During the course of a car's lifetime, it is almost inevitable that the surface coating will be marred by scratches and swirls. This sort of damage can be caused by drive-through car washes - and the use of sub-standard buffers, as well as by normal day-to-day wear and tear.
However, car detailing is not only focused on the exterior of the vehicle. The interior is also treated to increase both attractiveness and longevity. Firstly pet hair is removed and water stains on fabric seats are treated. Leather upholstery is treated with a variety of conditioners to increase suppleness and protect from further damage. Carpets will be treated with a variety of solvents such as degreasers. Other artificial surfaces (such as the dash and interior door surfaces)will also be treated with products that will prevent fading and cracking.
The standard approach is to use a clay bar for this task. This will restore the lustre and smoothness of the clear coat. If left untreated these contaminants can damage the clear coat that covers the base paint of the car. When this happens the paintwork itself can suffer extensive damage, reducing the value of the vehicle and adversely affecting its appearance. When this happens the costs of reapplying the paint can be exhorbitant.
For the average consumer, the second most valuable asset that they will own (after their home) is their car. It is an asset that can retain its value, especially given the vibrant used car market. A car is not only an asset that can provide a monetary return. It is often central to our lives, allowing access to both professional and leisure opportunities, for the owner and their families. Not only that - but it is often a unique expression of our personal style.
There are other speciliased solvents that may be used to restore the appearance of the vhicle. For instance, in areas where hard water is present washing the car, or even being exposed to lawn sprinklers can leave unsightly and potentially damaging mineral deposits on the surface coat. this will require a specially developed low pH solvent to remove in order to eliminate further damage to the coatng.
However, in order for that asset to provide a superior return on investment, it needs to be maintained. For many people that maintenance will include ensuring that the car is mechanically sound and is serviced at regular intervals - and is kept clean (both inside and out) in order to be both attractive and efficient. For many this will involve making use of the services of a professional car cleaning service - the question is whether or not it is possible to take that process to the next level?
At the top end of the scale as far as long-lasting protection is concerned are the ceramic coatings. This thick layer is designed to wear down over time, while still protecting the clear coat beneath. Ceramic coatings can last up to two years. Many of these types of coatings will also protect the paintwork from fading due to the effects of UV rays and environmental dangers such as acid rain, which is becoming an increasing problem in urban areas.