If you want to make your car look brand new, you need to know a few auto detailing tips. A good detailer can help you restore your vehicle’s value, as well as keep it looking and running its best.
Clay bar is one tool that can get rid of water spots, metal dust, road grit and more from the clear coat of your car. It will also prevent swirl marks and keep your paint job shiny and smooth.
1. Clean the Exterior
Auto detailing involves a thorough clean of the vehicle’s exterior that is much more extensive than simply washing and rinsing. This process is also called decontamination and it ensures that all surfaces are smooth and free from bound “contaminants” such as tar, iron fallout and tree sap. Decontamination can be done chemically using sprays or physically with a clay bar. Both methods are necessary to create a perfect canvas for protective waxes and sealants.
When it comes to cleaning the exterior of your car, it is important that you know what you are doing in order to avoid damaging your vehicle’s finish. The key is to always start with a high-quality soap that is specially formulated for cars. These products will not ruin your paint job and will help you achieve a beautiful shine. In addition, it is best to start at the top of the car and work your way down in order to avoid getting dirt on areas that you have already cleaned.
It is also recommended that you use a high-quality microfiber cloth to clean the surface of your vehicle. These cloths are specifically designed to be super soft and will not scratch the surface of your car’s paint. Using a cheap sponge or cloth can leave behind fine scratches that will be very noticeable on the surface of your vehicle’s paint.
Once you are finished with your wash, make sure to rinse thoroughly. This is especially important if you are working in direct sunlight. If you do not rinse your car properly, it can lead to water spots that will take a long time to remove. It is also a good idea to dry your car immediately after you have washed it. This will help prevent the formation of streaks and will also allow you to apply the protectant faster.
Lastly, make sure to use a quality glass cleaner that is specifically designed for automobiles. This product will not damage the clear coat on your vehicle’s paint and will help you to achieve a sparkling, crystal-clear shine.
It is important to remember that when it comes to car detailing, it is the little things that can make a big difference. By following these simple tips, you can ensure that your car looks like it came out of the showroom.
2. Clean the Interior
We all know that our cars can become disaster zones – empty drink containers, stray makeup bags, and discarded cleats are just a few of the many items that may end up in your car’s interior. To get your vehicle back to its pristine state, follow these quick and easy auto detailing tips.
Start by vacuuming the interior of your car. This will remove any large crumbs and other debris that could be hiding underneath the seats. If your car has cloth upholstery, be sure to use a fabric protectant after cleaning. This will keep your car’s fabrics looking and smelling new for years to come.
When you’re done vacuuming, go over the inside of your car with a damp microfiber cloth. This will remove any lingering dirt and grime, and it’ll also help to buff out any streaks that might be present.
It’s a good idea to wash your windows first. This will make it much easier to clean the rest of your car’s interior because you won’t be wiping water and cleaner all over the place. Make sure to use a glass cleaner that doesn’t contain ammonia.
Once you’ve washed your windows, wipe down the dashboard and console. You can also use this opportunity to clean the steering wheel, door panels, and pedals. Be sure to rinse your rag frequently and change it out when it gets too dirty.
If you’re having trouble getting into hard-to-reach areas, try using a compressed air duster. These are available at most hardware stores and are a great way to dislodge dust that’s stuck in your middle console.
After sanitizing the interior of your car, use a dry microfiber cloth to remove any streaks from your window and mirrors. This will ensure that you have a crystal-clear view while driving.
As you’re cleaning the interior of your car, don’t forget to clean the floor mats. This is a good time to remove them and shake them outside to loosen any dirt that might be embedded underneath them. Then, run them through the washing machine to get them clean and fresh again.
3. Clean the Wheels
The wheels of your car collect dirt, grime, brake dust, and road debris much more quickly than any other part of the vehicle. That’s why it’s so important to pay attention to them when cleaning your car. The last thing you want is to accidentally damage your beautiful new rims with an overzealous approach to scrubbing.
The best way to protect your wheels and rims is by applying a non-acidic wheel cleaner at the beginning of your detailing process, before you wash the rest of the vehicle. Apply the cleaner with a high-pressure hose, then allow it to soak for a few minutes before scrubbing it off with a soft brush. Don’t forget to scrub the crevices of the rims and spokes as well!
When scrubbing your wheels and rims, it’s also vital to use the right tools. Using household abrasives such as steel wool or dish scrubbers will quickly scratch and mar the finish of your wheels. Similarly, sponges are notorious for leaving swirl marks on the surface of your paint when used incorrectly. Invest in some microfiber cloths or towels that are designed to clean and dry your car without leaving any scratches or swirl marks.
Whenever possible, work indoors or in the shade. Hot surfaces and direct sunlight accelerate the drying of soap and water, leading to stubborn water spots and streaks on the surface of your car’s paint.
Another mistake that many people make when washing their cars is not properly rinsing the wheels and tire wells. This can lead to contaminants (especially degreasers and brake cleaner) splattering onto the freshly-washed panels of your vehicle’s body. This can permanently etch or damage those areas of your vehicle’s finish.
If you aren’t going to take the time to clean your tires and rims, don’t bother with the rest of your car’s exterior. At the very least, rinse the windshield, windows, and door trim with a hose and car wash soap, then towel dry them to prevent water spots from forming. Taking these simple steps will help to keep your car looking great for years to come!
4. Clean the Tires
Clean the tires and wheels first before you wash the body of the vehicle. This prevents overspray from washing onto cleaned panels. Also, it ensures that you’ve thoroughly cleaned the grit and caustic brake dust off the tires before they dry.
Scrub the tires and wheels with a strong degreaser such as Wolfgang Tire & Wheel Cleaner. This product clings to the surface of both the tire and wheel to loosen dirt that’s embedded in the pores of the rubber and to release trapped brake dust. Using a stiff brush, agitate the cleaner to help break up the brake dust. Rinse well with a high-pressure sprayer, being sure to rinse away the cleaning agent as well as the dirt and grime.
Be careful when you’re choosing a tire cleaner. Some products such as Armor All collect dirt and debris on the surface of the tire, which can cause discoloration and premature wear. Others, like Pinnacle Black Onyx Tire Gel, nourish the rubber to create a natural appearance and offer a protective seal.
When you’re washing the tires, always use a separate sponge and drying towel for this task. Tire and wheel cleaners can damage the paint if they come in contact with it. To protect the paint of your car, use a Microfiber All Purpose & Wheel Detailing Towel or a terry cloth towel that you only ever use for tires and wheels. Avoid old-style chamois towels that can leave water marks on the bodywork of your vehicle.
After you’ve thoroughly rinsed the tires, dry them with a Microfiber All-Purpose & Wheel Towel or terry cloth towel. This step helps prevent water spots and ensures that you’ve removed every bit of the cleaner from the surface of the tire.
Tires and wheels are the only parts of your vehicle that make contact with the road. So, they get dirty quickly and should be cleaned regularly. Doing so will prolong the life of your tires and keep them looking great.