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Is Car Detailing Worth What It Costs?

You may have heard of getting your car detailed but do not know what it entails or how much it costs. Getting your car detailed comes with plenty of benefits such as cleaning outside dirt and debris, increasing resale value, and removing internal stains. Having a clean car will not only make your car look good but make you feel proud and confident in your vehicle.

What Is Car Detailing?

Detailing your car consists of cleaning the interior and exterior. This process is much more in-depth than a car wash as it is typically done by hand by a professional as opposed to a quick clean through a car wash. Services provided during car detailing can include sealing and waxing, polishing, vacuuming, leather trimming, and perfuming.

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Why Should I Get My Car Detailed?

While going through a car wash is great for a quick and occasional wash, your car should be detailed regularly. This helps to prevent dirt and grime buildup that would ultimately cost more in the long run to clean. Regular cleaning will keep your paint in optimal condition by applying a fresh coat of wax to keep the color fresh and reduce scratches. Your engine will also be cleaned, allowing it to run smoothly by removing dust, leaks, and dirt.

Levels of Car Detailing

There are different levels of service that are offered by shops. The level determines what is included in the car detailing service. Basic detailing usually includes an exterior wash and interior detailing of vacuuming and shampooing. As the level goes up, more intricate services are provided.

Interior Car Detailing

When it comes to cleaning, the interior of the car is just as important as the exterior. Dirty windows can easily interfere with your view while driving, as well dirt and grime hindering switches and knobs from working properly. Multiple steps are used to keep the interior of your car spotless and smelling fresh:

  • Vacuuming- Areas such as the seats, headliners, rear cargo area, trunk, and shelf will be vacuumed. Hard-to-reach areas will be cleaned with an air compressor.
  • Brushing and Steam Cleaning- Thorough scrubbing will be done on the mats to remove built-up stains and blemishes.
  • Glass Cleaning- All glass is cleaned with a glass cleaner to ensure it remains sparkly and free from obstruction.
  • Leather Trimming- The leather is cleaned with leather cleaner and soap. A damp cloth will take off the excess soap. A specialized conditioner is used on leather that is dry.
  • Re-Vacuuming and Wiping- The car is once again vacuumed for any parts that may have been missed. Dashboards and windows will be wiped down with a clean cloth and detergent.
  • Perfuming- Afterwards, perfume is used in the car for a lingering fresh scent.

Exterior Car Detailing

The outside of your vehicle is what everyone sees, making it crucial to keep well kept. Exterior car detailing will ensure your car is free from dirt and leaves with a shining gleam. Usually, exterior cleaning includes:

  • Washing and Drying- The outside is sprayed with a high-powered spray followed by a hand wash of the rims of the car, door jambs, glass, and all exterior components.
  • Claying- Impurities are removed from the exterior by the use of a clay bar as this removes more than normal detergent.
  • Polishing- After regular use, cars begin to lose their shine. Once cleaned, the original polish of the vehicle is restored.
  • Sealing- Sealant is applied to the car to give it a shine.

What Does Detailing Cost?

As mentioned previously, there are different tiers associated with car detailing. It will also vary depending on the size of your vehicle and your geographic location. Generally, you should expect to pay within the range of $50-$300 to have your car expertly detailed.

Basic cleaning of an average-sized vehicle, costs between $50-$125. An SUV or van typically has a cost range of $75-$150.

There are additional services that can be included in your detailing, and these will add to your base price. Some added services can also include boats, RVs, and even motorcycles.

Additionally, some shops offer coupons online. Some may even offer a discount if more than one vehicle is getting serviced.

How to Choose a Car Detailing Service

When allowing your car to be serviced, you want to ensure you can trust the shop to take care of your car as you would. Here are some tips on finding the best car detailing service:

  • Review customer reviews and testimonials online
  • Ensure that the car detailing service offers a warranty
  • Find services that are done by hand
  • Look for packages that offer multiple services

It may be tempting to choose the cheapest car detailing service, but this is not always the best route. Selecting a higher level of detailing will show in the quality of work done by the technicians. If you do not want the most expensive package, try going for the middle of the road for a high-quality clean.

Can You Detail a Car Yourself?

Going to a shop to get your car detailed is easy as they do all the work. Some vehicle owners prefer to take care of their car on their own and will opt to detail it themselves. Shops have everything that professional detailers need to provide the service, but you can get most of these supplies as well. To benefit the most, you can buy these supplies when they are discounted.

How Car Detailing is Beneficial to the Car Owner

When your car is clean and shining, it gives you a sense of pride. Detailing your car will save you money as less gas is used when the engine is running smoothly. Maintenance costs are ultimately reduced as dirt and debris are removed from other important parts of the car for optimal use, such as headlights. Additionally, the chance of accidents are reduced as dirt is removed from the driver's view.

When you detail your car, you will find that you are cutting down costs and increasing your confidence in your well-kept vehicle. Maintaining a clean car from the inside out will increase the resale value and keep it looking brand new.