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Clean yourself!

No, I am not launching slander against your personal hygiene, I mean your car.

It’s easy, it’ll take a few hours, it’ll add hundreds to the value of your car, and most importantly, it’ll sell it to the first person you call, giving you time to get on with your life.

I am in the motor trade for a long time. I have trained eyes that can see through the dirt to spot a nice car in front of something that has just been started.

So why after all these years am I still attracted to shiny things? There are evolutionary reasons why, as humans, we judge books by their cover and are greatly influenced by first impressions. This is a discussion for another type of website, but it’s a basic fact. Now I won’t be fooled by something shiny. If I examine a car closely and get that irresistible scent of fresh paint and see that the dash has a good coating of some Brylcream-like substance on it, I’ll soon notice. But the facts are, I pulled up to an auction/sale yard and walked past five nice but dirty cars and headed straight for the shiny thing.

So why do some people put their cars up for sale and hope to sell them when the car is dirty and smells bad?

The worst offense is trying to present your car for a part exchange at an auto garage or supermarket when it is dirty. Many people are under the impression that shops will offer “book value” for their car no matter how they display it. While it is true that workshops work with accounting valuations, there is a big difference between the “Upper Book and the Lower Book”. Your job is to sell your car to the seller or dealer, as something they want and are willing to pay the premium for. To do this, you need to be enthusiastic about your car and present it at its best. A car with dirty ashtrays, fast food boxes strewn across the back seats, vomit-encrusted baby seats, a trunk inexplicably filled to the brim with debris from home or work, center console littered with CD cases and papers, etc. . And you’ll have that “I thought I was worth more than that” conversation with yourself later.

A quick word about car dealers. They can also be sold. Ultimately, a good salesperson is proactive in trying to make deals, that’s how they make money, and if he’s managed to convince them that his car is good, they’re more inclined to try to convince others. sales manager to enable them to give the extra £400 for your car to do the deal. Such a brilliant good thing…remember!

I’m going to give you some car cleaning/detailing tips. I’m doing this because I like to keep my own cars clean, and over the years I’ve amassed a whole assortment of every possible car cleaning product or tool in my garage.

If you don’t have any of these products and aren’t willing to buy them, or can think of a thousand other things you’d rather do than clean your car in your spare time, fair enough. I know where you’re coming from, you don’t need to read any further, but take this advice with you as the very least you should do.

Situation A: Your car is a shed and is worth more in the hundreds than in the thousands. You can run it through a car wash for £3, then spend another pound on a quick vacuum. If you have any power left after that, just wipe a damp (not wet) cloth over the dash and any interior plastic you can. If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, a baby wipe works wonders on scruffy plastic. Realistically, the value of a very cheap car is more influenced by how much tax and mot it has left, but it could still be the difference between being offered £200 for scrap or £500. Either way you’ll see a return of your £4 investment!

Situation B: Your car is worth a few pounds, possibly less than 6 years old. Then get a trash bag and get your clutter out of the car and reserve it for a professional valet. A proper full valet will set you back from £50 to £75 depending on where you are. The guys at mobile valet work hard for your money, but if you can, you’re better off leaving your car somewhere with facilities. They generally get better results.

A £75 quid valet in a because you’re unraveling? What a waste of money! Just to clarify my earlier point, here are today’s trade book values ​​on two example cars:

-2005(55) Ford Focus 1.6 Zetec Clima 5pr 60K. Clean Book Value £3600. Below Median Book Value £2600.
-2008(08) Volvo XC90 D5 SE Geartronic 5-Door 25K. Clean book value £19,900. Below median book value £17,500.

That is the commercial value. It is not the difference between retail and trade, but the high and low trade price. Does that £75 pound still look expensive?

There are better informed sites out there to give you car detail information, you should go and google them… but not until you have read my brief review.

Washed. If you’re thinking of spending £100 on a pressure washer from B+Q or Halfords etc, don’t bother. A garden hose is just as effective. The only time a pressure washer is useful is when you spend over £800 pound on a proper hot water boiler washer. With this you can make your car, roof tiles, your boat, Quads, even the gazebo of your Japanese gardens! In the real world, a hose is fine. Be sure to get under sills and wheel arches. If you can’t be bothered to do this go to a car wash, they’re only five (some guys near me now do it for £3!) this is just as beneficial as the wash.

Hair removal. I was raised old school with a can of Turtle Wax. Good product, but intensive tillage. For the last twenty years I have only used Autoglym products. They don’t give me a fuss to cover them up, they don’t need everyone to know they are the industry standard.

If your car really is a filthy beast covered in tar etc, then just have it validated as it’s not worth investing in all the pre-cleaning products etc, you’re going to have to polish shit. If your car is normal, Autoglyms Super Resin Polish will have it looking like new. Do one side at a time (apply and remove wax) and give it a strong wrist/nail action on scratches/pollen or tar. It has cutting properties and will remove many noticeable marks. When removing the polish, always use two cloths, a first shine to remove 90% of the residue and a final shine to give the car one last run over. I do the latter and find those microfiber cloths that you can buy at newsstands ideal.

Vacuum the interior and clean all the edges of the doors with a damp cloth. Remember that one of the most impressionable moments is when a potential buyer opens the driver’s door. If it’s covered in dirty grease and old manure stains, it’s no good. A good cleaning of the dashboard/plastics and door cards with a damp cloth will always make a big improvement. If plastics are piggies, baby wipes are a great tool. Run two or three times over a beat-up car with baby wipes and it’ll remove some stains you thought would never go away.

Once an interior is clean, that’s good enough. A quick spray of Neutradol is good or whatever other household product you have (it’s usually best to spray under seats). A serious mistake is to use a cheap silicone wipe that dirty the dashboard and steering wheel. Just clean is fine. It won’t add much value, but if you want me to recommend a product, again Autoglyms Vinyl and rubber care, it will give your interior a nice shine without grease and smells good too.

Washing and waxing the wheels should be good enough. If they are alloy and are badly pitted with brake dust, you can use an alloy wheel detergent. You want to spray the wheel, then attack with your old toothbrush, then hose it down in a minute. So, one wheel at a time, and as I say, it’s only used on very dirty rims.

Clean windows make a big difference, make sure you do it inside and out. Don’t use household products, again Autoglym has some products and FastGlass is the easiest to use. If you have nothing else use a damp chamois (leather). You can lightly wax the outside of your windows, but never your windshield. Do this and you’ll go blind as soon as it rains.

Not using rim paint if such a thing still exists? Most tire shine is fine, again Autoglym Instant Tire Dressing gives tires that shiny new look with just a spray.

If you ever consider buying a polisher to polish your cars professionally, don’t. A cheap one under £50 will have no power and will be more of a hassle than it’s worth. A professional polisher will burn off your baby’s paint in less than 5 seconds and cover all edges with white wax residue. Strictly for professional use.

If you have scratches on your car that look like they were applied with a screwdriver, there’s not much you can do about them. But he would be surprised at how many minor scratches and scratches are buffed out. Super resin polish will get the light ones out, for something heavier I have professional abrasives from 3M and Farecla. You can poke around under your kitchen sink and look for something with light abrasive qualities (no, not a Brillo pad!) I’ve used brasso and found a wood polish that does the job. If it’s stuck, even toothpaste can take away the bad look of a scratch (and leave your car feeling minty fresh!)

Thinking of taking care of some touch-ups? Be very careful, make sure you touch real scratches and stone chips. I’ve seen cars with birdlime and tar. Be very selective when playing. If your car has three or four stone chips on the leading edge of your hood that are unsightly to look at, then touching is good. If your car is full of chipped pebbles, don’t even start it. A car that has had the dot printer treatment looks junk and will take you all day.

Well, I think I’ll leave it there. I may be back with a few more tips for car fetishists who like to take the wheels off to clean up the interior, but that’s another chapter.

Well, get to scrubbing!

copyright 2011 http://www.motordealing.com

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