Forecourt Clean : How To Detail Your Car At Home

    Posted by Ben Davidson about 6 months ago
    That smell as you get in your brand new vehicle for the first time, the creek of the leather as you adjust your seat, and the joy starting it up and putting it in gear for its maiden voyage. These are all sensations that you can expect to experience when you drive your vehicle from the forecourt for the very first time, and while you can never repeat these, you can get your vehicle to look as clean as it did that day. Read on to find out how.


    While detailing is the activity of cleaning and perfecting the finer points of your vehicle, the process has to start with a good wash. However, before you begin this task, it is essential to ask yourself whether you know exactly how to wash your car in the best possible way.

    For one, it's essential that you remove any stains or debris that have lodged themselves on the windscreen or paintwork beforehand. These may include things like salt from driving on snowing or icy roads, tree sap, and even the dreaded bird poop!

    All of these substances can harm your car's paintwork, and they can also take the paint off you try and remove them to wrong way. Therefore, it's vital that you remove them correctly before you do a full car wash, something you can find out more about in the video below.

    _Once you have got rid of these type of stains, it's time to get down to the nitty-gritty of the wash. Remove old wax residue with dish soap dissolved in water, and then use your regular cleaners afterwards. Don't forget to rinse once or twice as well to ensure that your vehicle's paintwork is immaculate.


    _Once you have washed your automobile, it's time to dry it. Yes, that's right leaving it to air in the sun and wind is a bad idea because it can cause streaks and prevent you from getting the professional finish you are looking for.

    _Therefore, instead use an air blower, or take some super absorbent _microfiber_ cloths or chamois leathers and dry the vehicle off that way.


    _Next comes the clay step, and it's one that you may not be aware of. Car clay is a cleaning material that is moldable so it can be used to get into the depressions and crevices of your vehicle and then removed any specks of dirt and dust. In fact, this is what makes it perfect for cleaning headlamps and even the spot where the windscreen joins the chassis of the car.


    _Once you have completed the clay cleaning stage, it's important to give your vehicle the once over. You will be looking for any spots that you have missed with the cleaning, or that need additional work. At this point, it may become clear that there are scratches or paint chips that need to be repaired before you can continue. Something you can find out more about how to do by viewing the video below.



    _Once your paintwork is both clean and repaired, you can then move onto the _protection_ stage. This is a vital step, yet too many people still miss this out because they are limited on time or can't be bothered to put in enough effort.

    _Primarily the protection stage is about waxing your car which is a two-step process. The first step is applying the wax, and it's important to remember to do this only in a very thin layer. Otherwise, you are unlikely to get the shine and finish that you are looking for.

    _The second stage is to buff the wax off, which is what activates the shine and creates a waterproof layer that protects your car's paintwork from the elements. To do this correctly, be sure to use the right tools such as a buffing pad. Otherwise, you will be making the job much more difficult than it needs to be.


    _Once the outside of your vehicle is gleaming, then it's time to turn your attention to the interior of your car. In particular, you should pay attention to the condition of the upholstery on the seats of your vehicle.

    _To ensure your car is forecourt clean, it is useful to use an upholstery steamer like the ones you can see _here_, as well as to spot clean any stains that are visible. If you have leather seats and find yourself fighting a particularly lousy stain, then it's worth giving the old toothpaste trick a go. Although, please remember not to scrub too hard as many pastes have a granular texture now and they can damage the leather as well as clean it.  


    _Once the inside of your vehicle has been cleaned to perfection, you can move outside once again and completed the job. To do this, you will need to look at the wheels and hubcaps. Luckily, there are quite a few products on the market that can help with this such as tire dressing.


    _Tire dressing is a liquid that you can apply to the rubber tire itself that will make it look blacker, and more even in color. Then, don't forget to use a soft cloth and some appropriate metal or plastic polish to get a good shine on your rims to complete the look.




    _Lastly, it's worth cleaning the windows of your car both inside and out. Of course, to do this effectively, you will need only to use a small bit of glass cleaner. Otherwise, you risk streaks which can take ages and lot of extra hard work to remove.

    _Of course, if you are feeling particularly adventurous in your car cleaning exploits, you may even use some _Coca-Cola_ on the glass, something that is believed to dissolve all that little dirt particles because it contains citric acid. Although, if you are looking for a just off the forecourt finish it does sound a bit risky to me, and that is why it may be better to pick a well-known brand of auto glass cleaning instead.


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