5 Things To Do Before Selling  A Car | Detailing Edition

Do you wanna maximize your resale value of the car? Today we will present 5 things you need to take into consideration when selling a car. Pay attention as this is what most second hand dealers do to transform daily rides into saloon like cars.

We will also tell you the tricks as well as tools needed for such things. You can always trust a professional car detailing service to do it for you but it’s worth the try at home.

Floor Mats

The quickest and easiest way to make the interior look nice is cleaning the floor mats. This is where the most dirt accumulates and lets not consider how dirty they get in winter time when there is snow. Floor mats that are made of rubber are easier to clean as they can be scrubbed pretty hard and a simple rinse of water can get the most dirt out. If you have cloth floor mats we highly recommend using a pressure washer and leaving the mats to fully dry. Attention: Never put soaking wet floor mats in your car. It will smell. If you wanna go the extra mile: Use a professional detailing product. These chemical solutions usually make it easier and a bit of up and down scrubbing will get you the desired results. For full results we highly recommend going to a professional detailing shop. Related: Why You Need A Full Interior Detailing For Your Truck
dirty floor mats

The Interior

A nice body paint can attract people to come see your car, but a dirty interior can turn anyone back to the dealer looking for a brand new car. People are like that. They never know who owned it and how badly the previous owner treated the car. A dirty, smelly or not well kept interior will make any buyer turn their back.

Interior detailing service

5 Step Process Interior Cleaning:

    1. Take Out The Floor Mats: Try to hit the mats against a wall to remove most of the dirt. Make sure to wear a mask as you don’t want the debris to enter your lungs. Always clean the mat first so they dry by the end of your detailing process.
    2. Remove Bottles, Papers & Unnecessary Items: That McDonald bill, the bottle of water and receipts from the grocery store need to go. Babies in the back also drop tiny items like lollipops, biscuits and so on. Collect everything in a bag for disposal.
    3. Hoover The Interior: On this step your goal is to get as much of the dirt as possible. There will be debris that is stuck deep into your carpet but that is ok as we will get to that in the next steps.
    4. Use A Blower To Reach Sides & Areas Your Hoover Can’t Reach: This is the most important step. Not everyone might have a blowing compressor at home but try to find some alternative. Using the air from the blower you need to blow areas your hoover can’t reach. This way the trapped dirt will either fly out the car or move to an area you can reach with the hoover.
    5. Hoover The Interior Again & Clean The Plastics: Make sure you apply a bit more pressure to the hoover this time, changing the angle accordingly to go around tight areas like the gas and brake paddle. Now your last and most important step is to clean the dashboard and all of the plastics. Using a microfiber towel and dipping in water 2 – 3 times during the process will clean 80% of the dirt.

Tip: If you want to clean the dashboard and all plastics more thoroughly, we highly recommend you use a soft brush to clean the tiny areas. Wipe off with a microfiber towel afterwards.

Attention: Do not use a microfiber towel for screens. Use a leather towel instead!


You’re most likely thinking. How do I get rid of this odor, car smoke or anything in between. For any car sale, removing the smells is highly recommended. Nobody likes to ride in a car with a smoking smell. Some dealers won’t even consider the trade in. Here are 3 tips to remove odor.

How To Remove Car Odor?

Here are our 3 tips to remove car odor. There is no one pack that fits all. The tips you read online about adding coffee beans or other methods to absorb the smell won’t work.

Tip 1: Locate the smell. Most commonly there might be a leak in your car which can cause a smell. Once you have located the smell, with the help of any of your friends as you might get delusional about the smell, try to reverse engineer the leak. It’s highly recommended that you take care of the leak first and then tackle the odor. This type of odors usually go away with careful scrubbing of the interior with a hot microfiber towel. Just dip the towel in hot water and apply medium pressure to the area that smells. The towel should not be soaking wet! Try to clean the mold as best as you can.

Tip 2: Use Ozone. For this one you might have to go to a professional car detailer. Ozone will most likely help with odors like cigarette smell and stinky products like gel, etc.

Tip 3: Use a steam cleaner. Try to apply medium steam heat to the ac ventilators, or anywhere the air passes. If you have a smell coming from a particular part of the vehicle try to locate and hit it with medium to high steam power. Make sure to apply the heat depending on the material.

Attention: You can combine all 3 tips into an ultimate odor cleaning solution. There is no one way to do this. You will see the most results with the ozone generator.

Clean Your Wheels

This might sound like the easiest of the 5 we’re talking about today. If you use proper chemical solutions to break the dust away from your shiny wheels and scrub them the right way you’re done.

It’s also highly recommended to paint your wheels for better looks. There is no worse thing than having curbed wheels. This can be a fun DIY project you can do at home. Read more about painting wheels here.

clean wheels


This is what will grab the attention of your potential customers. A clean ride will always sell. Think about the day you bought your car. It was shiny and clean. Depending on the type of your car, what it was used for before and what you’re looking to get, you have different options when it comes to exterior cleaning. A simple, shampoo, and pressure wash is a must. If you wanna go more in depth you can opt to wax your car or polish it. After some years of winters and summers your clear coat will start to disintegrate. You can return back the shiny gloss of your car by polishing it. Some detailers will apply a light sanding to the clear coat and then do a 3 stage polish. For the best results, polishing should be done by a professional car detailer. You will leave marks on your car, especially if you have a black or glossy paint. You can try small panels if you have a white car. Read Next : 5 Reasons To Tint Your Windows