Detailing for the Beginner – A Basic How-To for Caring for Your Car

If it is a Sunday morning and you’re looking for something to do – why not clean off that nice car you have sitting in the driveway? However, before you go get the bucket and dirty rags you should think about the quality you’re giving your vehicle by washing it this way. You should detail the vehicle not only to clean it but to protect it and make it shine. Follow some simple steps to make sure you’re able to make your car look beautiful.

What is Needed for Basic Car Detailing:

  • Hose
  • 2 buckets
  • Wash buckets
  • Car wash soap with pH balance
  • Waffle weave microfiber towels
  • Poly sealant or wax
  • Tire conditioner
  • Foam applicator

What to do and not to do while cleaning your vehicle:


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You SHOULD use both buckets  in order to prevent the wash pad from retaining any of the contaminants on it. One with soap and water, the other with just water – use them both without cross contaminating by dipping the wash pad into the soap and applying it to your vehicle, then rinsing it off in the rinse bucket before putting it back in the soap. You would end up washing your vehicle with dirty soap otherwise. Adding a grit guard to the buckets can help you scrub the contaminants off the pad and keep them trapped at the bottom. Make sure to dry the vehicle using the microfiber cloths!

You SHOULDN’T keep the old sponge under the cupboard to clean the showers and sinks with. Sponges can trap contaminants in them since they have larger pores than a wash pad does. These contaminants are then able to leave scratches and dirt on your vehicle. Spend a bit of money and opt for microfiber cloths. Shop rags and bath towels also have harsh fibers that can leave scratches. Treat your vehicle right.

How to Clean Tires and Wheels

Using a simple car wash soap can be more than enough for some wheels. However, if your tires are pretty dirty from caked on mud, dust or road tar then you do not want the cramps from scrubbing them down so hard. Using a wheel cleaner can help the dirt and grime break down. Using a tire conditioner is a must – but keep in mind that there is a difference between tire dressing and tire conditioner. Dressings will just sit on the surface and make the tire look shiny, conditioner is able to absorb into the tire and give the tire more protection and shine.

Getting More Out of Your Shine

Waxing your car is something probably everyone has heard of before. However, you also have the choice to use a poly sealant or Carnauba wax. Poly sealant is usually the one most recommended for everyday car owners, but knowing some of the benefits is a must.


  • Longer lasting ~6 to 12 months
  • More durable in adverse weather conditions

 Carbauba Wax

  • Warmer, deeper shine
  • Lasts ~3 to 4 weeks

Once you’ve done a top-notch detailing job on your car, the next step is to keep it looking good.  Ask us here at Skip Chips how we can help you with all of your vehicle surface protection needs. We are able to install products inside and out in order to ensure that you’re in the right path to protection of the vehicle that you love.