to drive to their premises.

The rule of thumb is to consult widely to get the best car detailing service. Let’s shift gears and reveal 15 secrets only car detailers know. This information will help you understand what car detailing entails and cushion you from being fleeced of your hard-earned money.

Shampoo the Car Every Two Weeks

Shampooing your car every two weeks will revamp the vehicle’s condition and increase its longevity. The shampoo will eliminate grime on the autobody, thus preventing the paint and parts from deteriorating. It will also improve the car quality by brushing off the dust and other debris on the carpets, seats, and confined spaces.

Use a Towel to Dry the Paint

You can use a towel to dry the wet paint, but not the regular towel, as it can leave lint and create scratches on the surface. Use a microfiber towel to achieve a smooth finish.

Don’t Remove Marks with Wax. Use Polish

Polishing removes dirt, scrapes, grease, and scratch marks more effectively. A regular wash won’t get rid of the marks. The polish is applied with other cleaning reagents to eliminate swirl marks, rusting spots, minor scratches, and dirt.

Rinse your Sponge Before Cleaning

Rinsing the sponge you intend to use to clean the car interiors will help eliminate bacteria and allergens trapped in the deep layers. Vinegar is the best reagent for this task as kills 99.9% of bacteria and viruses.

Check the Surface with a Plastic Bag

It’s challenging to pinpoint scratches and imperfections such as bumps on the car’s surface with the naked eye. Put your hand inside a plastic bag and gently run over the car’s exterior. The enhanced sense of touch will help you identify the scratches with ease. Detail the identified areas and check again to ensure the identified regions are smooth before applying polish and protective wax.

Use Static Electricity on Carpets

Vacuuming is effective in getting rid of miniature dust particles and hair strands from the carpet. Confirm that there are no remnants of the same by using static electricity. 

How do I generate static electricity? Put on latex gloves and rub your hand over the carpet. The static electricity produced by the latex material will exhume pet hair lodged in the deep layers to the surface, making it easier for you to remove through vacuuming or by hand.

Use a Can of Compressed Air to Deodorize your Vents

Accumulation of dust in the air ducts and vents will ruin indoor car quality. Deodorize and clean the vents by spraying a can of compressed air, also referred to as an electronic duster. Finish the process by spraying a car cleaning solution and wiping off dust remnants from the vent slats using a clean microfiber cloth.

Brush the Carpet First

Brushing the car carpets before vacuuming will free up the dust particles, thus making it easier to suction them out. Use a gentle brush to avoid ruining the carpet material fibers. If the carpets are too dirty and require more attention, consider using a fabric cleaner to dislodge the dust particles.

Treat Trim with Restoring Product Before Applying Wax

Restoration products are specially formulated to protect the trim from abrasion, chemicals, and grime. Treat the trim before applying wax to avoid the formation of stains.

Dress your Tires Last

Tire dressing prevents fading, cracking, and hardening of the rubber material. This car detailing process revitalizes the rubber without making it too shiny. Go for the water-based tire dressings as they are biodegradable, thus planet friendly.

Wash the Car When It Is Out of Sunlight

Exposure to direct sunlight will dry the cleaning products/reagents before you can wipe them off. If you must wash your car when the sun is out, ensure that you do it panel by panel. Also, washing the car when it’s not exposed to the sun helps to conserve water.

Invest in Multipurpose Polisher

A multipurpose polisher will help you get more work done without spending money on different polishes. For example, it will eliminate swirl marks, oxidation marks, and scratches, leaving the paint clean, shiny, and smooth.

Invest in Good Cleaning Products

The market is filled with hundreds, if not thousands, of different car cleaning products. Do due diligence to buy products that are top quality and trusted by many car detailers. Remember, cheap is expensive; low-priced products will do more harm than good.

Use Microfiber Cloths for Cleaning

Cotton detailing towels won’t get the job done right. Instead, use microfiber cloths and towels. They are superbly absorbent and can suck up tiny fibers from the vehicle’s surface without creating marks and scratches.

Wax with a Power Buffer

Wax is best applied on the car’s surface using a power buffer. Avoid ruining the clear coat or burning the paint when using this tool.

Car Detailing FAQs

Car detailing will make your vehicle look brand new and crank up its resale value. Here are the three most common questions about car detailing.

  1. When detailing a car, what do you do first?

The wheels are usually the grubbiest parts of the car so start with them. Please give them a nice pre-soak using a quality wheel cleaner. Use a brush to dislodge mud and dirt from the confined spaces.

  1. Is car detailing the same as car cleaning?

Most car owners interchangeably use the terms car cleaning and car detailing even though they have different meanings. The main difference is that auto detailing is more in-depth and thorough than regular car washing.

  1. What chemicals and tools do car detailers use?

The chemicals used depend on the condition of the car. The essential auto detailing tools and chemicals they use are clay bars, degreasers, waxes, car wash soap, paint cleaners, polishes, and glazes.


There you have it; those are the top 15 secrets only car detailers know. Make sure you seek the service from a reputable car detailer to avoid regrets down the road and get value for money. Be bold enough to seek clarification about processes to be done on the car. Good luck!