Categories
Auto Service

Selling a Used Car Tips

If you feel like selling a used car, which has served you for a couple of years, you should take into consideration different special factors sometimes forgotten by the car-sellers. You know, it’s necessary to understand, what a potential buyer needs to get. Some people are keen on finding fast car, the other like big and comfortable vehicles. But not depending on the life interests, hobbies and family all people want to feel safe while driving.

That means that in up-to-day world selling used car has become more difficult, because some people don’t trust private car-sellers. At this rate some companies offer their help in selling a vehicle, but you sometimes need to pay them for that and it’s not very convenient. But you are to check, whether your used car meets the international and American safety standards.

They are provided by different research institutes all over the world trying to determine the minimum safety level the car should provide. In order to find out, whether the car meets their requirements, they do crashworthiness tests and test-drives in different conditions. The most well-known among such organizations are two American institutes: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

You can use that fact in order to increase the price when selling used car. Look it up, whether your car manufacturer is included in the IIHS’ “Top Safety Pick.” This is a very big advantage for your customers, which will make your used car more attractive for them. Some of the automakers, like Subaru, are standouts for 2009 because they have at least one Top Safety Pick in every car class in which they are selling their vehicles.

And if you used car had once got NHTSA 5-Star rating, selling it won’t be a big problem for you. So, try to get the most detailed information about your car in order to sell it right.

Categories
Auto Modification

Custom Auto Painting Can Make Your Car Look Great

When deciding what car paint shop should paint your car there are a lot of things to think about. First of all you need to decide if your going to put a custom paint job on your car; then the hard work starts. After all, this is your car, your classic beauty, the perfect car for you.

If your not going to custom paint your car, all you need to know is what body shops will do a complete paint job. A collision shop makes a lot more money doing spot repair work on paint, or paintless dent removal. A lot of shops these days will not even consider doing a complete paint job, let alone a full on custom paint job. You really need to do your research about the different shops in your area. Most shops that do custom paint work are not the one that specialize in collision repair work.

You should also check out all of the shops that you research through the BBB, or your local Chamber Of Commerce. You should also ask the shops owners, or their managers for a list of references of people who have had car paint work done there in the past. If they refuse to provide you with a list of references, you should look deeper in to the shop’s history before you take your car there. It also pays to make sure that the shop has been in business for a long time, this will help do away with the fly by night shop owners.

Remember that the key idea here is to get exactly what you want in a paint job. You should never have to convince an owner of any shop that they should do your custom car paint work. I am a huge promoter of the automotive industry, but also a huge promoter of getting it done right.

Custom car paint, or a complete paint job will cost a lot of money; so you need to pay attention to every detail of the process. For just a complete repaint on your car it should take around 40 hours of work, most shops run at $60.00 – $75.00 per hour. In essence this works out to about $3,000 in just labor, and supplies can easily run from $1,000 – $3,000 so be ready for the pricing structure. This is the area where you can begin, and custom car paint will cost more due to masking, and application of the product, let alone the art work itself.

 

You can easily run a tab of $10,000 or more in custom auto paint work. Don’t be surprised if the bill looks like that either. Be ready for every event that might happen. If you pay attention to every detail you will get exactly what you want in a custom car paint job.

Categories
Auto Business

New car buying scams

Thankfully, buying a brand new car  is one of the safest ways to purchase a new vehicle.

However, it pays to be prepared – and our simple guide to some of the tricks used by the trade to improve profits is well worth reading!

 

Buying online

Although there are now lots of very diligent and reputable new car sales businesses operating online, it remains relatively easy for fraudsters to con buyers out of money by pretending to sell cars that do not exist. As a simple rule of thumb, beware of individuals or websites offering to sell cars at prices that are apparently well below market value. Look for companies that have clear contact details, including land line telephone numbers, and personalised email addresses.
Buying a stolen car

If you are buying brand new, from a franchised dealer it’s highly unlikely that you will affected by stolen cars. However, it makes good sense to check that the person selling you the car has the right to do so. Companies like HPI offer protection against buying a car with outstanding finance as well as those reported stolen.
Buying a car that has been damaged in a accident

Again, this is unlikely if you are buying brand new… But if the vehicle’s V5 registration document lists you as the second keeper it’s worth using an organitation like HPI to make sure that the car has not been damaged in an accident. This will reduce its second hand value when you come to sell it on, and at worst could even make the car unsafe.
Know your credit score

If you want to be sure you’re going to get the best possible deal, then make sure you know your credit score before you approach a dealer for a finance quote. Occasionally, dealers will say your credit score is not good enough to get a competitive agreement on the term and cost of your loan so it’s worth having it to hand.
Know the total cost of the car

Don’t be fooled into accepting a lower monthly interest rate for a longer period of time. You’ll only end up paying more for the car. Instead figure out the total you want to pay for a car and discuss this figure with the dealer – avoid telling them how much you’re willing to pay per month.

Try and negotiate a discount

The sticker price for new cars is often inflated. Dealers are expecting you to haggle – click here to see our tips on negotiating a good price. If you can’t get the price down, try and get extras thrown in, a good place to start is to ask for a full-tank of fuel.

Categories
Auto Service

Dos And Don’ts Of A Car Pressure Wash System

A car pressure washer, as its name suggests, is used for detailing cars, trucks, and most of the other automobiles. These are pressure wash machines, capable of cleaning automobile exteriors without damaging the surface.

These machines wash away dirt and impurities stuck on the surface with high pressure. The efficiency of these machines is never in question. A car pressure washer is capable of removing almost any kind of dirt and impurity present on vehicle surfaces, including dust, grease, and oil residues. The problem is related to the safety of the vehicle.

Is using pressure wash systems too dangerous to the automobiles? The answer is no. However, you have to understand the following dos and don’ts about car pressure washer machines for using these machines effectively.

Do not use high pressure machines

A pressure wash system’s effectiveness is usually measured by its output pressure. The higher is the pressure level, the greater will be the effectiveness of the machine. This is not true for power washers used for auto detailing though. Here, the power washers should not have a very high pressure.

 

Some of the brands offer specially-made car pressure washer models. It is better to use these models for cleaning vehicles. The output pressure of these machines should not exceed 1500 psi. Power washers are used mainly for cleaning the exterior of vehicles. Using a really high-powered machine would result in the paint damage.

Use a low-flow machine

Flow rate of a pressure washing machine refers to the quantity of water passed onto the surface. It is denoted by gallons per minute (gpm).

It is a more significant specification for auto detailing than for other cleaning tasks. For an auto detailing equipment, the flow rate has to be as low as possible, for two reasons. First, the best pressure washer machines having a low flow rate transfer only low quantities of water onto the surface, leading to fast cleaning.

Second, using an auto detailing equipment with a low flow rate would result in the reduction of water wastage.

The third benefit pertains to mobile auto detailing. It involves taking the portable car wash machines to the customer’s garage and cleaning the vehicle. If the drainage facilities are poor, using a portable car wash machine with a high flow rate is a big risk.

In such cases, it is better to use mobile car wash equipment having a low flow rate. Modern mobile car wash equipment having a flow rates as low as 0.5 gpm are available in the market now.

So, the best pressure washer machines for auto detailing have a pressure level of less than 1500 psi and a flow rate as low as possible, preferably less than 2 gpm.

Make your purchase decision very carefully. Look into all the important features, check out for the best brand, and then buy the machine. A wrong machine can make the cleaning task quite tedious. For easy, fast, and efficient cleaning, you require a machine that comes with all the above mentioned features.

Categories
Auto Products

How to Choose an Auto Detailer for Your Classic Car

If you’re a classic car owner, then I’m sure you’re struggled with the problem of finding a competent automobile detailer. You know, one that you actually trust your car to. Now, a lot of classic car owners just detail their own cars, but personally, I would rather pay someone responsible to do the work for me. So, how would you find someone who can detail classic cars? Here are a few suggestions.

Car Shows

Car shows need competent detailers for the cars in the show. One way to find a great auto detailer is to call up a few shows and ask them who they use. Most shows will be happy to tell you who they’re using, because they probably want to throw that company or person more work.

If you’re a car enthusiast, you probably go to a few car shows, yourself. If you’re attending a show in your area, find out who the organizers are and ask them who they use for auto detailing. They’ll probably be happy to tell you.

Luxury Car Dealers

 

Another great place to look for an auto detailer for your classic car is at a luxury car dealership. These folks have to keep their cars looking sharp. Just find the owner and tell them you collect cars, then ask them who they would recommend for some detailing work. If you tell them in advance you’re a collector, then they’ll see you as a potential customer and want to help you more.

Your Kids

Here’s what I did that worked great! When my kids got old enough, I taught them how I wanted my car detailed. I paid them well, because to do it right takes several hours. Having your own in house work force might be the best of all of these alternatives for automobile detailing.

Categories
Auto Business

Remind Honda Dealers ‘Naughty’

To achieve more profits, no naughty dealership. They deliberately withhold sales of some cars. And while there are consumers really want a car, the dealership was immediately catapulted the car selling price.

Of course it is tarnished Honda in providing the best service to consumers. Honda also reminded that the entrepreneurs and dealers really meet the needs of consumers
“I think there are some dealers who use this occasion, the dealer usually is held by traders or businessmen. So if there are 10 units of vehicles 2 units prices raised, so the problem is that consumers want.
Agent Brand Holder that the function is determining the price. Therefore, for the dealers do not try to cheat.

for consumers who have already ordered they should have gotten loot. And if consumers do not get under the agreement, it can be directly discussed with dealer or can contact the camp.

“More importantly, when consumers had ordered it to be given on time.

Categories
Auto Products

Ford Set ‘Sister’ Fiesta

Cheap car market is indeed being will become a trend. Not only in Indonesia, but also in the level of the world. Ford car manufacturers even claim to be interested to instantly create a car that could be cheaper than the Ford Fiesta.

Ford Motor Co CEO. Alan Mulally admitted that it is now carefully considering to sell the low-cost car which would take the base of the famous subcompact car, the Ford Fiesta.

However, despite intending to make a car worth under Fiesta, Ford does not intend to create a new brand.

“We are looking around the world the opportunity to sell the car under priced Fiesta.

Segments that will be entered by Ford, according to Mulally they named ‘value B’ which refers to the similarity measure in the B-segment cars like the Fiesta but with a cheaper price.

In Europe alone Ford already has valuable cars under the Ford Ka Fiesta that takes the base of the Fiat 500. But small cars like the Ford Ka is not considered as the best candidate for a global car market with diverse desires.

In any car priced alternative is to increase the company’s revenue for the world’s economic powerhouse, Asia, still hungry for affordable vehicles.

Nissan has announced it will give birth again Daihatsu in Indonesia, India and Russia will be the mainstay of their cheap car segment. Similarly, creating a brand new Renault Dacia Renault in 2004, which at the end of this year is expected to be capable of removing 1 million cars worldwide, up from 813 thousand last year.

Meanwhile, compatriot rival Renault, PSA / Peugeot-Citroen has also been announced for the show which will bear the cost model Peugeot and Citroen brands at the Paris auto show, which will be held later this month.

In Indonesia, the government is aggressively refine rules Low Cost and Green Car which will give the birth of cheap cars in Indonesia. Daihatsu, Suzuki and Daihatsu have already expressed an interest to participate in the program.

Categories
Auto Service

Radiator & Auto Cooling Systems the Basics

It can be said that to auto owners their radiator and cooling systems are at least familiar to them. Since an automobiles’ radiator and cooling hoses are readily visible under the hood, and it is estimated that up to 4 out of 5 vehicle owners routinely top up their own glycol anti-freeze liquids this is no major revelation of motoring maintenance to most.

Overall and to summarize the cooling system of your vehicle – be it car, truck, or SUV does exactly what its name suggests – it removes, reduces and fundamentally its function is to remove heat from your engine system expelling this waste heat into the nearby air. Without this essential cooling system of your “power-plant”, the heat built up from the exploding gasoline vapors (in a gas engine), would soon overheat and ultimately ruin your engine. Interestingly on the other hand, automotive cooling systems are not nearly as essential to the running and ongoing maintenance of diesel engines. Diesel engines last a lot longer than gas ones overall. Diesel fuels are essentially waste oils; they do not burn as hot. Additionally the fuel oil provides great lubrication for the pistons as they slide in their shafts, whereas in gas engines the gas vapor provides no lubrication and on top of that serves to wash oil off the engines’ cylinder walls.

Your cooling system is built so that a mixture of ethylene glycol antifreeze liquid and water flows into the passages cast into your engine block, where it absorbs heat. A water pump – generally a belt driven device, running directly off your engine itself, circulates this hot coolant liquid mixture, through the engine and then out via a standard auto coolant hose into the radiator of your vehicle.

To increase air flow through the radiator – in an effect to get more cooling power out of your rad system a fan draws air through the fins or tubes on the radiator itself. These fan systems used to be driven almost exclusively directly off another belt on your engine, now many are electrically driven, thermostatically controlled units.

How does the cooling system work overall? Waste heat from your engine is conducted via your engine “block” to the coolant fluid. Then the fluid is circulated by the water pump unit, through the channels of your engines’ heavy metal block, through the rubber coolant hoses, which you should be easily spotted when peering into your engine compartment. These coolant hoses pass from their fitting on the engine ultimately to the radiator. Thus the hot antifreeze coolant carries the engines’ waste heat from the engine directly into the radiator where the air flowing (or drawn by the working rad fan) expelling, diluting and exhausting waste excess heat from your vehicles’ motor into the nearby air.

An autos’ cooling systems runs so well, and are generally so dependable in their functions and functioning that few give the coolant and heat system its due – until problems occur. Generally it is either a case of overheating due to excessive vehicle draw, or slow driving in very hot temperatures and climates with low coolant fluid levels. However interestingly another case in point where a malfunctioning cooling system draws attention is in cold climates where a vehicles interior heating may not be not be enough coolant fluid or circulating antifreeze to allow for the vehicles’ interior car heater to warm up its occupants, or defrost the autos’ windshield sufficiently for automotive safety & driving concerns.

Categories
Auto Modification

Led Avanza MPV

After the Eid holidays, Toyota did a pretty sharp acceleration. In September Toyota has recorded total sales of 33,705 units, or approximately 30.4% growth compared to the achievement in August, a total of 25 848 units.

President Director of PT Toyota welcomes Toyota’s sales growth achieved in the last month. Moreover, the growth was achieved in almost all segments of Toyota vehicles.

Toyota grateful recorded impressive achievements in the last month, in which virtually all segments recorded growth of Toyota vehicles.
Throughout the month, the segment multi purpose vehicle (MPV) Toyota posted the biggest growth, ie 40%, of the total sales of 15,222 units in August to 21,307 units in September.

Toyota Avanza which became the backbone in this class posted sales of 14,989 units in the last month or grow to 37.8% compared to the achievement of 10,875 units in the previous month.

Meanwhile, the two line-up of Toyota products in the MPV segment, the Toyota Kijang Innova posted a 47.1% growth with total sales of 6039 units, as well as Toyota Alphard grew 15.8% with sales of 279 units.

In the segment of sport utility vehicle (SUV), Toyota recorded encouraging results with growth of 39% to the total sales of 4635 units. In this class, the Toyota Fortuner 4×2 incised very impressive results with growth of 81% from 1029 units to 1862 units in August to September.

Toyota Fortuner sales growth was driven by one of the new variants of Toyota Grand New Fortuner VNTurbo introduced in August 2012, getting a positive response at the national automotive market.

In the sedan segment, Toyota’s sales growth in the last month driven by the entry-level sedan, one of which is represented by the Toyota Vios, with a total of 1681 units. This achievement is up nearly 25% compared to 1346 units in the previous month. In total, sedan segment recorded a growth of 12.8% with sales of 2029 units in September.

Meanwhile, Toyota 4×4 segment also recorded a significant growth. Throughout the month, the class represented 4×4 Toyota Fortuner and Land Cruiser posted 31.2% growth with total sales of 206 units.

Overall, Toyota’s passenger car sales totaled 30,335 units, growing by 33.4% compared with the previous month as the achievement of 22,737 units.

Not only posted positive results in the classroom passenger vehicle, commercial vehicle sales Toyota is also experiencing growth. During the last month, Toyota Dyna recorded total sales of 2265 units or an increase of 14.1% compared to 1985 units in the previous month.

Sales of Toyota Dyna 2 ton vehicle segment in September recorded a record high this year. During the January-September 2012, Toyota Dyna has recorded total sales of 14,505 units.

Categories
Auto Business Auto Products

Adding Express Detailing Services to Your Already Successful Car Wash or Automotive Business

Express Detailing is a term, which has been marketed and inevitably defined by fixed site car washes in their attempt to increase average per ticket transactions. By using express detailing as an “add-on” service for between $35.00-$60.00 they are able to up sell a $4.99 exterior wash direct mail coupon that a customer brings in to a $40.00- 70.00 charge. Their theory is sound and tends to work well for them. A car wash in and out wash which takes 10-15 minutes for vacuum, tunnel wash and dry and then another 15-20 minutes for a solvent polymer wax, with dash and tire dressing is consistent with their industry $/hour goals. Now car wash owners have gone one step further with The Blue Coral Wax Treatment.

This is a wax put on while the car is still wet, thus eliminating the drying step. The wax is rubbed on the wet car, dries to a haze and is wiped off which dramatically increases efficiency and adds even greater revenue. Thus by speeding up the process they cater even more to the new consumers attitude. “I want it now”, the quicker the better, give me my detail, I have things to do, I’m outta here. Similar customer attitudes are found in the demands of e-commerce where you buy a product today and it shows up at your doorstep next morning guaranteed by Fed EX or Two day service by RPS, Airbourne, UPS, Emery Express, or Fed EX.

In a world of co-branding, point of destination strategies and co-op marketing, all industries are evolving and diversifying to capture greater profits within a single brick and mortar location or as is appearing more commonly on Internet web sites. In general much of the new thinking has been customer driven due to lifestyle changes, low unemployment, time factors and quality of life issues of the consumer. If you look at amazon.com which now sells tapes, records and toys when previously it was strictly a books sales site. It can quickly add new revenue streams by offering it’s customer base more reasons to buy more things. You to see the revolutionizing effect of this trend? We have on-line search engines being paid million dollars from car companies and furniture companies for their industries exclusive rights to e-commerce directly on those sites. As Starbucks begins to sell housewares on their web site, and Home Depots add McDonalds inside their stores and Bank of Wal-Mart opening it’s own brand of bank within its 5 superstores; you have to think that ‘express detailing’ at car washes is simply a natural progression. Many professional detailers would disagree saying these types of services are different animals. Some complain that fixed site car washes have ruined the true definition of the term detailing. Yet if you look closely this is nothing more than true capitalism in a free market system generating additional revenues with existing resources.

Think about it for a minute. Professional Detailing Centers often do glass repair, window tinting, pin-striping and graphics, gold plating, ozone treatment, dent repair, color sanding, upholstery repair, wood grain paneling, and even after market auto accessories. These are all industries in their own right and these industry leaders with their own definitions and trade publications and accepted operational procedures complain about us offering similar services as professional detailers. They say we are stealing their customers and not providing the same quality workmanship as the craftsmen do in those industries, which may or may not be true. For example a person specializing in upholstery repair for twenty years can obviously do a better quality job than a detailer on fabrics of almost any type. You are affecting his bottom line with an inferior service since you don’t have 20 years experience in upholstery repair understanding the dynamics of thirty different types of fabric, dyes, and manufacturers suggestions for preservation.

Should he be mad at you for offering a greater array of service to you customers? No, the upholstery craftsman will need to have his own set of value added services and products he can offer to his customers such as removing and replacing seats and headliners and using the highest grade fabrics and stainless steel screws. You must have a specialty or an area of expertise, but you must also understand and then cater to the needs and more importantly the wants of your customer. If you don’t know their wants and needs, ask your customers directly in an informal survey or indirectly during conversations.

 

Saying that fixed site car washes have destroyed the meaning of the word detailing may be true to some extent. Yet one must ask, “Did McDonalds destroy the definition of a hearty breakfast when it introduced the ‘Egg McMuffin’ in Santa Barbara, CA?” Comparing ‘express detailing’ with a complete detailing service is merely another apples and oranges issue. We as professional detailers realize that there is no comparison. Why does this make so many of us angry? It is all those years of perfection being thrown out the window? But do not look at it that way, look at it as an incredible opportunity. Channel the frustration and anger into energy and perseverance. The fixed site car washes with their quick wax, ‘express detail’ have popularized the phrase ‘detailing’ to an entirely new group of consumers who normally might not be interested in your services prior to this introduction. It is up to us to expand upon this and take advantage of the fact that now the general workforce is buying detailing services. Sure it’s inferior, but a need, a want and desire to spend money for detailing has been formally introduced. This has opportunity written all over it as Bud Abraham said in a speech he delivered at the ICA (International Carwash Association) annual conference in Las Vegas.

Many feel that this new spin on the old terminology of detailing has adversely affected the professional detailers retail business. Fixed detailers must adapt to this market challenge or loose a large percentage of their retail detail volume and thus have their profitability affected. By differentiating their service and educating customers to the definition of a ‘Full Detail’ or ‘Complete Detailing Service’ the professional detailer is able to cater to the ideal retail customer in the middle to upper income classes. Generally members of this market segment understand the difference and are aware of the value of a real detail versus an express service. This high-end crowd can be as much as 15-35% of the professional detailers retail clientele. Let’s say that a Professional Detailer has 70% of its business in new and used Car Dealerships and other fleet customers who occasionally need detailing. Vehicles such as rent-a-cars, work vans, or sales cars for corporations and 30% in individual retail, the higher per car profit of all services offered. It is not good business sense for a Professional Detailer to simply ignore that much of their customer base, and therefore they must develop a strategy to help customers and clients understand the difference between the express service and full detail.

Some of the communication problems come into play when a customer is convinced that the $50.00-$60.00 (sometimes as low as $35.00) he or she paid for an express detail is the same service they will get when they pay a $100.00+ complete detailing service. Even when the higher price comes from a professional and reputable detailing establishment and not a 30 minute ‘express service’ from a car wash. Unfortunately unless otherwise educated, perception becomes reality.

The problems are compounded when you throw the mobile detailer into the loop. Usually charging $60.00-$80.00 and then calling his detailing services a ‘full detail’. This market player is fiercely competitive for price as he attempts to establish his new business and has the advantage of on-site service. Many of these new small companies will be in business for a summer or two, or at most a couple of years. Many opt later to establish fixed sites and raise their prices due to increased capital expenditures such as a phone system, fixtures, electrical work, reclaim devises and work benches and increased overhead or rent, electricity, office supplies, water, and reclaim waste water removal. Established mobile detailers who last over two years generally develop a larger clientele and raise their prices simply because of supply and demand economics. Their prices will usually be $100.00+ for a complete detail.

Many also offer a monthly program including washes, detailing services and monthly billing. Most mobile operations have not adopted the term Express Detailing because they believe they do a better job than the car washes with regard to quality. Many mobile operations will continue the low price of their original full detail of $60.00-$80.00, but now use the term ‘mini-detail’. This allows them to charge a full detail price to new customers but still offer previous customers and those original customers’ word of mouth referrals a low price without giving away services. It also allows them to tap into the customers that may not be able to afford a real detail but still wish to have detailing services for ego reasons, being able to tell friends, “I had my car detailed.” Why own a BMW if you can’t have it detailed. This appeals to the young executive on his way up the ladder.

A few mobile detailers have used the term ‘express detailing’, which adds even more confusion to the issue. “What is an Express Detail anyway?” Most of the new mobile detailers eventually go out of business or raise prices due to environmental reclaim issues, competition, seasonal weather, lack proper image, inferior learn as you go training or lack of industry knowledge. Many of the new professional detailers in our industry come from the mobile sector and they tend to price and deliver whatever they can sell to the customer, using the word detail whenever they think it will command a higher price. They will use the word detailing loosely to sell the job.

I think it would be fair to say that the word ‘detail’ has been over used for marketing purposes at fixed site car washes and has caused problems with the definition and mystique of professional automobile detailing. It has caused havoc for those true professionals who have worked hard and sacrificed to keep the word sacred for many years and have prided themselves in the most excellent service.

Many Old Time Detailing Professionals have been forced to address this express detailing issue by adding express services to their menu of services. This appeases the customer’s desire for quick and affordable service between quarterly of semi-annual full detailing appointments. Sometimes this cannibalizes full detailing services but if done correctly it can attract new customers to your business ho will eventually try the real thing. Once they do they will be hooked forever. By letting your customer’s experience a full detailing service you will build your complete detailing customer base.

See the chart provided to us by Nicholas J. Vacco, a seasoned detailing veteran. These are the things most full and complete detailing services include:

FULL DETAILING-INSPECTION CHECK-LIST

EXTERIOR:

_____ Make sure all wax is removed

_____ Check for wax dust

_____ Check emblems and crevices

_____ Check to see if \chrome has been polished

_____ Check grill and all front areas for bug removal

_____ Look at rocker panels for tar

_____ Check wheels for brake dust

_____ Check white walls

_____ Make sure tires are dressed evenly

_____ Check wheel wells

_____ Make sure wheel well lips are clean

_____ Check all bezels for wax removal and cleanliness

_____ Check windows for smears/paint overspray

_____ Look at mirrors for cleanliness

_____ Check headlights/tail lights for cleanliness

_____ Check moldings, weather striping, front air dams, bumper strips for dressing

_____ Make sure vinyl top is clean and conditioned

_____ Check wipers for overspray

INTERIOR:

_____ Make sure carpet is vacuumed

_____ Check under seats

_____ Check ash trays

_____ Check rear shelf

_____ Check carpet for stains and cleanliness

_____ Check seats for stains and cleanliness

_____ Look at door panes for cleanliness

_____ Check dash board; ac vents, gauges, radio knobs, steering column, levers, crevices

_____ Check all chrome including seat belt ends, door handles, step plates

_____ Make sure all vinyl and leather has been evenly dressed

_____ Check headliner, visors, sail panels

_____ Check dome light area

_____ Check seat belts

_____ Make sure all pedals are cleaned

_____ Check lower dash for dressing

_____ Check all door jambs for cleanliness and tar removal

_____ Check consoles and glove compartment for cleanliness

_____ Check windows; below inspection stickers, inside rear brake lights, window tips

_____ Check rear view mirror

_____ Check vanity mirrors

_____ Make sure mats are in trunk

_____ Check to see that personal items are placed in clear plastic bag

_____ Check for plastic drivers seat cover

_____ Check for paper mats

_____ Be sure a hand-out flyer has been placed in car

——–

If a professional detailer will simply look past customer perception that “a detail is a detail” and educate them on the differences, then that professional will get the best of all worlds. By letting car washes introduce the idea and market to the consumers of the world, you will get free advertising. By car washes using the term detailing, even if it is out of context and even if they lower the once high standards in the minds of consumers, they still have opened the market ten fold. Now that this market is wide open and almost everyone has become in their own minds a detailing customer; it is up to the professional detailers to show them ‘a real detail’. It is up to us to expand our retail market mix, to expand that percentage of our business’ total sales.

Once the customer experiences the difference, they will see our point and know that an ‘express detail’ is merely a glorified wash with a hand wax, some extra dressings, and perhaps some carpet cleaning thrown in for good measure. It is hardly what professional detailers call a ‘complete and full detail’. Once your customer has become accustomed to a real detail and received a service which has exceeded their wildest expectations, that person will be a walking, talking one-person sales army for you and every other professional detailer in our industry. So press on! Let’s make believer out of our retail clientele one customer at a time.