Most of us own a vehicle or a car. When we purchase a vehicle, there are a lot of things that crawl along with it, and maintaining it one of them which is the most important one. Talking about maintenance, cleaning the car externally is definitely not it.
When it comes to cleaning the car, the most common term we come across is a car wash. It is less often that we hear about interior detailing. Getting the interior of your car cleaned is as important as cleaning it from the outside. The debris and UV rays do no good to your car so it is always better to be protective.
As not everyone is aware of interior detailing or car detailing, I will comprehend the idea of the same. Many people bewildered between car wash and interior detailing and end up thinking them the same. Whereas, these two are very different things. The difference between the two and more details are discussed further in the article.
What Is Interior Detailing?
Interior car detailing means cleaning the interior of your car throughout with the help of tools. Almost every car has complicated interiors which include a number of slots, compartments, and trays. Therefore it becomes pretty tough to reach out to every corner of your car. Thus interior detailing requires skills as well as special tools.
To put it in simple words, interior detailing is cleaning your car and restoring it back to its new condition. It protects your car from long-term damage. The word “detailing” itself describes that it’s a task that requires time and precision to get perfectly done.
Interior Detailing Vs Car Wash
Interior detailing and car washing are often confused with one another. Additionally, there is one more service called Exterior detailing of cars which fix scratches and dents on the outer side of your car. But for now, let’s focus on interior detailing. Even though both interior detailing and car wash are methods that do the work of cleaning your car, there are significant differences among them.
Car wash includes cleaning of dust and mud patches on external surfaces. For car wash, we use tools like jet spray, shampoo, sponge, and cleaning solvents. It does not really require any expertise to wash your car from outside. It is something we all do. Car wash does not need much effort and hence mostly costs less.
Whereas interior detailing is quite a tedious task to perform. It usually consumes more time than your car wash. It requires different brushes, vacuum cleaners, and other tools. Interior detailing is often offered at a slightly higher cost than car wash service. Also, it is not easy to carry out interior detailing yourself like a car wash is.
Let’s take a look at common questions people have about interior detailing.
Why Is Interior Detailing Required?
It is true that the color and external condition of your car is what everyone looks at and that’s why most people wash their cars regularly. A clean car always creates a good impression. However, we need to understand that we spend most of our time inside the car and not outside just looking at it. Therefore the condition of your car interior matters as much as your car’s outer appearance does.
The internal mess is not easily visible like the dust on your car. The interior of your car starts getting dirty gradually with each trip you take with your family and friends. Crisps of chips, paper pieces, dust, etc. start getting accumulated in your car slowly. It makes an unpleasant environment inside the car due to bad odor. That’s why interior detailing is needed from time to time. It restores the health of your car and gives you an experience of a clean interior much like a brand new car.
How Often Interior Car Detailing Should Be Done?
The time period in which you would carry out an interior detailing totally depends upon your usage. If you use your car daily as a commutator, then there are higher chances of your car getting dirty. Therefore you can get interior detailing done every three months. If you are someone who takes out the car occasionally for trips with family and friends, then your car is not much exposed to dirt. In such a case, you can get your interior detailing done after three to four trips.
There isn’t a fixed or exact time to get interior detailing done. It depends on how much you use your card and in what manner. For instance, if you are someone who keeps windows open throughout the journey then it’s more likely that your seats and air conditioning ducts will catch dust. It is advisable that you get it done along with your car service. To summarize, the more often you do car detailing the better your car becomes.
How Much Does Interior Detailing Cost?
The interior detailing is a task that requires much work and attention from workers. Therefore it often costs more than your regular car wash. Prices of interior detailing are not standardized and depend on several factors and also places. Interior detailing service is often offered in terms of a package that includes a variety of processes.
The pricing mainly depends on the package you choose. For a basic package the detailers cost somewhere around $50 to $80, which includes all the basic work like vacuuming, windshield wash, mat cleaning, tire wash and cleaning of seats. On the higher end, it includes more and more services and the use of higher quality products for the cleaning process. In such cases, it may cost you anywhere between $80 to $200 depending upon the package you choose.
These prices vary with the size and type of cars. The small and averaged sized cars require less detailing and hence cost less. The bigger vehicles like SUVs, Jeeps, or vans have more detailing work for detailers and thus charge at a higher rate. Generally detailing companies do offer separate plans for different categories of vehicles.
The pricing of interior detailing also depends on factors like the region you live in and the reputation of the detailing company. The more the reputed company will have the most professional and skilled detailers.
What Does Interior Detailing Include?
Similar to car wash, interior detailing is something everyone can perform in their own garage. However, you will see a noticeable difference when detailing is done by professional detailers. There are plenty of companies that offer interior detailing. It is done at most car wash centers or service centers.
Different companies may offer different services or different plans for car detailing. It is ideally recommended that you get it done by a professional but if you think that you can do it then you can surely do it. The list below shows the basic services interior detailing includes or the basic processes you should get done.
- Vacuuming :
The first process included in interior detailing is sucking out all the dust particles and debris. Different types of attachments are used with vacuum machines to reach every part of your car. The blower is sometimes used to clean dust from inaccessible parts. Seats, trunk, headliners, carpets or mats, shelf, and rear cargo area are vacuumed.
- Brushing and Scrubbing :
The mats are then taken out for washing. The rubber mats are shaken to remove any loose dust. Then mats are sprayed with water under pressure to get rid of all the mud accumulated on it. To remove remaining stains scrubbing and brushing is done with the help of a soap solution with slightly warm water along with a brush and baking soda if needed. Then the mats are left hanging to allow them to get dry completely till the rest of the interior is cleaned.
- Glass Cleaning :
Windshield and windows appear a lot clearer after interior detailing. Special glass cleaner solvents are used to clean glass instead of soap water which usually leaves stains. It gives a clear view to the driver and sparkling clean windows make your car shine.
- Leather Trimming :
The leather parts like seats and some of the dashboard or door parts are cleaned using a leather cleaner. A slightly damp cloth is used to clean seats with leather cleaner applied because excess water is not good for leather and it can seep into the cushions of your seats. A leather conditioner is sometimes applied if the leather seems dry. The conditioner helps to get the shine back.
- Perfuming :
After all the above procedures, once again everything is vacuumed and wiped with dry cloth. To replace the smell of soap and various solutions, deodorant is sprayed inside the car. It makes the interior smell fresh and clean.
Advantages Of Interior Detailing
Interior detailing is very beneficial when the long-term health of any car is considered. It helps to keep your car in good condition over a number of years. Here are few advantages of interior detailing.
- Improvement In Car’s Physical Appearance – The clean and fresh feel of a brand new car begins to fade away after a few years. The main reason is not the engine or outer color but it’s the interior of your car. Condition of engine or paint can be handled by regular servicing and re-painting respectively. But the interior of your car’s cabin is usually not repairable. Most of the parts are replaceable but cannot be repaired. Hence interior detailing helps to maintain the condition of your cabin in a good condition.
- Extends vehicle’s Life Span – Detailing helps to slow down the aging of your car. Clean compartments, well maintained leather seats and an overall dirt-free cabin can help improve the lifespan of your car.
- Better Resale Value – Resale value greatly depends upon the interior of the car. A regular interior detailing routine will maintain the health of your car. It will end up giving you a better resale value if you ever think about selling your car.
- Saves Money – Interior detailing may sound like an extra expense but in the long run it saves you a lot more money than you spend on detailing service. If you ignore detailing sessions completely then you may have to spend your money in replacing and repairing different parts affected by the accumulation of dirt.
- Provides Better Ventilation – A lot of dust gets accumulated on carpet or mats of cars. Dust gets caught by filters of air conditioners or vents. During detailing all dust is cleaned which gives a clean and healthy cabin. It makes the air more breathable and free of dust.
If you are thinking about getting your car’s interior detailing done by yourself or you just want to know little more about detailing here are the tools you will require before getting started.
Tools Required For Interior Detailing
The ultimate difference between interior detailing and exterior detailing is the tools itself. There’s a wide range of different tools required to get done interior detailing most effectively. There is a lot of difference between cleaning your car with just a cotton cloth and cleaning with the help of proper tools. Let’s take a look at these tools one by one.
- Microfiber Cloth: Microfiber cloths attract dirt more easily than regular cotton cloth. Also, they don’t leave any marks or stains after the cleaning which is very important while cleaning the windshield, and it is useful for both interior and exterior cleaning.
- Cotton Swabs: These small swabs come very handy when it comes to cleaning trickier parts of your car interior. They are extremely helpful in cleaning vents of a/c.
- Portable Vacuum Cleaner: A vacuum cleaner is must when it comes to interior detailing. It helps in cleaning mats or sucking up debris stuck between narrow parts or in between seats.
- Detailing Brushes: You will use these different types of detailing brushes almost everywhere while cleaning your car. They help to speed up the process. Some types of brushes even help you to get rid of pet hairs from the seats.
- Leather Cleaner And Conditioner: Leather cleaner is a special cleaner having properties like balanced pH and is biodegradable. Such solutions help to clean dirt, oil, ink or any other spills. These cleaners remove the stains completely without affecting the condition of the leather. A leather conditioner makes sure that leather is not looking dry and offers maximum enhancement and protection to the leather.
- Screen Wash Liquid: Always use such solutions to clear any glass in your car. Mix the solution with water and clean the windshield, windows, or mirrors using a microfiber cloth. It removes dust and pollution film from your screen and gives a clear vision.
Winding Up | Interior Detailing
There is no doubt, you should get your car’s interior detailing done regularly. A simple detailing gives you so many advantages and overall a good riding experience. It is certainly worth spending $50 to $100 at least twice a year to get your car running longer in a good condition. Visit the nearest interior detailer to know more about the services offered. If you have any queries or suggestions, feel free to comment down.