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Car Appearance Tips

Some drivers may think spending money on the appearance of a car is frivolous, but it can actually be a wise investment, especially if you plan on trading the car in eventually. A dirty car or one with a lot of blemishes can sell for a lot less than a vehicle that looks like it's in pristine condition, regardless of what shape the engine is in. Caring for the appearance of your car is inexpensive and adds value to the vehicle, so it pays off to know exactly what works and what doesn't. Plus, the sense of satisfaction you get from doing it yourself and bringing your car’s shine back to new is worth it all.


  • Carry handy wipes in your vehicle for when you need to clean your glass, dash, leather, etc.
  • When cleaning the carpet, a stiff-bristled brush can be used to remove dirt and grime.
  • Be sure to use a cleaner that is designed for the surface you want to wash, whether it is leather, plastic, wood, upholstery or vinyl.



  • Don’t make the mistake of using dishwashing liquid on your vehicle as a car wash. There are harmful detergents in household cleaners that can strip the exterior of its protective wax and ultimately damage the paint.
  • Get a trigger-type spray nozzle for your water hose to help conserve water while washing your vehicle.
  • Washing your vehicle from the top down helps to reduce your chances of scratching the finish. Rinse the wash mitt or sponge frequently to keep accumulated dirt from creating scratches.
  • Use a terry cloth towel or chamois to dry the vehicle’s surface and prevent water spotting.
  • Wax your vehicle to help protect its paint and maintain its color and shine.
  • Be sure the vehicle is not in direct sunlight and apply wax in small sections.


Tires & Wheels

  • Use a wheel protectant to keep wheels easy to clean by providing a protective barrier.
  • Due to excess brake dust, the front wheels may be dirtier than the back wheels. Use a wheel cleaner that you spray on, let it sit for a minute and simply rinse off.
  • After cleaning tires, using a tire dressing will provide a glossy, set finish.


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