Regular vacuuming and dusting of your car’s interior is the best way to keep it looking good. Regular interior maintenance is EASY maintenance. However, surface cleaning alone is not enough. Two to three times a year you will need to detail the upholstery to keep it looking its best. Since I use car care products from Detailcentral.com.au it never disappoints me.

Warning: Before using any product on your car’s fabric upholstery, carpet, leather or vinyl, test for color fading by cleaning a small, inconspicuous area. Do not use the product if it adversely changes your fabric’s color or texture.

The interior of this BMW has just been perfectly detailed. Notice how the leather has a nice, even matte finish. Professional detailers don’t leave a car’s interior looking wet and slick. The interior should look like it just arrived from the factory.

PROPER INTERIOR DETAILING

With the variety of materials used inside the modern automotive interior, knowing what to detail and how to do it is not always a straightforward matter. This section is divided into specific materials and areas of interior detailing. Read the areas that apply to your vehicle.

CAR VACUUMING

There’s no special science to car vacuuming. You need a good vacuum, a few attachments, and ten to fifteen minutes to get in there and get the job done.

A special car vacuum, such as this Vac ‘N Blo Portable Vacuum from Metropolitan Vacuum has all of the right attachments for car detailing. This car vacuum is under 18″ long and only 7″ in diameter. It comes with a 12′ power cord, a shoulder strap, a 6’ flexible hose, two 20″ extensions, a blower nozzle, pik-all nozzle, dust brush, crevice tool, inflator adapter and a 4-piece microcleaning tool kit.

The two most important attachments are the crevice attachment and the dust brush attachment. Make sure your crevice attachment is plastic, not metal. A metal attachment or a plastic attachment that’s in poor condition may scratch or otherwise damage leather or vinyl upholstery.

Use the crevice tool to reach between and under seats, into tight seams, nooks and crannies, and around seat beads. Vigorous movement on the carpet helps to bring up sand and grit.

Use the round dust brush attachment to vacuum the console, dash and vents. You can assist with the dusting by using an interior detailing brush ahead of the vacuum to get deep into vents and cracks.

Here Are The Steps For Proper Vacuuming:

Start your vacuuming job by pulling out the floor mats. Shake out the mats to remove any loose dirt. Use a 4″ upholstery attachment or the bare hose end to vigorously vacuum the mats. The more you’re able to agitate the carpet, the cleaner you’ll get it.

Work on the rear upholstery and carpet. Push the front seats all the way forward. Use the crevice tool to vacuum the cracks of the seats, and between the seats and carpeted areas. If the seat upholstery is fabric, switch to the 4″ upholstery attachment and vacuum the rear seat and the deck under the rear window. Vacuum the rear carpet. Use the crevice tool to vacuum around the seat tracks and under the front seats. Use the round dust brush attachment to vacuum the door panels.

Push the front seats all the way back to work on the front upholstery. Use the crevice tool to vacuum the cracks of the seats, between the seats and carpeted areas, and around the gas and brake pedals. Now switch to the 4″ upholstery attachment to vacuum the carpet in the foot wells and the seats (if the seats are fabric). Use the Auto Vent Brush to vacuum the console, vents and door panels.

Tip: When vacuuming carpet, use the palm of your free hand to beat the carpet just in front of your vacuum hose or tool. As you beat the carpet, dirt that is lodged deep into the carpet will come loose for vacuuming.

CLEANING AND TREATING YOUR DASHBOARD & CONSOLE

We look at the dashboard and console more than any other area of our car’s interior. It makes sense, therefore, that we should give it some special attention. The dash and the deck under the rear window also take the brunt of damage from sun exposure. In order to keep your dash from cracking and fading, regular treatment is necessary.

Caring for the dash and console is really pretty easy. Simply wipe them down with a damp Blue SilverClean Interior Detailing Towel every time you wash your car, and treat them with a vinyl protectant once a month. To reduce the effects of the sun’s UV rays, use products like BLACKFIRE Interior Protectant, 303 Aerospace Protectant or Ultima Interior Guard Plus, which contain protective UV sunscreens. These protectants create a perfect satin finish.

The easiest way to treat the dash and console is to use a foam applicator pad. Spray your vinyl protectant directly on the applicator, not on the dash or console, and wipe it in thoroughly. This will prevent overspray on your glass and upholstery. Don’t forget to protect the steering wheel, turn signal levers and the shift boot. Allow the vinyl protectant to soak in for 3 to 5 minutes, and then buff the dash and console dry with a Blue SilverClean Interior Detailing Towels.

If you’re doing a complete interior detail, you should also dust and clean out the vents and grillwork. There are a variety of tools that work in vents and grilles. Use the Interior Concours Brush and compressed air. If you don’t have compressed air, you can use the blow cycle on your vacuum. For heavily soiled interior surfaces, use Optimum Power Clean All Purpose Cleaner before agitating with the Mat & Carpet Scrub Brush. If you have a Dual Action Polisher, you can use a Carpet & Upholstery Brushes for Dual Action Polishers.

If your vents are disgustingly dirty, use a cotton swab or foam swab to clean out the dirt. A good vinyl cleaner and protectant works well on a foam swab to clean and beautify vents and speaker grilles.

On consoles with a lot of nooks and crannies, it’s best to use a soft bristled brush followed by a towel to clean and protect. This same method works well around buttons and controls on the dash. Aerosol products like McKee’s 37 Trim Detailer also work well in detailing areas and spots where your towel and finger can’t reach.

CLEANING AND TREATING DOOR PANELS & JAMBS

Door panels are often made of several materials, including fabric, vinyl, carpet and leather. Vinyl can be scrubbed to remove shoe scuffs. General-purpose cleaners, like 303 Multi-Surface Cleaner, or interior vinyl and plastic cleaners, like CarPro Inside Leather & Interior Cleaner, or Ultima Interior Shampoo Gel easily remove black scuff marks from these areas.

Thoroughly clean around door handles, pulls and window cranks, using a soft detail brush and interior cleaner. Be sure to clean and dry the speaker grilles and the wells on armrests, too. If the door panels have storage pockets, use your sponge or wash mitt to clean in these areas, as they tend to collect a lot of dirt and crud. Next, use your sponge or wash mitt and interior cleaner to clean all the way around the door frame and the doorsill. When you’re finished, dry the door completely with a clean drying towel.

If your door panel is leather or vinyl, be sure to treat it with a leather or vinyl protectant. Fabric door panels can be treated with a fabric protectant, like 303 Fabric Guard, to reduce staining and fading. Even if lightly soiled, it’s always a good idea to use an interior cleaner like Kenotek Interior Cleaner first, this way the panels are prepped for a protective coating. Keep in mind, you can use leather cleaners on vinyl, but I would not use a vinyl specific cleaner on leather. Combo products like Pinnacle Leather &Vinyl Cleaner are safe on both surfaces.

DETAILING VINYL AND PLASTIC PARTS

Vinyl and plastic are the most durable interior materials, but they do need frequent cleaning. Unlike cloth, the surfaces of vinyl and plastic generate static, which tends to attract dust. As a result, vinyl and plastic become grimy. The good news is, vinyl and plastic are the easiest surfaces to clean.

DO NOT use regular household soap and water on your vinyl and plastic surfaces. Detergent will permanently remove the sheen from vinyl and plastic. Choose a cleaner made specifically for interior surfaces. One of my personal favorite is Britemax Interior Cleaner Multi-Surface Cleaner, which is a quick spray-and-wipe solution that does not require rinsing. It’s also safe on all interior surfaces. For dirtier panels, some agitation may be required to loosen grime.

Follow these easy steps for the perfect vinyl interior:

  • Spray vinyl, plastic and imitation leather surfaces with Britemax Interior Cleaner Multi-Surface Cleaner or your favorite cleaner.
  • Work the cleaning solution into seams, edges and seat backs with a sponge or cleaning cloth. If you have stubborn dirt, use an upholstery scrub brush. If necessary, use an soft bristle brush to get into the small crevices.
  • If your cleaner requires rinsing, wash the vinyl and plastic thoroughly with fresh water and a clean microfiber detailing towel.
  • Dry the upholstery with a clean, dry Griots Garage PFM Terry Weave Drying Towel.
  • Allow the vinyl and plastic to dry, and then apply your favorite vinyl dressing to restore protection and sheen. Forum member favorites include BLACKFIRE Interior Protectant and Wolfgang Vinyl & Rubber Protectant.

A quick word about vinyl dressings: they’re not all the same. Choose a dressing that gives you the look you want (flat to shiny). Wolfgang Cockpit Trim Sealant creates a matte finish, whereas McKee’s 37 Interior Surface Protectant creates an attractive satin finish. Ultima Interior Guard Plus has the unique characteristic of taking on the original surface finish. So, when applied to a matte finish, Ultima Interior Guard Plus looks flat and applied to a glossy finish, like wood trim, Ultima Interior Guard Plus takes on a high gloss finish. Another thing to consider is protection from the sun. All of the products mentioned above offer great UV light protection.

CLEANING CARPETS AND FLOOR MATS

Most automotive carpets are very durable and will withstand repeated shampooing without signs of damage or wear. Carpet cleaning is not fast or easy. You should expect to spend 2 to 3 hours shampooing the front and rear carpet and mats in a sedan or SUV, a little less time for a truck or two-seater.

Before shampooing, the carpet and floor mats must be thoroughly vacuumed. To do a complete job, it may be necessary to remove the front seats, which requires the correct size Allen or socket wrench.

Follow these easy steps:

  • Spray spots and heavily soiled areas with a good spot remover. I recommend a product like Wolfgang Spot Eliminator or Dakota
  • Fabric Foam Carpet & Upholstery Cleaner.
  • Fill a bucket with 2 gallons of warm water.
  • Lightly spray a section of carpet (no more than 2 square feet at a time) with your carpet and upholstery cleaner. Use an upholstery brush or a sponge in a circular motion to agitate the upholstery. Dip your brush in water to keep it wet, but apply as little water as possible.
  • Wipe away the suds with a sponge or a damp detailing towel.
  • Empty your bucket of soapy water and refill with clean, warm water.
  • Rinse your carpet with clean water by wiping with a damp terry cloth towel. Rinse the soap from your towel often and wring it out. Use as little water as possible, but rinse thoroughly.
  • Vacuum your carpet to extract the remaining rinse water.
  • If you’re not working on a warm, sunny day, use a hair dryer to complete the drying process. Be careful not to scorch the carpet by holding the dryer too close.
  • Allow the carpet to dry overnight before using.

To keep your carpet and floor mats looking great, use a fabric protectant like 303 High Tech Fabric Guard. It’s really cheap insurance against spills and stains.

CAR INTERIOR DETAILING SUMMARY

Most of us spend 8 to 15 hours a week inside our cars, so it makes sense that we should keep them neat and tidy. Yet finding the time to detail the inside of the car is difficult with our busy schedules. If you take just five minutes each time you wash your car to remove the trash, shake out the mats, and wipe down the dash, console and seats, you can stay on top of this detailing chore. Then when it comes time for a full interior detail, the task will not seem quite so daunting. Hook us with a call if you have any problem with your car products.

Taking care or your car’s appearance doesn’t qualify as vanity; instead, it’s smart vehicle ownership. You can hire a professional auto detailer to care for your car for between $100 and $500 – or you can swipe their secrets, do it yourself and save some dough. If you are going to hire a detailer, ask a lot of questions, ask for references and to see sample work, and agree to a price in writing before the detailing work begins. Detailcentral.com.au is the leader in professional car products and auto detailing supplies.

With the free flow of information on the internet, do-it-yourselfers have access to all of the tools and tricks of the trade available to the pros. If you choose to detail your own ride, be prepared to spend a little bit of money gathering the proper tools and materials. You may already have most of the right stuff handy in your garage; if you must gather everything from scratch, you might spend from $30 to $100 or more, depending on how extensive you want your detail job to be.

The most important material that you’ll need is already in your tool kit. For many experts in the field, the secret ingredient is hard work and elbow grease. “Good detailing is 90% application and 10% product,” one detail professional said. “The best detailer can get decent results with decent products, but the worst detailer can’t get great results even with great products.”

There are few automotive maintenance chores that are more satisfying, accessible to all skill levels and truly beneficial for your car than a good detail job. We’ve collected the top secrets that will help you to get professional results, make your detailing more fun, more successful and easier.

Secret #1: Use Two Buckets to Wash
Detailers know that the two-bucket method is the best way to get your exterior clean. Use one bucket to hold your clean suds, and another bucket to hold clean water. Before you dip your cleaning mitt into the clean suds, rinse it off in the clean water bucket and wring it dry. Then, you’re always putting a clean mitt into the clean suds that will go on your car. If you only use one bucket, you’re just moving dirt off of your car, into your suds and back onto your car. Some pros have started using the Grit Guard insert, a $9.99 tray that helps sediment settle to the bottom of your wash bucket, instead of getting stirred up in the water and recollected on your wash mitt.

Secret #2: Join the Microfiber Revolution
We’re living the microfiber revolution. Pro detailers use color-coded, task-specific microfiber cloths and towels for greater efficiency, lower friction and scratching and easier washing, rinsing and drying. Mike Pennington, director of training and consumer relations for wax and polish supplier Meguiars, emphasizes that it’s important to wash your microfiber as a separate load, not mixed in with the regular laundry and rags. Microfiber will trap the lint from cotton towels, defeating the purpose of the wash. Use very little detergent and skip the fabric softener, which will coat the fibers and inhibit microfiber’s qualities. Double up on the rinse cycle, and your microfiber will perform at its best.

Also, remove any labels and stitching before you use your towels to avoid scratching. And remember, you get what you pay for – those cheapo packs of microfiber from the warehouse store are not nearly as good as the ones you can find at online specialty stores.

Secret #3: Detail Your Trim First
This tip comes from Jim Dvorak, a product specialist at Mothers Polish. He suggests using a trim protectant/restorer like Mothers’ Back to Black before waxing your paint. Wash and dry your vehicle, then apply the trim protectant. The product will repel polish and wax that might otherwise stain your trim. Some pro detailers use masking tape to protect the trim during waxing – this application can help save time and cleanup.

Secret #4: Use a Buffer to Apply Product, a Towel to Remove
Consumers sometimes get confused by the name of the tool, and use a power buffer to remove wax or polish from the painted surfaces of their cars. A buffer can leave erratic swirl marks in your clear coat and paint if used to remove product; that’s not what it’s for. Use the buffer to apply wax, and then use a soft, dry cloth to remove it. You’ll avoid burning the paint or damaging the clear coat, and you’ll wind up with a thin, even coat of wax.

Secret #5: Get a Dual Action Polisher
For just a little bit more than you’d spend on a good direct drive polisher and an orbital polisher, you can get the perfect blend of both tools with a dual action polisher like those manufactured by Flex. Based in Stuttgart, Germany, Flex has been making tools since 1922 and building dedicated auto finish polishers since 1988. Meguiars’ Dual Action Polisher is a little more consumer friendly, and less expensive than the Flex products. It doesn’t have the forced rotation, which keeps the tool moving even under a heavy load. Forced rotation is a great feature for an expert who knows how to use it; in inexperienced hands, however, it can do more harm than good.

Secret #6: Use a Clay Bar System
This secret may be out of the bag already, but it’s such a good one that it bears repeating. There’s no better way to remove surface contaminants from paint than with a good clay bar system. Pros have been using clay for years, and consumer versions have been on the market for at least a decade. A good clay bar system includes a spray lubricant, usually a detailing spray, an 80 – 100 gram clay bar, and a towel. According to Mike Pennington from Meguiars, after washing and drying your car you rub the clay bar on the paint to remove “bonded environmental contaminants” without removing paint thickness. The smoother paint surface takes polishing and wax better, and extends the life of subsequent treatments.

Secret #7: Use a Plastic Grocery Bag to Check the Paint Surface
Hers’s another tip from Jim Dvorak at Mothers. Once you have cleaned your paint’s surface of contaminants with a clay bar system or other cleaner, it’s important to make sure that you’ve really removed all the dirt before you seal the surface with wax. Put your hand in an ordinary thin plastic grocery bag, and run it over the surface of the paint. The plastic bag will amplify any bumps and imperfections – you can go back and detail again. Keep rechecking until the surface is totally smooth, then polish (if necessary) and apply protective wax.

Secret #8: Dry Your Glass in Two Directions
Here’s a great tip from Meguiars’ Pennington: Dry your glass in two directions. Get into the habit of doing your final wipe of interior glass in a horizontal direction, and the final wipe on the exterior in a vertical direction. Then, when you find the inevitable streak, you’ll instantly know whether it’s on the inside (horizontal) or the outside (vertical) of the glass. You’ll get perfectly clear glass without jumping in and out of the vehicle chasing that streak.

Secret #9: Brush It First
Pennington says that when it comes to cleaning interiors, mechanical agitation is always better than chemical intervention. That means that your first line of attack is a good brush. For instance, before vacuuming your carpeting, de-mat the fibers by using a stiff nylon brush. Then, when you vacuum, the dirt will be free in the carpet, and will be much easier to extract. The same goes for door panels, though you’ll want to use a gentler brush. If more aggressive cleaning is necessary, start gently, use a gentle solution of fabric cleaner, and dry with a soft cotton cloth.

Secret #10: Make Static Electricity Your Friend
To remove stubborn pet hair from your cars carpets, put on a pair of latex gloves (readily available in boxes of 100 from any home improvement store) and then rub your hand over the carpet. The static electricity caused by the latex glove will help bring the pet hair up to the surface of the carpet for easy removal by hand or vacuum.

Secret #11: Leave the Headliner Alone
According to Pennington, there’s one part of the car that detailers avoid if at all possible: the headliner. Even a little bit of agitation can cause the glue in a headliner to fail, causing far more more problems than it is worth. Keep your ministrations to a minimum when it comes to cleaning, brushing and tending to the headliner fabric. If you positively must clean your headliner, use very little moisture, and never allow it to soak through the outer fabric.

Auto detailing can be a great way to bond with your car, and to make your automotive investment go farther, last longer and look better. Hopefully these Top Secrets of the Auto Detailers will help you and your ride along the way. Find out here the secrets of auto detailers.

I recently purchased an Acura TL and want to know how to care for the leather seats. – Kan

There’s no need to hide from leather interiors – while some experts recommend leather cleaners and conditioners, Honda says your seats just need dusting, vacuuming and the occasional wipe down. Another option for leather protector is to take a damp cloth, wipe it across moisturizing soap and lather the leather.

“The simplest way to prolong the life of your leather interior is to vacuum it regularly,” Honda Canada spokesperson Chris Wood says. “Chances are, if it can’t be solved with a vacuum, a soft cloth that’s been slightly dampened with water will do the trick. Just be sure to remove any remaining moisture by buffing the area with a dry cloth.”

It sounds simple, especially since there are lots of leather care products on the market. Wood says they don’t recommend any products in particular.

“Some are cleaners while others are conditioners. Choose the wrong one and you may regret it,” Wood says. “Our recommendation is to consult the owner’s manual and follow the instructions.”

Those instructions say to clean the leather with a soft cloth dampened with a 90 per cent water and a 10 per cent “neutral wool detergent solution,” then buff with a clean dry cloth.

Again, Honda won’t specify a specific brand of pH neutral or near-neutral detergent, but products for wool and delicates fit the bill.

“It’s important to avoid detergents that use any kind of dye or bleach and anything that can be harsh, abrasive, or cause the leather to dry out and shrink,” the auto maker says.

The Good Housekeeping Research Institute agrees that leather seats don’t need much maintenance, but preventing tears and stains is crucial.

“There’s really not much to do to take care of a leather interior,” says the Institute’s Carolyn Forte. “Obviously, you want to keep sharp or rough objects away from it to prevent rips, tears, and scrapes, but that’s [the case] with fabric, too.”

Aside from keeping keys, cell phones and zippers off leather surfaces, Forte says drivers should use a leather cleaner and conditioner for cleaning.

“Stains can be tougher to remove on leather than on fabric, so be sure to keep pens away and blot spills as soon as they happen,” she says.

Good Housekeeping doesn’t recommend any particular leather product, though, and neither does Consumer Reports.

In a March 2012 article on detailing car interiors, Consumer Reports says drivers should gently clean vehicle leather with “leather cleaner, saddle soap, or another mild leather soap on a damp cloth.” Be sure to remove all soap and moisture – especially on seams and folds.

Wood says Honda recommends checking with your dealer before getting your leather surfaces professionally cleaned.

“Without knowing how a professional cleaner gets the job done, it’s hard to predict how it will affect the surface or whether it will void the warranty,” Wood says.

The burning sun and lashing rain take a toll on your car. Paint starts to fade, and the accumulation of dirt and scratches ages the vehicle that’s why you need to apply a new car paint protection.

Painting the bodywork is an opportunity to rejuvenate its original look or even to try out a new look with a different color. However, spray-painting any vehicle is a long process that involves special tools and skills, so it’s a job best left to a professional.

Before you start contacting local auto shops for quotes, it’s a good to ask yourself: How much does it cost to paint a car?

Professional painting or DIY?

While it’s possible to paint your own vehicle, it involves patience, skill and a range of paints and tools that you may need to purchase specifically for the job. Furthermore, the end result may not be of a particularly high-quality, making do-it-yourself paint jobs more suitable for older vehicles or all-terrain vehicles that frequently pick up knocks and scratches.

For people looking to restore a family vehicle or collector’s car to its original condition, it’s usually a better idea to employ the services of an auto repair shop where professionals apply up to 24 even coats of paint for a high-gloss, durable finish.

Professional auto painting costs

Many body shops offer several levels of service to cater to customers with different budgets and requirements:

  • Basic: The most inexpensive paint job involves as few coats as possible, using synthetic enamel paint. For the basic job, the painters are unlikely to paint areas that are not normally visible, such as the inside of the hood. Costs range from $300 to $900.
  • Standard: The cost of a standard paint job usually includes sanding the body and removing rust before painting to get an attractive finish. Costs range from $1,000 to $3,500.
  • Showroom quality: This process involves sanding the bodywork down to bare metal, removing all of the rust and dents, and then applying up to 24 coats of high quality paint. The project may take up to a month, and the costs may be as high as $20,000 in some cases.

DIY auto painting costs

For older vehicles, the cost of a professional paint job may be excessive. In these cases, you may wish to try painting the vehicle yourself. The necessary materials are widely available from hardware and automotive stores for as little as $75. Your only other costs are in time and effort.

The required materials and tools include:

  • Gloss paint
  • Primer
  • Foam brushes
  • Paint trays
  • Masking tape
  • Sandpaper
  • Mineral spirits for cleaning

One of the biggest concerns with a DIY project is finding a location to paint the vehicle. Many body shops have climate-controlled booths, designed to limit the amount of dust and dirt that might come into contact with the paint and ruin the finish.

For a DIY project, the best option is to paint the vehicle in a clean, well-ventilated garage.

Quality vs. price

Everybody wants a cost-effective service, so when you are contacting body shops to get quotes for your auto-painting project, it’s tempting to go for the lowest price offer.

However, you get what you pay for. Lowball quotations may be for a low-quality paint job, using inferior materials. Rather than removing trim, the painters may simply mask it off; and they may not paint areas that aren’t visible. Furthermore, the quotation may not include certain services that the auto painters charge as an additional rate.

Before committing to a service, ask the painters what their price covers. Check if sanding and preparing the bodywork is part of the cost, and look at previous examples of their work to make sure you are happy with the quality.

Conclusion

When deciding to get your vehicle repainted, always be sure to figure out how much it costs to paint a car.

So, after finding out the costs, consider your budget carefully. If you try to get the job done as inexpensively as possible, the work may not be to a high standard, leaving you displeased with the result. Consider paying for your paint job with a credit card that earns you rewards or cash back.

Conversely, if you look at the most expensive paint jobs, you may decide it’s better to trade in your car for a new model. You also may wish to consider alternatives, such as vinyl wraps which start at around $1,500. Learn more about the alternative cost for paint protection.

Ever wonder why leather is always in a higher grade vehicle, or a higher trim? Leather is awesome when its fresh and soft, it beats cloth in almost all scenarios. Whether your vehicle has synthetic vinyl leather or real leather, over time it will suffer abuse much like most other materials. Don’t waste you time trying to use a product which cause your car interior to degrade, why try our leather care products.

Dirt, grime, grease, body sweat, dust and among other things get trapped in the pores and crevices of leather. While cleaning it out can be labor intensive and in most cases require some finesse, it’s not impossible. When using the right leather cleaners created “specifically” for leather, you’ll be able to bring it back to new with a lot less effort.

From there, it’s your job to keep it protected and soft (much like your hair). This is where a good quality conditioner comes into play. Right below we put together a list of the 6 best leather conditioners and cleaners to use on both automotive applications, furniture, and a host of others.

Here’s 6 Best Conditioners and Cleaners For Leather (and other uses)

6. Meguiar’s Gold Class Rich Leather Cleaner and Conditioner

You can never go wrong with Meguiar’s products. Especially when it comes down to their Leather Cleaner and Conditioner. Designed for casual use and mostly light to medium duty jobs, this spray bottle is created to be both a dirt fighting cleaner and also a moisturizer.

There’s no need to buy separate products to get both steps of the cleaning process done. As you probably know, clean leather is important to keep clean for visual factors and resale factors. The UV coating embedded allow you to get some protection from the all-mighty SUN’s harmful rays.

Be results can be found when light to medium pressure is applied when scrubbing. One bottle should last you through at least 1 full leather cleaning endeavor of your vehicle.

5. Chemical Guys Leather Conditioner and Cleaner

Moving down to our #5 listing for the best leather cleaners and best leather conditioner products, its Chemical Guys Leather Cleaner and Conditioner Care Kit. If you aren’t familiar with this brand, they pretty much are a premium upgrade from ordinary off the shelf products. Their presence on YouTube and in the automotive community sets them apart in quite a good way.

Their leather cleaner is created for use in cheap and fine leather. Combined with the separate bottle for conditioning your leather, you can bring back the “new” feeling it’s supposed to have. Dirt and oils that can often get trapped inside leather pores will have a much harder time once conditioner has been applied.

According to them, their pH balanced cleaners are efficient and help to preserve strength, durability, and appearance. Each bottle comes as 16oz.

4. Lexol Leather Cleaner and Conditioner Kit

If you know of any leather cleaners, you’ve probably heard of Lexol as a brand. Well, they make a kit that is essentially everything you’d need to clean your leather, condition it, and protect it. Coming in 3 separate bottles to complete each task, it’s very simple to start and finish the leather cleaning process (the hard part is just scrubbing).

The first product is the cleaner, designed to be sprayed on and brushed in with a soft bristle brush. Once you have removed stains and old gunk from your leather, its time to spray-on conditioner. This product will ensure your leather does not dry up after the cleaning phase.

Now to mention the 3rd item on in this leather cleaning kit, its the protectant. This isn’t to necessarily protect you from physical contact, but instead from UV rays and among other things (such as temperature).

3. Leather Honey Leather Cleaner

For leather care that is better than what you find in your local store, you’ll want to move towards products that are specifically created for leather of ALL kinds. Seriously, while the big detailing companies make products, they really worry about price and making sure everyone can afford them. This as a result, can compromise the overall potency.

Here are have the Leather Honey Leather Cleaner. First, thing we like about this product, is that its made 100% in the USA. This concentrated formula is often too strong to be used by itself, that’s why diluting it to certain ratios is required. With the 4 oz of this concentrated leather cleaner, you can make up to 32 oz of diluted cleaner.

Tackle vinyl and leather of all type, there’s no chance dirt, oil, stains and grime will stand a chance when brushed properly. This product is 100% non-toxic, and is perfect for automotive, furniture, handbags, shoes and jackets.

2. Leather Nova Conditioner and Cleaner

As we move towards the best of the best, our #2 pick for leather cleaning products is Leather Nova’s Conditioner and Cleaner. This 18oz bottle of goodness is created for all types of leather, ranging from furniture, cars, jackets, handbags, shoes, sofas, couches, wallets, and much more.

This way this product works is simple, you first need to apply this product to the leather, brush appropriately until foam builds up, wipe away, and repeat the process. Until you begin to notice a “new” like leather look and feel. While you were doing that, you were also conditioning your leather for softness and further durability.

With the pH balance, you can use it on fine leather that you’d find in BMW’s, Mercedes, Audi’s and some other higher end vehicles.

1. Chamberlain’s Leather Milk Conditioner and Cleaner

The leather cleaner for automobiles we found, is Chamberlain’s Leather Milk Leather Cleaner and Conditioner. This is exactly what you will use for small to heavy duty cleaning on literally all types of leather’s (from super expensive to cheap).

What we love about this product, is the natural ingredients + a cleaning agent which allows you to erase grime and oils. By applying a light coating of this product, softly rubbing it in, and using a soft bristle brush to get some foam going, you’ll help to lift hard embedded dirt. The conditioner will soften up the leather and give it fresher look.

This product comes in a 8oz bottle, but its not concentrated. Use liberally to get the most out. Get most out of our products to maintain your car leather.

Deciding between car paint protection colors can be a daunting task for the casual car or bike owner trying to choose that perfect color for their ride. There are literally more than 60,000 auto paint colors available on the market and at some point each of those colors was considered to be an “in” color. It’s easy enough to recognize a color you like. In fact, it’s often easy to recognize LOTS of colors you like. Narrowing down the pool of colors to make a final choice can be challenging. Adding to considerations are types of paint colors that you may have heard about from friends, and colleagues. While we may not be a able to review thousands of colors for you, we can share our knowledge on the various classes of colors and give some features of each and things to consider which might make your selection process easier and more effective. We’ve also included images of our popular colors by segment which can be clicked on to link you to those color options in our store where you can see pricing or complete your order. We have many more colors to choose from than those listed below so don’t hesitate to hop over the online store and cruise through all the selections.

Metallic Colors

Metallic car paint colors are colors which have a sparkle to them originating from a finely ground metallic aluminum pigment. This metallic pigment gives paints a sparkle with numerous variations in sparkle size and and brightness based on the type of metallic pigment used. Combining these metallic pigments with a wide range of transparent pigments yields thousands of distinctly different car paint colors. From an application standpoint metallic paints can range from very easy to apply to more challenging depending on the color chosen. As a general rule, lighter colored metallic paints are more difficult to apply evenly than darker ones. Relatively speaking durability of metallic paints is good to excellent depending on the system used and color. Metallic paints are often confused with metal flake paint which is a very different type of sparkling paint color which will be discussed later in more detail. To learn more about metallic paints visit our metallic paints page over here. To see these in person purchase a hand sprayed chart in the color selectors area in the online store.

Pearl Car Paint Colors

Pearl Paint Colors with colored shimmers are made by combining special pigments called pearlescent pigments with traditional transparent pigments. Unlike metallic colors whose sparkle is based on a silver aluminum platelet, pearls are available in a wide range of sparkle colors and sizes. As such, pearl colors are said to have more “color depth” than the average car paint color. Pearl colors can be 2 stage where a pearl base color is applied then cleared or a 3 stage system where a solid base color is applied, then a pearl midcoat, and a protective clearcoat. Lighter colored pearl car paint colors tend to be more transparent than lighter colored metallic shades and as such many pearl car colors require a uniform color underneath since the lighter pearl color is likely not to hide color differences beneath. In fact many light colored pearl colors such as white pearls require a specific base color underneath making them a true 3 stage color. On the contrast, darker and medium shades are well suited for 2 stage applications and often will cover or hide the surface beneath well. From an application stand point 2 stage pearls are comparable to their metallic counterparts in ease of application but 3 stage pearls are often more challenging due to the transparent nature of the pearl midcoat. The durability of pearl finishes is generally comparable to that of metallics colors. To learn more about pearl colors visit our pearl colors page in the colors menu above.

Solid Colors

Solid car paint colors are those which do not contain a sparkling agent such as a pearl or metallic. Black and white are the most popular examples of solid colors but there are literally thousands of other identifiable shades. Solid colors are generally easier to apply than pearls or metallics since there are no sparkling agents to worry about orienting evenly. Many of hte most popular classic colors of all time fit into the solid color category. Solid colors are generally better than average in terms of durability when used in a quality base clear system.

Candy Colors

Candy colors have unmatched “depth of color”. These car paint colors offer unique looks due to a unique process to make a true candy effect. Candy colors are made in a 3 step process where a sparkling basecoat is used and then a transparent colored midcoat, the candy coat, is applied and finally protected with a high gloss urethane clear. This process creates a sparkling color where the sparkle appears to be immersed in the color. Candy colors are often referred to as “wet” due to the deep wet shine often obtained. A couple of draw backs to true candy paints are that they are more difficult to apply and the durability can be substantially less than those of solid, pearl, or metallic finishes.

Color Changing “Chameleon” Colors

Color changing paints have the ability to display radically different colors depending on how or where they are viewed. The most common type of color changing paints are “chameleon paints” that change color based on changes in the viewing angle. Often 3-5 distinctly different colors can be viewed on one object from one paint. These colors offer maximum viewing impact for those that want a ride that really stands out. The biggest drawback to this type finish is they are among the most difficult to apply evenly. Durability with chameleon paints are fair to good compared to conventional automotive finishes.

Custom Colors vs Factory Colors

Let us first break down car paint colors down into two general categories; custom paints and factory paints. Factory paints or Original Equipment Manufacture (OEM) colors are those in which are used in the production of commercial vehicles being manufactured in mass quantities. Essentially, these are the paints that are being applied to assembly produced vehicles by brands such as Ford, GM, Chrysler etc. Custom car paints are basically those that are not factory paints. Generally speaking custom paints are made to be unique when compared to factory paints of the era. There is a strong market of car and bike owners looking for colors the stand out and custom paints fill that need. Custom car paints range from “loud and proud” to subtle and sleek to fit a wide range of tastes. While custom paints may not be as easily attainable as factory paints, they are readily available and worth the effort if you are looking for a unique finish. Whether custom paints or factory paints there are numerous categories of paints as discussed above. Read more on how to apply these colors of paint on your car.

Nothing is more frustrating than the feeling you get if your car breaks down on the highway.This kind of situation is dangerous and could end up costing you have to find a mechanic who is able to repair your car. How can you select the right mechanic is best? Use the following tips described to help you find the right mechanic. Our full car paint correction detail is the ultimate treatment of the exterior of your vehicle.

Ask a mechanic any questions about your car when bringing it in to their shop. Preventing automotive issues is a great way of saving money annually.

Ask mechanics if they have worked on the same make and model of vehicle before. If they have worked on the same type vehicle you have, you should feel better about their ability to solve your problem.

Wash your car often so you can prevent rust from becoming a problem. All cars will rust up eventually, but the process can be delayed considerably by washing off any chemicals or salt immediately. Use a decent wax for protecting paint jobs as much as possible.

Referrals can be helpful for finding a great auto mechanic. Ask the people you know for recommendations. You can gain information about price and value that way. People will let you what type of experience they had to deal with and whether the mechanic was honest or not.

Be wary of mechanics that try and make unnecessary repairs on your car. A good mechanic should let you know if they noticed parts that are starting to get worn down and will need to be replaced soon but they should not replace the part without getting your approval.Never give your car to someone who preforms unnecessary repairs.

Keep a spare tire and a jack in your trunk. They are usually included with most new vehicles.You would hate to be stuck out in the road and need to pay a lot for towing. It’s far more convenient and easier to do it by yourself.

Assemble a DIY auto repair tool kit to keep in the trunk of your trunk. Your tool kit should have equipment to change a tire. A good lug wrench and a jack are essential. You should have a few screwdrivers with various shapes as well as different wrenches like for this kit.

Most shops are on the up and up, but others may try to slip in little extras which quickly add up. Search for a reliable shops that specializes in repairing the make of vehicle you have. These places probably have a better equipped to understand and repair any problem your car repairs.

Pay attention to the condition of your wiper blades. You may need new blades if the ones you have are streaking or making noises and leaving streaks on the glass.

Doing repairs on your own can also be rather risky. Always get someone to be near you if there is an emergency were to happen. Buy only the highest quality tools that will not break easily. This holds true of the tools needed for changing tires. The jack has to hold the car up without any trouble while you buy needs to support your vehicle well. That’s why sometimes it’s best to get a good hydraulic floor jack that comes with approved jack stands.

Don’t allow auto mechanics to persuade you into getting your car’s engine flushed is normal maintenance. This is a costly service is very expensive and not something that is typically done during the course of normal maintenance.

It is quite common for customers to find out about additional issues when they pick up their vehicle from a repairer. They do this to make it look like you are getting a deal. Tell them that you’re going to have to talk to them later so that you have to think about it before accepting the deal.

It is possible that there was a recall issue if multiple people report the same problem.The manufacturer may even fix the problem at no cost to you.

Consistency is key in auto repair world. Stick with a trusted mechanic whom you have used before instead of going to multiple places for repairs. Different shops won’t have records of the previous work done on issues. They could charge different amounts that cause you more for the work done.

When going to get an auto repair quote, ensure he itemizes labor costs as well as cost of parts. This makes it easier when you need to compare quotes between two mechanics. The cost of parts should be similar, but the labor is where you will find the deal.

The first person you’ll have to get over when your car needs repairs is the mechanic. You do not want to work with a bad vibe. Watch for negative body language like lack of eye contact, not answering your questions, and ignore your questions.

When washing your vehicle, set mats outside and hose them a couple times. Dirt is something that can easily get inside their rubber surfaces and can eat through it after a while. Holes aren’t attractive and allow the dirt have a clear path to the carpet that’s under it.

Choose between getting your car fixed by a dealership or an independent repair shop. Garages are cheaper, but you may find that you get hired by someone who is dishonest.

This rule for older cars. Modern cars can often go from 5,000 miles or even every 10,000 miles.Follow what the manufacturer’s recommendations.

Once you’ve got a diagnosis, you should get online to compare prices and to look for parts. There are many websites you estimate of repairs. Compare this estimate with quotes that repair shops give you.

Take your mechanic for a drive before having him work on your car’s problem. This shows them a better idea of the problem that you face. This is a much clearer way to illustrate the problem instead of just telling them.

It can be tough to ferret out a really good car repair shop. But, it can be a lot less hassle when you have the right information to hand. Your experience will clearly be better when you know exactly what to ask and what you need to expect. Keep this advice in mind if you have issues later. Learn more about car repair so that next time when you are in trouble you know how to provide a solution.

You don’t want to just go with it if your car repairs. Read on and learn what you should do the next time your car needs repair. Dura-Seal G4 Ceramic paint protection products provides the most up to date paint protection technology for your new vehicle.

You might not need a mechanic to fix your car to the shop when there is an issue. There are a few things that can be fixed quite easily. If the job is not complicated, try it yourself.

Referrals will lead you to a trustworthy mechanic.Ask around for their recommendations. You can find out about the quality of service and value that way. People can tell you what kind of experience they had and if the person was honest or not.

Never leave any valuables in your car when dropping it off for repairs. Mechanics might have to empty the work and they aren’t responsible if an item is damaged or missing. You want to remove items from your trunk.

Although most repair shops can be trusted, you don’t want to pay too much. Try to find shops that are experts in servicing your particular type of car. These shops can better understand the best ones to use.

Think about using a mechanic who does repairs in his or her own garage. If they are experienced and skilled, and they will usually charge you less for labor. You may save a lot of the repair.

You don’t necessarily have to visit the dealer in order to get your auto repairs are needed. There are many great technicians in auto shops and at dealerships. Find someone who is certified and reliable.

There are a few different classifications that determine the quality of parts. New parts are made solely to a manufacturer’s factory. Refurbished or rebuilt parts ate those that have been restored to working condition. “Salvage” means that the parts have been used without being improved or repaired.

Don’t try to diagnose complex auto repair issues. What can seem like it’s simple to fix may be a lot harder, especially if your car is newer. Let repair shop diagnose your vehicle. Let them know what the problem is and the noises you hear, but let them be the ones to diagnose the issue.

Check that your mechanic has the necessary certifications handy. You want to see that he or she has credentials indicating that they have received approval from the NIAE. You can expect quality results from someone who has been approved by this organization.

Have you read your owner’s manual? You should review this manual all the way through at least once. Your manual has all that you should know about maintaining your vehicle and doing minor repairs yourself.

It is possible that there was a recall issue if multiple people report the same problem.The manufacturer may even fix the problem at no cost to you.

AAA is a good company to look into when you need auto repair issues. You can often find discounts on an annual AAA has many discount options in place.

Keep your vehicle repair and maintenance receipts in a file in your car. You can sort them however you like as long as you know what is where.This is important to have when it is time to sell your car.

If you wish to figure out what kinds of problems are happening to your vehicle, you can’t recognize if something is going wrong. You might want to sign up for a class on auto repair.This will enable you to better service your vehicle lasts longer.

Set an expense limit that you are willing to let the mechanic reach without specific authorization. Don’t let the shop to make whatever repairs as they want after your drop off your car. Set a specific amount that they don’t call you first.

Ask people you know to recommend a good mechanic to you. This is the best way to find a great method since your friend’s experience. This is better than randomly risking your business to a mechanic you know nothing about.

Do not use water in the compartment for windshield wiper reservoir. Water can clean your windshield, sure, you could damage it. Check the compartment often to refill it as needed. Do not put in water when the reservoir appears to be empty.

You can either trust a small garage or a dealership to get your car fixed. Independent garages may cost less, however it can be hard to find an honest one.

Seek second opinion prior to having any big repairs on your car.The mechanic may be offended or offer a special price to do repairs right away, but be suspicious of this.

Ask plenty of questions as you deem necessary when getting your vehicle repaired. Any decent company worth its salt will answer all of your questions.

Find a mechanic who is already familiar with your cars similar to yours. Ask them about their experience; find out if they have previously worked on your particular make and model of vehicle.

Once you figure out what is wrong with your car, go online and search for spare parts and comparison shop. There are many website that will give you can obtain an estimate of what the reapirs can cost you. Compare these estimates with your repair quote.

Take your mechanic out for a drive to show him work on your car. This will help your mechanic see first hand what problems you face. This is a much clearer way to view the problem instead of just telling them.

Your engine’s belts and they are extremely important to your car. A failing belt that fails can cause major damage to the engine. You probably need new belts if your car screeches when it starts up.

By now you should have a better idea of how to handle auto repairs. The information in this piece should give you the confidence you need to tackle auto repair questions. Remember the tips you just read and do more research on the issues you run into to find out whether or not you can fix them yourself.

The right vans are key to an up-and-coming heating company’s most important promise: reliability. Hereford Heating’s Rob Nash test drives the new T6 Transporter

For 23 years Rob Nash has been keeping the heating and plumbing systems of homes and businesses around Hereford working. His company’s engineers cover every type of heating installation including gas, oil, LPG and solar. Your car, truck, van or your entire fleet can be advertising for you at all hours of the day and night by converting into vehicle signage Sydney.

Providing environment-friendly energy is part of Hereford Heating’s offering, including solar-powered hot water and ground-source heat pumps.

What lies behind the success of Hereford Heating is reliability, increasingly seen as a USP when it comes to plumbers. “We have put a lot of time and effort into ensuring we give a reliable service and that we are first class in every avenue,” says managing director Rob.

That is critical for his client base. “We work with a wide range of clients: domestic customers, businesses, agents, landlords and local authorities,” says Rob, who has been plumbing all his adult life.

The company offers a full range of plumbing and heating work, from a boiler service at £65 to a complete installation. The company even took part in the BBC TV show DIY SOS when it came to Hereford in 2014. The programme enlists friends, family and local trades to help transform a home.

To deliver its maintenance, service and installation to customers across the county, Rob and his team of 13 run a fleet of seven Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles (VWCW) vans. The gas installers use the workhorse Transporter T5 while the engineers drive the more nimble VW Caddys. The vans are bought outright and changed every three years.

“I have always used VW – I’ve been driving them since I was 17,” says Rob, who created Hereford Heating in 2000 after a spell working as a sole trader. “I’ve driven many different types and sizes of VW and they always live up to my expectation.”

So, as a long-standing user of VWCW vans for his business, Rob was asked to test-drive a new t6 Transporter. “It’s nice to drive and the handling is only what I expected from VW,” he says. “It’s a smooth drive.

“I like the rear parking sensors and the satnav has improved,” he says. There is also a heated front windscreen, a boon on frosty mornings. It’s as though someone has thought about a few things for the driver and the working person who is going to be sitting in the vehicle all day,” he adds.

That’s the key to Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles: they are designed for working. While the cab has comfort, the chassis and rear compartment are built to meet the needs of tradespeople and service providers.

The vans can be fitted to suit specific requirements and Rob installs a range of racking where valves, pipes and other components are stored. “You can spec the van however you want. The racking works well. We just move it whenever we buy a new van,” he says.

It is 65 years since the Transporters first appeared and the latest version, the T6, comes with a wide range of spec options but with an emphasis on safety and security.

“One thing I do like about VW is that they are always pushing forward with new technology.” The T6, for example, comes with a touchscreen radio with Bluetooth connectivity.

Hereford Heating aims to portray a professional quality image. All the engineers carry ID, wear corporate uniform and are CRB-checked. Using liveried VWCW vans forms a major part of that strategy.

“Brand is important to us and VW helps us portray the right image of quality and reliability,” says Rob. “We took on the brand of VW because it goes hand-in-hand with our business. Hereford Heating will always use VW vans.” Get to know more info about how good vehicle signage for your business.

XPEL, 3M, Opti-Coat, CQuartz, SunTek, Waxes, Paint Correction, Sealants and so much more! This is one of the most common question asked from me and it’s time to break it down to create a sticky blog article. Need extra protection for your car? Why not try paint protection Melbourne? I can testify that it can protect your car paint.

Disclaimer: Before we get into this article, please note that there are several products out there and we recommend researching those companies or products that suit your needs best! This is just a general overview which will help you get started to seeking what you want for your vehicle. Good luck!

1. Waxes & Sealants

First of all, it’s important to differentiate the two. Traditional waxes are made from brazilian carnauba which has been classically used to protect various finishes beyond the automotive industry. It leaves a warm glow to the vehicle. On darker vehicles, this tends to leave a wet look while on metallic colors, it numbs down the flakes a bit and leaves a subtle ‘midnight’ tone to it. Waxes normally last for 1-3 months on average. Sealants are typically made from synthetic polymers that layer upon the surface of the vehicle and function similar to waxes but usually have extended durability. Most over the counter ‘waxes’ are actually sealants but termed ‘waxes.’ Sealants can last all the way from 1 month to a year.

Waxes and sealants come in various forms. Some of them are paste waxes which can be applied and then immediately removed. Some need to be left on for a bit of time before being buffed off. The newest ones are simple spray based sealants such as Opti-Seal and CarPro Reload that are simple ‘leave-on’ products that require minimal to no buffing off making them excellent consumer products and layer-able on top of coatings and clear films.

2. Coatings:

Coatings are relatively new compared to waxes and sealants. They are usually made from ceramics that can take more wear and tear while some of them giving high-end waxes a run for their money! CQuartz, Opti-Gloss Coat and various other coatings in the market are made from Silicon Dioxide while coatings such as Opti-Coat Pro is made from Silicon Carbide. Semi-permanent paint coatings such as CQuartz and Opti-Gloss Coat last for 2+ years on most automotive surfaces. Opti-Coat Pro and various permanent paint coatings can last for 5+ years on most automotive surfaces. Coatings are resilient to all environmental contaminants and reduce scratches caused by driving and washing. They also tend to perform well against bird bombs and chemical deterioration. Water-spotting can still be an issue on coatings but certain coatings such as Opti-Coat Pro Plus and CQuartz UK are resistant to water spotting. Just in case, we recommend washing your vehicle with deionized water. Several coatings also come with a warranty that is directly registered with the manufacturers of the coating. Normally, coatings are thicker and leave a candy-coated look to the vehicle. Pricing on coatings can vary from several hundreds to a few thousand dollars depending on your installer, the choice of coating and prep work required.

Sometimes, paint correction is recommended prior to coating the vehicle by your installer. Most of the time, when a car is finished at the factory or at the dealership lot, it goes through wear and tear or for some reason or another undergoes damage to the exterior.Additionally, the assembly process of the car doesn’t have time to clear out minor defects on the vehicle’s surface. Your installer may inspect your vehicle and recommend correcting specific areas prior to coating installation. Since coatings, unlike waxes, bond with the surface rather than just layer on top of it, it is recommended to remove any surface defects prior to locking the whole paint under the coating. For more, you may want to contact your local coating installer. There may be an extra charge on top of the coating installation for the additional paint correction and prep work required to remove defects on the vehicle.

3. Clear Films

Clear films were initially used in the military to protect vehicles and high-traffic components of military units. However, with time, they made it to the consumer market to be used in high-end performance cars. Now, they are commonly used to protect automotive surfaces against scrapes, rock chips and airborne contaminants. With the advent of technology, they also have self-healing properties which can allow some light scratches to be ‘healed’ with time or heat exposure. 3M, Xpel and SunTek some of the major distributors and manufacturers of clear films prominent among enthusiast and performance lovers. Akin to the coatings, it is recommended to remove all surface defects prior to the installation of the clear film. Films have the properties of reducing maintenance, resisting stain and fading and the best durability to offer in the detailing industry. Please note that your installer may recommend defect removal or paint correction prior to installing the clear film as well, depending on the film you want them to apply.

3M currently has 3M VentureShield, Scotchgard and Scotchgard Pro series. For more details, please click here. VentureShield and Scotchgard comes with a 5 year warranty while the Scotchgard Pro series comes with a 7 year warranty and is currently the flagship of 3M paint protection films.

SunTek also offers film protection for vehicles in the form of Top-coated film and the Matte film and as the name states, they are both clear and matte finishes respectively. They both come with a 5 year warranty.

XPEL currently offers 5 types of films: Xpel Ultimate, XPEL Stealth, XPEL Tracwrap, XPEL Xtreme and XPEL Armor. Ultimate offers self-healing properties along with stain resistance and optical clarity and is the choice for most vehicles. Stealth creates a satin finish on vehicles and is made from the same polyurethane as Ultimate. Tracwrap is a consumer friendly film that provides temporary protection that provides road abrasion coverage and takes less than 45 minutes to install and 5 minutes to remove. Xtreme is a film that offers the highest clarity and is the choice for vehicles that want protection without minimal film visibility. Armor is a 13 mils thick film that is built for off-road, commercial and industrial vehicles and aimed to take high punishment. XPEL Ultimate comes with a 10 year warranty. For more information, please click here.

4. Product Synergy

​Wrapping the entire vehicle can be expensive with full wraps costing a few thousand dollars. However, this is by far the best protection out there against all environmental contaminants. Certain companies such as XPEL have sealants that can be layered on top of the clear film to protect it against tree sap, water spots and various chemical corrosion. If price is an issue, then sometimes customers tend to wrap high traffic areas(eg. front fenders, hood, inside of door handles, side skirts etc.) while either waxing or coating the remainder of the vehicle. This gives the best of both worlds. It is to be noted that certain coatings can be layered on top of clear films and in our case, XPEL and Opti-Coat Pro/Plus work very well with each other. A combination of both the film and coating on a surface gives the best of both worlds ie. rock chip protection with enhanced environmental protection and ease of washing.
For customers on a budget, it is recommended to get the film on the high traffic areas while continuously reapplying a sealant on the remaining surfaces OR to simply just get the coating on the entire vehicle only. If the commute is on the freeway and outside of the city, ‘clear film and sealant’ is recommended to reduce rock chip damage. If the commute is within the city or rock chips aren’t much of an issue, then the ‘coating only’ solution may work. Of course, all of it can be mixed and matched. A good idea of the damage your vehicle takes is to look at the last vehicle you have been driving for 5 years. Does it have rock chips and on what areas? Do you park under the trees(tree sap and bird bombs!) or directly in the sun(UV damage inside and outside)? All of these factors will help you decide what to prioritize.

5. Conclusion:

Your car’s cosmetics are 30% of its value along with the fact that a nice car creates a positive image on the road. Clear films, sealants and coatings work mostly in synergy with each other. They each have benefits and drawbacks. Ultimately it’s up to you to decide what choice works best for you. Even more importantly, it’s critical to be wary of your installer for the coating and/or film because if you are buying something for the long haul, you need to be able to have a long term relationship with your installer.

For further inquiries about paint protection, click here.