The car performed flawlessly during your road trip. Now it’s time to show some appreciation by detailing inside and out. Plus, it makes the car look better and provides long-term benefits.
“Caring for your vehicle can increase resale value,” said James Franklin, past chairman for the trim segment of the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association. “There are lots of good products that help keep your car interior in good condition and help reduce wear.”
No worries, our experts offer some helpful tips that will have the car looking sharp and ready for its next adventure:
- Consider using an all-in-one wash-and-wax product. It saves time and adds shine to plastic or textured parts
- Use a terrycloth, microfiber towel or sponge made specifically for vehicles to help prevent scratching
- All-in-one products are no substitute for a traditional car wax, but they prolong the life of the existing wax protection and add shine with no more work than a normal wash
Rob McCarter, marketing manager for Eagle One, makers of Nanowash and Wax.
- Clean the wheels every time you wash the vehicle exterior
- Use acid-free cleaner
- Apply with a wash mitt or soft brush—not tools with metallic bristles
- A layer of polish or traditional auto wax provides protection against filth
Adam Bateman, sales and marketing director for Wizards Products, a Minnesota-based polish and wax company.
- Start with clean, dry tires. The tire dressing will adhere better, last longer than otherwise, and look better
- Let the dressing dry for at least an hour, or overnight with certain applications. Wet or gloppy tire dressing may fling off the tires and onto the outer edges of your car’s underbody while you’re driving
Ron Fausnight, research and development manager for ITW Global Brands, makers of Black Magic and Rain-X.
- Vacuum frequently. Regular vacuuming helps remove odors and allergy-causing particles that accumulate in porous materials
- Clean up spills quickly. They can turn into permanent stains if not treated right away. Use a carpet or upholstery spot cleaner according to the manufacturer’s recommendations
- Read manufacturer labels carefully before applying cleaners, and test a small amount by applying it to an inconspicuous spot
Jim Dvorak of Mothers, Southern California-based polish and wax company.