Auto detailing is the process of deep cleaning and restoring your car so it stays in the best possible condition. There’s nothing like a clean, fresh-smelling car, and detailing your vehicle every so often can keep it looking its best, even if you have an older model. At Huffines Chevrolet Plano, we’ve put together this guide with a few tips to help you improve your maintenance routine and make your car sparkle and shine like new so you can retain its resale value.
Thoroughly Clean Your Floor and Mats
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Floor mats are one of the easiest components of your car to clean since they can easily be removed and vacuumed. They can be an especially useful investment if you want to prevent the carpet on your car’s floor from becoming dirty and worn-looking. Mats can make it easier to remove water, food, and other spills. The first step to cleaning your car’s floor is removing any mats in your car.
If you have rubber mats, you can spray them down with a hose until they’re clean. If you have carpeted mats, you can vacuum them thoroughly or run them through a washing machine. Once you have your mats out, use the vacuum to gather and remove any debris or trash. Don’t forget to get under the seats. You can use a handheld vacuum to get into places that are harder to reach.
Deep Clean in and Around All Seats
Like the floor of your car, your car’s seats may need to be thoroughly vacuumed and wiped down. If you have leather seats, it’s especially important to get in between the seams of the seat, where crumbs, dirt, and dust often hide from view. If you have quilted leather seats, you can mix a solution of water and liquid soap or white vinegar and spray it on the affected area to more easily remove trapped particles.
It’s also helpful to start with a handheld vacuum to clean up the larger particles before you move on to a smaller brush. If you notice a lot of stains on the seats, you may want to use a special stain remover.
Use a Car Duster and Antibacterial Wipes on Hard Surfaces
Your car’s dashboard, armrests, and cup holders can often get built up with dust and dirt if you haven’t cleaned them in a while. There are certain types of dusters made specifically for your car’s interior, perfect for dusting off your dashboard and other surfaces inside your car. These dusters will lift off the dust, dirt, and debris stuck to the trim, doors, cup holders, consoles, and other surfaces. After you’ve gotten the majority of dust off the surfaces, you can use an antibacterial wipe to thoroughly wipe down surfaces. Make sure to wipe the surface dry with a clean cloth.
Clean and Sanitize Your Seat Belts
As you’re focusing on your car’s interior, it’s important to remember to clean and disinfect your car’s seat belts. Seat belts are among some of the most frequently touched components in your car’s entire interior, but they can sometimes become neglected in the cleaning process. To clean seat belts safely, you should fully extend your seat belt out from its socket and lock it in place with a clip. You can then use a degreaser or an all-purpose cleaner to remove fingerprints and any grime that’s accumulated on your seat belt.
Invest in an Air Freshener
Even if you’ve thoroughly cleaned the interior of your car, you may still notice lingering odors from old cigarette smoke, food, or the remnants of a spilled drink. Investing in a new air freshener can help to remove odors and keep your car smelling fresh and new. Look for air freshener with a strong scent, like citrus, mint, or flowers. Most air fresheners have a latch that you can attach to your air filter or a string that you can loop over your rearview mirror.
Rinse Your Car Before Washing It
Before you go over the exterior of your car with soapy water, you’ll want to remember to rinse it off with water before you apply any soap. By first rinsing off your car, you can dislodge larger dirt particles, dust, and grit from the road. Applying soap right to your dry car can cause scratches and smear the dirt and dust even deeper into your paint finish.
Once you’ve rinsed off your car, you can lather your mitt or towel with the cleaning solution and clean it in sections. Avoid using household cleaner, as this could potentially damage your paint. Instead, look for a professional cleaning solution that’s specific to cars. For the wheels, use a hose with a nozzle that has a good water pressure setting so you can be sure you’re getting around the wheel wells.
Wax Your Car
Waxing your car is a great way to preserve your paint coat and protect it from the elements. For a professional look, you can use a power buffer to apply wax before removing it with a soft cloth. Your car must be spotless before applying a layer of wax, as a dirty surface can lead to scratches in the paint. Make sure you’re covering every area of your car evenly.
Besides detailing your car, it’s important to remember to take it in for regular maintenance. At Huffines Chevrolet Plano, our professionally trained technicians are proud to offer a variety of services to help your vehicle last a long time, whether you need an oil change or a full inspection. Schedule your service online, or stop by our dealership in person.
Hopefully, our guide has given you plenty of tips to help you detail your car like a professional so you can boost its value. Is there something you feel we should have included? You can let us know by filling out our contact form, and we’ll be sure to add it.