How to Detail a Car or Truck?

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Katie Smith

There is cleaning or washing a car and then there is detailing a car. Washing a car is simply applying soap and water to the
vehicle’s exterior, rinsing the vehicle and vacuuming out the interior. Detailing a car or truck is a completely different animal altogether.

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With an auto detail you are trying to bring the vehicle to its best possible condition, as if for resale or exhibition at a car show. It will not be necessary to detail your vehicle every time the vehicle becomes dirty, however detailing your car or truck once or twice per year is a great way to enjoy your vehicle more and preserve its market value.

Items You Will Need:

  • Tire Brush
  • Wheel Cleaner
  • Degreasing Fluid
  • Bug & Tar Remover
  • Car Wash Soap
  • Car Wash Mitt
  • Poly foam Wax Applicator
  • Microfiber Towels
  • Soft Towels
  • Window Cleaner
  • Car Wax
  • Vacuum Access or WetVac
  • Water Access
  • Bucket

Steps in Auto Detailing Process

Step One: Clean the tires, wheels and wheel wells. First spray the degreaser inside the wheel wells and onto the tires. Use the tire brush to brush the degreaser over the tires. Next spray the wheels themselves with the wheel cleaner and brush the wheels thoroughly. Immediately rinse the wheels, tires and wheel wells after brushing, proceeding one tire section at a time.

Step Two: Clean the engine. Spray a liberal application of the degreaser fluid over the engine compartment and underneath the hood. Allow the degreaser to remain on these areas for approximately ten minutes, then rinse the degreaser from the engine compartment and underneath the hood.

Step Three: Wash the car. Before rinsing and applying the car wash soap, use the bug & tar remover to remove any bugs or tar found on the paint surface. Then rinse the car thoroughly, apply your soapy water with a car wash mitt, then rinse the soapy water from the vehicle. Go over the vehicle exterior, door jams, trunk jam and gas tank container with a wet chamois.

Step Four: Clean the dashboard, vents, door panels and buttons, steering wheel, drink holders, console, etc… Our preferred method is to simply spray these interior sections with the glass cleaner and wiping the cleaner away with a soft dry towel. For cracks and tight places, use thin tools like a flat head screwdriver, a quarter or a nickel, tucked into a paper towel.

Step Five: Vacuum and clean the seats. If spots or stains exist on the seats, use a clean brush and some soapy warm water to scrub the spot clean. Apply the soapy warm water, and then allow it to remain for ten minutes or so, then brush the area thoroughly with a clean brush. Finally, vacuum the wet section(s) until dry.

Step Six: Wax the vehicle. Refer to our post, “How to Wax a Car.”

Step Seven: Clean the windows using your window cleaner and a soft dry towel.

Step Eight: Vacuum the floor of the vehicle. You should shampoo the carpet with soapy warm water and a scrub brush and wet vac the floors if necessary.

unnamed (6)Author Bio: Katie Smith is a woman who love writing about vehicle on ReviewMoon. She has just published Detail a Car review.



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