How does auto detailing work? We talked to local experts to find out what goes behind the scenes

Your car is one of your most frequently used commodities. It bears the brunt of harmful environmental factors like sunlight, winds, dust, etc while keeping you safe inside. Every car needs a deep cleaning session to keep it clean, hygienic, and fix any car troubles. This is where auto detailing comes into action.

Simply put, auto detailing is the thorough and detailed cleaning of a car. It works on the principle of washing one’s car inside out but is much more detailed and requires a few extra steps compared to simple car washing. Car detailing does not only involve the cleaning of the car but restoration of damaged components is also a part of it. When a car is detailed periodically, it is better protected from harmful UV rays and dust particles. The life of the car is extended and the aesthetics of its interior and exterior are preserved.

Today in the USA alone, auto-detailing has become a multi-billion dollar industry. In 2020, the auto-detailing industry was valued at $10.3 billion. Hundreds of industry-grade and highly efficient auto detailing products are available in the market which is used for cleaning the car’s interior and exterior.

Let us take a look at how auto-detailing works:

Mechanics of Auto Detailing

Auto-detailing comprises two steps – exterior car detailing and interior car detailing. Typically, the following services are included for both types of detailing:

Exterior Car Cleaning

  • This step involves the cleaning exterior surface of the car and then applying certain products to restore the shine and gleam of the car. It entails the following steps:

Exterior Wash and Dry:

This step is common with the basic car washing technique. In this step, the detailer sprays the car’s exterior surface with special products that help clear out grime, dirt, and dust. The car’s exterior is then wiped with a microfiber towel that leaves no traces and removes the products well. In this step, the rims, handles, and glass are washed and wiped.

Paint Claying

  • After the car has been washed and dried, it is rubbed with a clay bar. This helps get rid of contaminants and results in a smoother and cleaner surface. Car wax and polish give better results when applied over a clean and smooth surface.

Sealing or Waxing

After cleaning the car’s surface, wax or sealant is applied. This acts as a protective covering for the car and seals in the shine.

Professional auto detailers like Empire Auto Spa, offer multiple other exterior car cleaning services such as:

  • Trim repainting
  • Engine detailing
  • Headlight polishing
  • Bumper repair
  • Paint touch up

Interior Car Cleaning

Cleaning the interior is just as important. Auto detailing services for a car’s interior include:

auto detailing work


  • The car’s interior is vacuumed to get rid of dirt and debris. This includes vacuuming the seats, mats, carpets, headliner, and trunk area.

Scrubbing and Brushing

After the debris is removed physically, the floor carpets and mats are scrubbed to get rid of stains and spillovers.

Steam Cleaning

  • If carpets and seats have tough stains that cannot be removed through scrubbing and brushing, then they are subjected to steam cleaning.

Glass Cleaning

Windshield and windows are cleaned from the inside using a specially manufactured microfiber towel.

Leather Trimming

Leather covers are cleaned using a specially manufactured leather cleaner and soap.


  • To give the car a refreshed ambiance, some detailers spray the car’s interior with a deodorant. This gives the vibes of a newly-manufactured car.

In this article, we have covered the basic steps for auto-detailing. For more information, contact Empire Auto Spa. They provide auto detailing services in Florida.