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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Wash, Wax, Detailing and Cosmetic protection/repairs > Paying Someone to detail your car?Really worth it?



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      05-02-2013, 06:08 PM   #1
DZheng
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Paying Someone to detail your car?Really worth it?

Ive never paid someone to detail my car before. So i went to a detailer today and the guy told me it would cost me $200-$300 for a complete detail. This means wash/clay/wax and the whole interior too. I usually just do this all myself. Have you guys ever paid someone to detail your car before and is it really worth it? Just curious if i should or is it a waste of money.
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      05-02-2013, 06:16 PM   #2
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Yes if you are polishing/compounding. Never take it to the dealer for detailing. they will fck your car up so bad. Pay me to do it
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      05-02-2013, 06:42 PM   #3
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Yes if you are polishing/compounding. Never take it to the dealer for detailing. they will fck your car up so bad. Pay me to do it
Agree 100%

A "Complete Detail" means different things to different people. If you are talking about general cleaning up then it is a matter of how much your time is worth. If you are talking about "Paint Correction" without using any fillers then it is something different entirely.

Without the experience and the right tools, it is hard to go from this....



to this



,or this....



to this.

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      05-02-2013, 07:31 PM   #4
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I usually wash my car once every 2 weeks by hand interior/clay/wax , but I tried to get the car detailed twice year by a professional just because I am not comfortable polishing it myself. Do not take to dealer for detailing, they will screw it up. If you are in the bay area I highly recommend Detail Addict. They will do an AMAZING job for that price. Highly recommend checking them out!!
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      05-03-2013, 02:02 PM   #5
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Ive never paid someone to detail my car before. So i went to a detailer today and the guy told me it would cost me $200-$300 for a complete detail. This means wash/clay/wax and the whole interior too. I usually just do this all myself. Have you guys ever paid someone to detail your car before and is it really worth it? Just curious if i should or is it a waste of money.
The hell? That much for that? My friend is a detailer and he doesnt charge no were near those prices for that. I believe he told me $80-$100 for a car for everything and thats throwing leather conditioner in there to w/ full interior wash.
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      05-03-2013, 02:14 PM   #6
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That does seem like a lot if he's not going to remove any defects in the paint.
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      05-03-2013, 02:38 PM   #7
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The hell? That much for that? My friend is a detailer and he doesnt charge no were near those prices for that. I believe he told me $80-$100 for a car for everything and thats throwing leather conditioner in there to w/ full interior wash.
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That does seem like a lot if he's not going to remove any defects in the paint.
I know this one place that detail air force one plane and he charges about 135 but its like 10 miles away from my house. the one by my house charger 200-300. So i think im getting ripped off. Ill just detail my own car today and post pics and you guys tell me what you think.
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      05-03-2013, 02:46 PM   #8
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A good wash and wax should cost you around $125-$150. If you need paint corrected, however, it will start costing you around $300 and up because it is very time consuming AND you want someone that knows what the are doing. Putting a buffer in the wrong hands could end up permanently damaging your paint to the point where it needs to be repainted.
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      05-03-2013, 02:53 PM   #9
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A good wash and wax should cost you around $125-$150. If you need paint corrected, however, it will start costing you around $300 and up because it is very time consuming AND you want someone that knows what the are doing. Putting a buffer in the wrong hands could end up permanently damaging your paint to the point where it needs to be repainted.
I will wash/clay/ and wax and post picture tonight. ive never buff or polish before.
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      05-04-2013, 02:05 PM   #10
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What color is your car? I have jet black and paid for a detailer to compound my car and apply Opti Coat.

I first tried the DIY route with hand applied polishes and wax and wasn't getting the results I wanted. I wouldn't trust myself with a polisher and compound either.

I don't think it's worth it just to wash/clay/wax you can do that yourself easily.
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      05-12-2013, 05:15 AM   #11
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I would personally detail my car myself. Not only you get to save the extra money, but also, you will do it right using your own procedures when it is finished.
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      05-12-2013, 08:37 AM   #12
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I would personally detail my car myself. Not only you get to save the extra money, but also, you will do it right using your own procedures when it is finished.


I agree with FoSho and I'm not the most trusting when it comes to people messing with my cars. Some of the prices quoted for detailing, you could have bought all the tools and polishes. Griot's Garage has some decent stuff for detailing if you are uncertain about the various products available. Use the graduated machine polish systems they offer. Do a little practice on somebody's beater car as a favor (Mom, friend, relative etc) Take your time, work in the shade, wash the car first before breaking out the 6" random orbital polisher and stay away from seams and edges with that random orbital polisher where the paint is thinner. I finalize and maintain the finish by using my secret formula using a good car wash soap and squirt in some Zymol Cleaner Wax which is water soluble in the my wash bucket. The nice thing about using the Zymol Cleaner Wax in with the wash water is the wax gets into all the seams and cracks but doesn't leave any wax residue. Shammy the water off and enjoy the look of all your hard work. As an added bonus, you'll get a good upper body workout so you can skip the gym that day.

Best of luck!
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      05-13-2013, 07:40 PM   #13
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I am a professional and have been in the business for over 10 years. Most of the "detailing" companies can give a bad reputation for the companies built around drive and passion.

I have told this to many people... There are two types of detailers,
1) The kind that are high turnover, in and out, reuse towels/pads, don't research techniques products, but are good at cleaning the dirt off. I wouldn't pay over $100 for this type of detail. Good for your every day soccer mom van.
2) The kind that look at a detail as another name for reconditioning. It's a passion, not a job. Not a quick service but it's well worth the money.
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      05-13-2013, 08:05 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jslym777 View Post
I am a professional and have been in the business for over 10 years. Most of the "detailing" companies can give a bad reputation for the companies built around drive and passion.

I have told this to many people... There are two types of detailers,
1) The kind that are high turnover, in and out, reuse towels/pads, don't research techniques products, but are good at cleaning the dirt off. I wouldn't pay over $100 for this type of detail. Good for your every day soccer mom van.
2) The kind that look at a detail as another name for reconditioning. It's a passion, not a job. Not a quick service but it's well worth the money.


I understand fully. Unfortunately, most of the population thinks laying down a layer of LSP (wax/sealant) is detailing. They don't understand the prep work that goes in for a typical paint correction session. Very much like the 50/50 shot you posted on another thread..... not many will know that it was probably a 2-3 step process or that it took 7 hours plus to complete. Nice Job BTW.
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      05-13-2013, 08:24 PM   #15
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I have customers bring me cars from out of state because they know and trust that what they are paying for is worth it.
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      05-16-2013, 05:51 PM   #16
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To the OP:

I think it is absolutely worth it, IF you are getting what you paid for. Like others have mentioned, find a guy, if you dont already have one, who will do a complete detail job for $150 and its worth it. To me at least, who has virtually no experience with a porter and wants a like-new finish after its all said and done.
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      05-16-2013, 09:13 PM   #17
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Definitely worth it. I am a DIYer and I hate paying someone else to do something that I can do myself but I just can't bring myself to spend a day plus washing, clay baring, washing, polishing, waxing etc etc. I would rather pay a professional that is practiced and knows what they are doing.
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      05-17-2013, 07:08 AM   #18
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it's worth it for black paint.
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      05-17-2013, 08:42 AM   #19
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A proper detail with paint correction takes time. Many factors such as brand (paint harness/softness varies by brand), current condition, even color affect the process. My first detail was my AW 335i, took me 15 hours from start to finish for the 3 step correction. My wifes on the other hand (Navy Honda CRV) took 6 because the clear is so much softer and easier to correct.
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      06-28-2013, 10:04 AM   #20
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jslym777 nailed it. But first off, let me just say this: I don't like leaving my car with ANYONE FOR ANY REASON, not even an simple oil change, if I can help it. Regarding your local car detailers, most of these places hire teens or highly unskilled laborers who have no idea how to really detail a car. Also, remember, car dealers only know how to clean the car as though it was going to be for sale, which is entirely different than taking a car to get fully detailed once or twice a year. The worst part is, all these "pros" essentially get it clean, but the proof is in the pudding (hence "detailing") and this is where they come up short - way short, particularly with the interior work. I won a $125 full detail at a raffle for one of these pro-details. I took in my 1 year old company truck (dark blue metallic) and it looked just awful; swirl marks & hazed on the outside, smeared with weird goop on the inside, with many areas missed that I would normally do myself - even things as simple as the windows. Ditto with a very new Honda Odyssey at the dealer. Very discouraging. So, after a few experiences like this over the years, I've come to realize that if you want to get it done right, do it yourself. I'm sure big cities have real pros that really do a fine job inside and out, but that's when the $$$ starts adding up, and frankly, doing it yourself is so much more satisfying that paying someone anyhow.
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