Detailing is an art and should not be confused with valeting. Valeting is a much less involved process primarily comprising of usually washing a car’s paintwork, drying it and then adding a protective layer of some description, leaving it looking cleaner and somewhat shinier than prior to being valeted.
Detailing, on the other hand, is a much more involved (and detailed!) process of enhancing your vehicle, especially the paintwork by removing imperfections and adding a high degree of gloss and reflection that other preparation fails to achieve.
Detailing is designed to remove surface contaminants which may be bonded to the paint surface and also remove (as far as is possible and required) surface scratches, swirl marks, water marks, haze, cloudiness, oxidation and such like that are often present on and in the paint surface detracting from the overall look and finish of the vehicle. It will also add a level of gloss and reflection to the paint surface, before a high quality sealant and/or wax is applied to protect the finish for several months.
Detailing involves many stages as required, that can consist of the following, depending on the detailing service requested:
> Pressure Washing, with Snow Foam preparation to loosen and remove dirt prior to washing. A citrus pre-wash stage can also be included prior to snow foam as an additional stage.
> Washing the bodywork using a high quality shampoo and luxury microfibre or lambswool washmits and the two-bucket method (wash and rinse buckets), with grit guards. As part of the process the wash and rinse buckets used contain much more water than your ‘average’ often used builder’s black bucket. Additionally we use more than one washmit; one for the upper body and one for the lower bodywork to help prevent dirt transfer across the paintwork.
> An APC wash can be carried out to remove any old wax and sealant from paintwork if needed.
> Drying the bodywork with luxury micro fibre drying towels.
> Wheel removal, decontamination, claying, cleaning and protecting the surfaces, plus wheel arch cleaning and tyre dressing.
> Bodywork is inspected. Tar spots are removed from the bodywork using citrus tar remover. Iron fallout and contaminants are removed using a specialist cleaner. The bodywork is clayed to remove bonded on surface contaminants such as industrial fall out and to provide a smooth surface with which to work.
> Paintwork is inspected visually, thickness is measured and lighting used to determine the level of correction required. The amount of correction is discussed to suit each clients requirements.
> Multi Stage machine polishing using rotary and dual action polishers is undertaken to achieve the desired level of paint correction, gloss and reflection, using a selection of polishes, paint cleansers and ultra fine glazes and oxidation removers.
> Once machined polished, a high quality synthetic sealant is applied to the paint finish to enhance and protect the finish. In many cases two coats of sealant are used. A liquid polymer sealant followed by a synthetic paste sealant.
> An additional final wax coat may be used.
> Glass areas are cleaned and sealed/protected.
> Door shuts are cleaned and protected.
> Exterior trim dressed.
> Interior trim is cleaned and protected.
> Leather trim is cleaned and protected.
> Interior carpets vacuumed and cleaned as necessary. Wet-vacuuming can be carried out if required.
Our bespoke services makes use of as many of these processes as required to achieve the desired results, car by car.
How long does it take to detail a vehicle?
Depending on the condition of the paintwork and the amount of work required to achieve the required results, exterior detailing alone will take between half a day to two full days. A major detail including full paint correction can often take 3 or more days.