Tricks and Tips for Cleaning Your Car (Inside & Out!)
The warm weather isn’t the same with a dirty car. Give your ride some pride by detailing your vehicle inside and out. Doing it yourself can be fun and rewarding. You know that all of the junk is cleaned out, and you can control how deep you clean. To get started, work on the outside first, and work your way in.
- Go in Sections: It’s hot out, so if you try to wash the car all at once by yourself, then part of the car will dry before you’re done. This’ll leave spotty soap scum over the body of the car. To avoid this, wash and rinse the car in sections. Do the front and left side together. Rinse the car, and wet the opposite to get ready to wash. Then do the back and the right side together. Once you are done, wet the entire car once more.
- Don’t Skimp on the Products: The products that you use can make your job hard or easy. It’s well worth it to spend a few extra dollars to save some elbow grease, time, and protect your paint job. Poor products make you bring out your big guns and put a lot of muscle into it. That may have worked for the Karate Kid, but you don’t want to waste all of your energy on scrubbing the car. Let the products do the work. Getting a powerful soap will cut through grease and bugs like nothing.
- Wheels After the Body: After you’ve washed the entire car, move onto the tires. Use a special soap that is made for chrome to get in the cracks and crevices. After the car is dry, spray tire shine on the rubber and rub it in to make the car really sparkle.
- Dry With A Clean Cloth: Don’t use dusty old rags that have been collecting dirt in the garage to dry off your car. You’ve spent all this time getting it clean. Don’t get it dirty again. Use a clean cloth, and put it in the washing machine after it’s used.
- Squeegee Windows: Don’t wipe the windows off with the towel. Use a squeegee that is designed for glass. The cloth will leave fuzz and streak marks all over the the clean window. Always squeegee the water down in one fluid stroke. If it drips, then dry the body of the car with the clean cloth
- Dust: First use a cloth to dust the hard surfaces. To keep the dust from settling down on the surfaces again, have a vacuum going while you are dusting. Using a cling grab duster is excellent for those little spaces. Slide the duster in and out of the air vent to grab everything that’s hard to reach.
- Shine Hard Surfaces: Use a product like Armor All to clean and shine the dashboard, console, and door handles. Use paper towels or a clean cloth to get all of the junk off of the hard surfaces.
- Vacuum: Use a high powered vacuum to suck up the dirt and debris on the seats. Make sure to remove any carpets that are able to come out. Slide the chairs back and forth to get underneath.
- Shampoo Carpets: After vacuuming, give your carpets a good shampoo with a handheld carpet cleaner. You want something that will scrub the fabric and soak up the shampoo while it goes. After you are done, let the car air dry with the windows cracked for about 3-4 hours.
Pro Tip: To de-smoke your vehicle, use a can of Dakota Non-Smoke. Hold the can about 12-14 inches away from the fabric and spray a light coat. Spray some of this directly into the intake vent. Close the windows and let it sit for about one hour. It smells like baby powder, but that will go away after a few days.