Tap to Read ➤

How to Keep Your Car Feeling Brand-New

Keeping your car just like the day you bought it, clean and perfect!
Finnegan Pierson Oct 5, 2019
You love your car. It’s your baby, you try to keep it in its best condition but sometimes that doesn’t always work out. You always admire others’ shining cars and wonder how they manage to keep it looking so gorgeous all the time.
Well, the short answer, they can tell you, is plenty of love and hard work. In case you're unclear about how to get a car in pristine condition, this article is for you.

Detailing at home

Of course, the first decision is to decide whether you are going to do it yourself, or farm it out to a pro. But we'll assume that you want to do it yourself.
The first step is to clean the interior first. You want to begin with the interior so that if there is any splash-through, you don't have to worry about reworking the car's exterior the second time.
Start by removing the floor mats, and then inspecting the carpet, front and back. If there are any holes in the carpet, you can correct that by carefully using a razor blade and cutting a repair patch from underneath the seat. Then carefully glue it in.
If you have stains on the carpet, you need a good quality upholstery cleaning solution and a damp cloth or sponge. If the stain is stubborn, you may have to clean it two or three times, but it will soon come out.
Next, vacuum the entire works, then wash the floor mats from the top to the bottom, as dirt tends to accumulate on the top.

Before you vacuum, used compressed air to get every bit of dust and dirt that may blow down from above.
Then proceed to clean the dash and other plastic parts. A hint is that while many people use microfiber towels, the best cleaner is coffee filters. Use a little bit of water and vinegar to clean all the detailed parts, then go over it with a coffee filter as it dries.
Next, clean the glass. Again, you can use a glass cleaner, but the best cleaner is a mixture of 50 percent white vinegar and 50 percent water. Spray it on lightly, and then use yesterday's newspaper for the best possible shine you can imagine.
Finally, before putting the dried car mats down, inspect the seats. If they are cloth, use the upholstery solution to remove any stains. While if they are leather, use a leather cleaner.
Finally, put the floormats down, and add a charcoal activated air freshener behind the back of your headrest to have a car that smells great for months.

Detailing Your Car's Exterior

Begin with the dirtiest, grimiest part which are the wheels. Most detailers recommend taking the wheels off the car, one at a time. There are a multitude of tire cleaners, but plain old dish soap and water will work great. Apply and then work with a mitt. If the wheels still need work, use a tire brush. Then coat with sealant and you are done.
Next, use a two-bucket system to wash the car. Use car cleaner, not dish soap. 
Finally, use a clay bar to remove any grime. Use the plastic bag trick to see that everything is smooth by putting the bag over your hand. You will easily find any areas that need work.
Finally, wax the car, in the shade, and lightly hand buff all the streaks.