Car Detailing – The Complete Ins And Outs

Cars are an undeniably significant part of our lives. Be it commute or social status; an impressive car is the key to get places. However, taking care of your car can be challenging, especially when you are unaware of the available services and their entailments. Car detailing is one of the easiest and most accessible ways to keep your car looking brand new.

What is car detailing?

In simple words, car detailing is the thorough cleaning of the inside and outside of a car. However, it is far more complicated than a simple car wash and requires quite a lot of tools. Consequently, the results are also superior to that of a mere car wash. Many professionals offer car detailing services through various packages.

The need for car detailing

Many people are skeptical about spending money on getting their car detailed when they can wash it themselves for free. However, a car detail is an investment that goes a long way. It improves the appearance of your car exponentially, increases the lifespan of your vehicle, restores basic damage like scratches, and helps keep your car in top-notch condition, almost similar to when it was first bought.

Furthermore, car detailing also helps maintain the market value of your car. If you choose to resale one day, a clean vehicle that has been detailed regularly will attract more buyers and fetch a higher price.

The different types of car detailing

There are primarily two categories of car detailing:

Exterior detailing: As the name suggests, this kind of car detail works to fix the outer parts of your vehicle. An exterior detailing package is perfect for people who want their cars to look clean and shiny. Some standard processes include a car wash, waxing, buffing, and a clay bar treatment.

Interior detailing: Interior detailing packages are tailored for people whose vehicle exteriors get repeatedly dirty, so they want to skip the tedious process of cleaning it over and over. Interior detailing includes a shampoo treatment, leather reconditioning, and plastic and vinyl cleaning. These methods are a guaranteed way to get the interior of your car looking brand new.

What does a full car detail include?

Top to bottom scrub: The car is given a thorough wash, during which all parts are given special attention. Specialized products and brushes are used to clean the wheels, which are usually the dirtiest part of a car. Lug nuts and other rubber and plastic parts are also cleaned.

Paint restoration: The paint is one of the most delicate features of a car. It is also the part that often bears the most damage. During detailing, the car is first washed to get rid of grime and dust. Then a clay bar procedure is employed to remove the unwanted metal particles lingering on the surface. Then, with the help of polishing and buffing, the detailer removes light scratches and waxes the car to give it the brand-new vehicle shine you want. Wax also serves as a protective layer for the paint.

Next, the headlights, taillights, and windows are polished, and all these processes are wrapped up with an exterior trim.

Detailing the interior: The interior is vacuumed. Parts of the interior are cleaned through shampooing and leather conditioning. The interior glasses are cleaned, and if requested, additional procedures like pet hair removal are done.

Engine Bay: This step is often not included in packages, but it is extremely important. A clean engine bay increases the life of your vehicle and makes it easier to identify engine problems.

The engine bay is gently sprayed with water and then cleaned with an appropriate degreaser. After that, it is rinsed, and the plastic, rubber, and silicone parts that are prone to cracking are dressed up.

Costs and prices

The cost of car detailing heavily depends on the size of the vehicle. The range for an average-sized vehicle is $50 to $125, whereas a larger vehicle can cost you anything between $75 to $150. Other factors that contribute to hitched up prices include higher quality products and additional services such as pet hair removal.

Car detailing tips and tricks

Some handy tips to remember while detailing a car are:

  1. Detailing products do not react well to heat. Avoid doing any procedures in sunlight or while your car surface is hot.

  2. Cleaning tires last can be counterproductive as it reintroduces grime and dirt splashes to previously cleaned surfaces.

  3. Allowing cars to air dry after a wash can leave water marks on the surface. Use a Microfiber towel to dry your vehicle.

  4. Using dish soaps or other household soaps can damage the car surface as they contain ammonia. Try using ammonia-free cleaners that are specifically designed for cars.

  5. Two coats of wax are enough, and anything more than that is unlikely to stick to the surface.

Choosing the right detailer

Some of the factors you should consider while picking a car detailer are as follows:

Cost: It is essential to find a detailer who suits your budget. Even though the price range is almost standard, specific detailers have varying costs. Look for detailers who offer cost-effective packages and are open to negotiation.

Reviews: No one can guide you better than people who have already had experience with a certain detailer. Read up on the reviews and customer criticism to judge the efficiency and competency a detailer offers.

Services: This one goes without saying. It is necessary to pick a dealer who provides services that are compatible with your needs.

Professionalism: You can deduce the quality of a detailer’s work based on their professionalism. A detailer who possesses a good clientele, proper tools, and an appropriate work location is bound to be better at his job than an inexperienced detailer working from his home garage.


Car detailing may seem like an unnecessary expense at the time, but in the long run, you always get your money’s worth as your vehicle keeps both its market value and its brand new appearance for a very long time.