Top 5 Car Detailing Mistakes

Whether you’re a seasoned professional, or a first timer, it’s easy to make mistakes while washing and detailing your car. Take a look at this list of easy-to-make mistakes to prepare for your car’s next detail session.
Man wiping hood of a truck with the WeatherTech Soaker.

Car Detailing Mistakes

Car Detailing Mistake #1: Washing Your Car in the Sun

While it may be hard to accomplish, washing your car in the shade is much better for your paint and finish. The heat from the summer sun will dry the car wash or detailing product you use faster than if you were to clean your car in the shade. Because the product will dry faster, you’ll have a difficult time working the product onto your car and you may end up with water spots.

Car Detailing Mistake #2: Washing Your Wheels and Tires Last

Most of us have been taught to start from the top and work down when washing your vehicle. But here’s a suggestion to start with your wheels and tires first. If you wash your car first, all of the grit, road grime and brake dust from your wheels and tires will end up splashing on your newly washed car. If you start with your wheels and tires, and wash them separately from the rest of your car, you’ll prevent the splash back from ruining your wash and detail work. Remember to empty your wash bucket before you start on the rest of your car to prevent the grit and grime from your tires and wheels scratching your paint.

Car Detailing Mistake #3: Use Appropriate Cleaning Products

Have you ever looked at the ingredients listed on the products you clean your cars with? Car cleaning and detailing products are specifically designed to be effective on car finishes, paint and other surfaces. Using products that aren’t designed for cars can do irreparable damage and end up costing you significantly more in time and money.

Car Detailing Mistake #4: Applying Products Directly to the Car

While the products used in car washing and detailing are engineered for specific applications, how you apply them matters as well. One of the worst car detailing mistakes you can make is applying product directly to your vehicle while washing and detailing your car. Follow instructions closely and use prescribed applicators to get the best results and prevent this mistake from ruining your wash and detail.

Car Detailing Mistake #5: Using Dirty Microfiber Towels

Drying and wiping your car is an important part of your washing and detailing routine. Using dirty microfiber towels will make your work all the more difficult. Make sure to use clean microfiber towels while washing and detailing your car to prevent micro-scratches to your finish and paint. Check your microfiber towels before use and be sure to wash and dry them after every wash and detail.