The Best Tools for DIY Detailing Your New Car

We understand that cleaning your car can be a hassle. It’s not fun to spend hours washing your car, so it doesn’t look like a puddle of mud. What if you could make your car smell brand new? Is it still a form of discipline? 

It probably won’t happen. Instead, if you’ve done all the work yourself, it will be a rewarding experience. That’s one of the perks of doing your car detailing at home.

The standard interior detailing process is far more extensive than the classic exterior detailing process (aside from major paint correction). According to my own experience and that of others I’ve worked with, interior detailing is more time-consuming than standard exterior detailing. It’s just a little more complicated.

Even though á la carte interior detailing necessitates more labour and equipment, many operators offer it at a lower cost. Consider the time required for interior vs. exterior detailing before settling on a price.

Why Should You Detail Your Car?

Car detailing is a terrific method to bring your vehicle back to its former glory. Car detailing can clean your vehicle more thoroughly than a standard car wash. Using this product assures that your car will always look its best.

Waxing and polishing the vehicle are both possible steps in the detailing procedure. When selling your automobile, car detailing will ensure that you obtain the best price possible. A clean automobile, inside and out, and the satisfaction of doing it oneself is the best reward.

Car detailing is a meticulous cleaning procedure to enhance the finer points that give your vehicle its showroom appearance (bearing wear & tear). If you want to keep your car looking its best for a long time, you’ll need to perform various complex tasks.

There are a lot of techniques involved in the art of car detailing because of this. The global car detailing industry is now a multi-billion dollar business because most car owners prefer to leave the job to professionals.

However, this does not rule out the possibility of learning to detail a car at home.

Many people are unaware of a few interior design techniques, even if they aren’t precisely “guarded secrets.” However, just a few tools can make a huge difference in a detailer’s ability to distinguish themselves from the rest.

DIY Tips and Tricks for detailing

Here are some professional-level detailing tips to improve your detailing abilities, whether you’re a professional or a weekend warrior.

Brushes for Interior Detailing

Detailing brushes are great for cleaning radios that are caked with dust and grime and buttons, seats, and other hard-to-reach places in your car. In addition, the soft bristles of interior brushes make it easier to apply cleaners to specific parts of the vehicle, making it easier to detail the interior.

Synthetic and boar hair are available depending on the level of agitation. Some have longer hairs and longer handles to get into places that are difficult to access. If you’re a professional interior decorator, you’ll want to stock up on these brushes.

Carpet Extractors for Difficult Stains

You may be able to restore the appearance of the dirty carpet by using a foaming degreaser and then vacuuming, but there are times when you need to lift the dirt out of the fibres. That’s where a carpet extraction machine comes in.

Water is sprayed onto the carpet with a trigger and then sucked back into the machine, which can be heated or not. These are a must-have if you’ve got dirty carpets that aren’t coming clean with your current method.

Select the Correct Vacuum Hose 

As I found out the hard way, vacuum attachments can be handy, even if you’re forced to use a Shop-Vac or other vac without them. Interior design can be made easier with the help of these attachments:

In various sizes, the bristles make it easy to remove grass and other debris from the carpet.

These appear to be standard hose attachments that have been flattened or stepped on. You can use them to vacuum between chairs or in tight spaces where you may only have a half-inch of space to work with. It’s my go-to attachment for opening and closing doors and other narrow openings.

For the most part, these small brush attachments and crevice attachments are sold in kits on Amazon or other online detailing stores. In addition to the standard attachments, you can purchase additional adapters and kits for cleaning automobile interiors.

For Debris, Use Compressed Air

It doesn’t matter what tool you use, and vacuums can’t always get rid of all the dust and debris trapped in small crevices and corners. However, small air compressors are helpful in this situation.

Compressed air can remove tiny dust particles from vents, cupholders, dashboards, consoles, and anywhere else. Great for clients who care about the smallest of details.

Cleaning Carpet Stains with Diluted Degreasers

Dirt and grease can be removed from carpets using diluted degreasers and cleaning agents. To get the best results from Purple Power, you’ll want to dilute it about 5 to 1 with water before applying it to carpets and other interior surfaces like walls.

Empty spray bottles work well for diluting degreasers, which are notoriously potent (but also great for spot cleaning). All you need to dilute whatever you’re using is pure (distilled) water.

Spot Cleaning With Steam 

Many detailers use a product like the Tornador to apply pressurized steam to small stained areas instead of using a large carpet extractor.

These devices can be used on doors, cupholders, and any other area that needs to be cleaned or sanitized, making them ideal for interiors. Astonishingly, the cleaning power of these machines is clear to see.

Use an electrical contact cleaner to remove stubborn buttons from radios and steering wheels. This stuff works wonders on those unsightly buttons covered in anything from soda spills to body oils. It comes in an aerosol can with a straw and is ideal for cleaning vents and other areas with compressed air.

So you don’t have to be concerned about doing any kind of electrical damage to radios or wiring when you use them. Make sure the seams are clean between them.

One area often overlooked when cleaning leather seats in the area between the seat seams. When crumbs, dirt, and other debris get lodged in these seams, it can be difficult to vacuum them up.

It is essential to open up the seams of quilted leather so that sand and other particles can be removed.

There are a variety of brushes designed specifically for dusting the inside of automobiles that you may not be aware of.

The Original California Dash Duster is an excellent tool for cleaning dusty dashes and keeping your microfiber towels a little cleaner.

Instead of moving the dust around, these dusters use paraffin wax embedded in their fibres to lift the dust. Most interior dusters are multipurpose and can remove large amounts of dust, pollen, and other debris from dashboards, interior trim, and doors.

Sand Tape and Silly Putty

Sand from the beach can be found all over the interior of a vehicle if you’ve been in the detailing business for any length of time.

Some detailers use sick putty to remove sand from crevices in leather, door panels, and more.

Scotch tape is also helpful in removing sand that is difficult to vacuum up, such as in the case of a sandstorm (like trunks). The sticky side should be facing up as you wrap your hand around it and then pat away.

Remove the Offgas from the Windshields 

How can you clean a car and leave it looking greasy or hazy even after doing so? Offgassing, which occurs when the sun vaporizes dashboard plastic and causes it to evaporate and stick to a car’s interior windshield as it cools, is possible.

Offgas are more common in newer vehicles, but they can be remedied by using Invisible Glass or another glass cleaner to clean the inside of the client’s windshield. However, you may need to use a little more force to get it out.

Seat Brushes for Vinyl and Leather

Using the proper leather cleaning equipment can make all the difference in the world. Because I drive a car with leather seats, I’m debating whether or not to add the vinyl and leather brush shown above to my detailing arsenal. It looks like an iron with a soft bottom that’s used for applying leather conditioner to seats.

If you’re like me, you can simply apply a leather conditioner with a soft microfiber towel. This vinyl and leather cleaning brush, on the other hand, is capable of removing stubborn dirt that a towel may not be able to remove.

Deodorizing the Interior

Vents may still be emitting foul odours or smell even after you’ve done an excellent job of cleaning the interior of a car. To begin, locate the cabin air filter, which removes contaminants from the air entering the vehicle. These should be cleaned regularly because they can collect musty odours.

A long straw attached to a can of deodorizer can also circulate deodorizers through a vehicle’s air vents. You can also use a variety of deodorizing sprays designed specifically for interiors.

Cleaning Brushes – Carpet and Drill

Vacuums aren’t always enough to get rid of dirt. Using a carpet brush may be necessary in some cases to help you remove the dirt from the carpet. Many of these are made of nylon or synthetic fibre and come in various sizes.

Detailers also use a drill brush as one of their little-known tricks. To remove dirt and particles embedded in carpet fibres, this is a brush attachment bit for your standard drill. It is excellent for getting into hard-to-reach places.

Clean the Seat Belts

Detailers often skip over this area because it’s out of the way, and most people don’t know how to clean it, making it a common omission. To get rid of the stains, use an all-purpose cleaner to clean the belt, followed by the stain remover.

As a result of their propensity to retain stains, seat belts are frequently cleaned with a steamer. If your beige seat belts look dingy, cleaning them can do wonders.

Use a Pumice Stone

A pumice stone is an excellent tool for removing pet hair that has become embedded in carpet fibres. They’re just pumice stones marketed as pet hair removal tools.

For newer vehicles, it’s best to be cautious when using these products because they can remove carpet fibres if not used properly. 

Paper Floor Mats

In addition to looking great, you can see that your vehicle has been vacuumed, making it even more appealing to potential customers.

Customers are more likely to stick around if they feel their vehicle is protected, and this may seem like a minor detail, but it’s one that I rarely come across.

It’s also a great place to put any promotional information about your business, and I highly recommend it.


Tools, products, and equipment are essential for cleaning your car. For the best protection and shine, use car shampoo, which is safe for any paintwork finish and contains a deep cleaning formula with carnauba wax. In addition, we recommend wax for a long-lasting hard wax such as Original Wax or an instant shine with Quickshine Detailer.

Additionally, we suggest investing in a quality car sponge, chamois or microfibre cloth, wheel brush, and pressure washer for thorough cleaning of your vehicle.

At PAD we offer top-of-the-line car detailing service. If you’re interested in getting your car detailed you can view our services HERE. Check out our other blog articles to get updates and learn more about car detailing