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How to Detail The Interior of a Car

how to detail the interior of a car

Detailing the interior of a car can be achieved by following the correct process, in this article I have written the guide ( how to detail the interior of a car) to help new detailers or valeters.

All detailers over time have their own process when detailing the interior of car, I hope this guide will help you find the process that works best for you.

Guide - How to Detail The Interior of a Car

Remove Personal Objects

Firstly it is important to remove any personal objects that will get in the way when starting to detail the interior of a car, items such as sunglasses, charging cables, map books, kids toys, if you try to imagine what the car would have had when in a showroom as a new car, that is what you are trying to achieve.

Also remove loose car mats as these will be cleaned and replaced later.

Vacuum Loose Dirt

The next process would be to vacuum any larger loose dirt from the vehicle making sure you vacuum floor carpet, seats and get into all the tight areas too, this includes the backs of seats and under the seats.

Removing Dust

Using a detailing brush and your vacuum cleaner, brush the dust so that the vacuum cleaner will remove it as you go, start this process from the highest points of the interior moving downwards towards the floor. The reason for this is simple if you started lower down you could possible re-contaminate areas you have already covered.

This process can be time consuming making sure you get into all the tight areas such as heating vents, steering wheel covers and door switches. Detailers will find their own method which works best for them to ensure all the areas are covered.

Cleaning the trim

Using an all purpose cleaner clean any trim by spraying the cleaner onto the surface and agitating it with a detailing brush, wipe away the dirt with a microfibre towel, it may be necessary to repeat this process in some areas that are heavily marked.

Sometimes it is a good idea to have a check list of areas you have cleaned until you establish a process that you use every time.

For example:

Drivers door card ✔️

Drivers compartment carpet trim ✔️

Centre console trim ✔️

Drivers foot pedals ✔️

Use a larger detailing brush on larger trim and a small detailing brush on hard to reach areas, be sure to look closely at each area of trim you are working on to achieve best results, areas such as cup holders can be heavily soiled in the bottom of the holder, and also door pockets.

A good quality all purpose cleaner and detailing brush will help make this process easier.

Car Headlining

Cleaning the car headlining is achieved using a similar process as the trim but best results can be achieved by spraying an all purpose cleaner onto your detailing brush and then agitate the cleaner into the headlining with the brush, wipe cleaning solution away with a clean microfibre towel.

Car Seats

Firstly ensure all the seats are thoroughly clean from dirt use your vacuum pipe to get as much dirt out as possible. Once you have done this spray a mist of fabric cleaner onto the seats and clean with an upholstery brush, you may need to work some areas hard to remove stains but be careful not to damage the fabric itself, do small areas at a time wiping clean with a microfibre towel as you go.

With leather seats simply use an all purpose cleaner and wipe clean with a microfibre towel, if there are heavily soiled areas in the leather you may need to use a dedicated leather cleaner to achieve best results.

Vehicle Carpets

Spray a fabric cleaner onto any stains and agitate with an upholstery brush, wipe clean with a microfibre towel.

Car Door Jambs and Sills

Use an all purpose cleaner and a detailing brush to remove heavily soiled areas, such as moss and thick dirt, try to use an older detailing brush for this process and keep it separate from your clean detailing brushes.

For the lighter dirt use a quick detailer and wipe clean with a microfibre cloth.

Vehicle Floor Mats

Work on each mat separately vacuum the underside first, clean the mats using a fabric cleaner and upholstery-brush spray the fabric cleaner onto the mat and agitate with the brush, wipe clean with a microfibre towel then with your brush try to brush the pile so it all goes in one direction, this process achieves a great looking finish.

Vehicle Trim Dressing

Apply a quality trim dressing to all the trims within the vehicle and buff off with a microfibre towel.

Seat Protection

Leather seats can be protected by applying a leather conditioner using a microfibre towel to work the conditioner into the seats and then remove with a clean microfibre towel.

Fabric seats can be protected by using fabric protectant spray a mist over the fabric and wipe with a clean microfibre towel.

Carpet Protection

The same process as the fabric seats spray a mist of fabric protectant spray and wipe with a microfibre cloth.

Glass cleaning

Use a quality glass cleaner and spray onto the glass with a microfibre towel buff until there are no streaks showing, use clean water on tinted glass, always remember to lower the window and clean the areas that wind up into the door recess.

Clean both sides of the glass so that from the interior of the vehicle it always looks amazing.

Car Air Fresheners

Add your personal touch by adding a quality air freshener to the car, this will always give a wow factor when a customer sits in the vehicle.

Replace Car Mats

The final process is to replace the car mats making sure all the pile is running in the same direction and the mats are places squarely.

Conclusion - How to Detail The Interior of a Car

Detailing the interior of a car can be achieved easily by following a process that works for individual detailers.

All purpose cleaner, detailing brushes and microfibre towels are a detailers best friend.

Finishing touches such as car mat pile direction and air fresheners will always make a car interior look clean and smell amazing.

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