How To Do Car Detailing At Home? A Complete Car Detailing Guide
Photo by Jan Kopřiva
Car detailing is the process through which you perform certain actions like car cleaning, finishing and polishing in order to keep your car’s look new and fresh.
It can be done on the vehicle’s exterior as well as on the interior. You have to pay attention to even minor details that add up to make your car more shiny and cool.
Car detailing can also be done at home and you can do all the jobs by yourself. Here are some steps that will help you to detail your car at home. There are two parts of car detailing.
First, you will detail your car’s interior and then your car’s exterior.
- 1 Detail A Car Interior In 10 Steps
- 2 Detail A Car Exterior In 10 Steps
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Detail A Car Interior In 10 Steps
STEP 1: In detailing your car’s interior, the first step includes the removal of all the floor mats and then vacuums all the mats, floor, shelf and the dash.
In order to clean the carpet underneath, you have to slide your seats forward and then all the way backward. It will help to remove all the dust or dirt from the ground.
STEP 2: Second step includes cleaning all your carpet stains by applying a foam cleanser on them and then take a damp cloth or sponge and rub them.
Before dry with a towel, leave the surface for a few minutes and examine if these stains have been removed or not. If they are still present, repeat the same process for a few more times.
Then wash the whole area with the damp sponge and then blot it.
STEP 3: Third step revolves around the fact that if you have any carpet holes or permanent stains. You have to repair all the carpet holes and to remove permanent stains; you have to cut that area out with the help of a scissor or a blade.
Then replace it with the piece that is hidden such as underneath the seat.
Warning: If you do not have your own car, then before doing this step, ask the owner of the car and show any previous sample if you have done any to reassure the owner.
STEP 6: Use a mild, all-purpose cleaner to wipe out all the hard interior surfaces in order to remove dirt from them.
STEP 7: In step 7, you have to clean your car air vent grills with the help of detailing brushes. They should be made up of microfiber cloth and should be ultra-absorbent so that they can perform well in removing all the dirt. When you are done with cleaning, in order to give your car vent a brand new look, use some spray-on vinyl dressing.
STEP 8: This step includes the cleaning of your seats. This is the most essential process but there are different detailing methods for different seats. You can clean cloth interiors with a wet-vac extraction machine and it must be dried afterwards. Leather interiors can be cleaned with a vinyl cleaner and then hit with a leather brush.
STEP 9: After cleaning your leather seats, in order to save your leather from cracking and make it visually appealing to everyone, you should condition them as well.
STEP 10: Now you have to make your windows and mirrors clean by spraying a glass cleaner on them. If your gauge cover is made up of plastic, it is better to use plastic cleaner. You can use a microfiber cloth for washing and wiping purposes and if it is not available, use any lint-free cloth.
Detail A Car Exterior In 10 Steps
STEP 1: Clean all your wheel rims with a wheel brush or wheel cleaner. Clean your wheel rims first and leave the cleaning product on for a few minutes because it is the part where all dust, grime or grease accumulates.
It is recommended to use metal polish or glass cleaner for gleaming chrome wheels. For rough textured alloy wheels, use acid base cleaners.
STEP 2: Now it is the time to wash all tires with a whitewall tire cleaner but only if you have black walls. Then apply a tire dressing on them in order to give them a glossy finish. You can wipe it off with a cotton cloth to give a matte look.
STEP 3: In this step, wrap up all your electronic components in plastic under the hood and spray degreaser on all parts.
STEP 4: Use a vinyl or rubber protectant and dress up all the non-metal areas under the hood. Allow the protectant to soak in, give it a few minutes to give a glossy and shiny look. If you want a matte look, you can wipe it off.
STEP 5: You have to be more careful about tinted windows. Unlike factory tinting, you have to be more careful about market tinting as it is degradable and cane have ammonia or vinegar containing cleaners. You have to check all your cleaners before applying them.
STEP 6: Now, wash the exterior of your car with the help of car wash soap. Let the surface of your car cool and use a microfiber towel to trap all the contaminants.
It is recommended to dish wash all the detergent strips to accelerate the oxidation process.
Always wash from top to down and do not let the soap dry. You have to wash and rinse all the parts one by one and one section at a time.
When you are about to do your final rinses, In order to minimize spots, take your spray nozzle off the water hose.
STEP 7: Use a glass cleaner to clean outside of windows. It will make your glass shine and gloss and will prevent a dull look.
STEP 9: If you want to remove bonded contaminants on the car, you can use a liquid clay bar. For this purpose, a liquid clay bar is the most effective but you can also use a traditional clay bar to remove sap.
STEP 10: Now to give a final touch to your car and give it a glossier look, use car polish or wax on it. Polish is used to give a shiny look to your car, whereas wax is used as a protectant.
It is recommended to use your machine in a lengthwise section and not circular. You have to pay special attention around your door jambs, behind the bumper or around door hinges.
It is the time to finish your auto detailing by buffing it with a machine and for hard-to-reach areas, you can use your hand.