Do you need to clean your car before trading it in?
There’s a strange old myth out there that if you clean your car out before you take it in for part exchange, you give the negotiating power to the dealer—since the dealer now “knows” you’re there for a sale. Poppycock. The dealer knows you’re there for a sale because you’re standing on their forecourt.
The fact your car is clean emphasises the fact you look after your car, giving you more negotiating power. Fear not, it’s never too late to work in a bit of elbow grease. You’ve already put in the effort on the bodywork, now it’s time to blitz the wheels, windows and cabin.
How do you clean badly stained alloy wheels?
To get the best wash on your wheels, you’ll need a wheel brush. The Filmer Car brush 18797 is a mere £4.16. It attaches to your garden hose and has an angled head to get into those harder-to-reach areas.
Separate wheel wash might sound like a bit of an indulgence (and pricey!), but Bilt Hamber’s Auto Wheel is both award-winning and really effective. Brake dust builds up on your wheels and it’s tough to break down that grease, congealed with dust and dirt too. Auto Wheel shifts muck from your wheels using a colour-changing formula, with little manual effort needed.
Finish the tyres with Simoniz Tyre Shine. It’s £2 and will give the black of the tyres that new shiny glow that impresses prospective buyers.
What is the best to use to clean car windows?
The cheapest and most effective option for glass is to spritz a bit of vinegar on the windows and go crazy with the microfibre cloth or newspaper.
If a bird has mistaken your windscreen for a bathroom, spank £3.50 for a pack of Armor All Glass Wipes. Enabling a smear-free shine, you can chuck the offending mess in the bin quickly and conveniently.
What can I use to clean the inside of my car?
Now the outside is gleaming, it’s time to consider the cabin. After a good vacuum of the upholstery, carpets and mats, with the Black and Decker car vacuum, it’s time to evaluate the state of the seats.
Armor All’s Carpet & Seat Foaming Cleaner, £7.15 will get the majority of stains and marks out with a little elbow grease, but if the front seats are a bit of a mess, consider the Sakura SS3633 Car Seat Covers. For less than a tenner, you can give your car seat appearance a new lease of life.
The dash and trim can be cleaned up easily with a microfibre cloth and this £4 formula from Halfords.
How do I get rid of a bad smell in my car?
If you’re a smoker or damp dog owner, Meguiar’s Air Refresh is your new best friend. At a tenner, it seems pricey. It’s a one-time use canister you set off and close the doors. The odour eliminator brings your upholstery to a more appealing ‘new car’ scent so you’ll attract rather than repel potential buyers.
Follow up with the Air Cup Dry from Halfords. A fiver not only absorbs any excess moisture in the car, but it will perfume the cabin with a charming floral scent.
Almost done? Keeping your car in pristine conditions for punters is easier said than done. Big Wipes Industrial wipes, will help you keep the majority of muck off the shimmering job you’ve done. With a specially textured surface, any bird muck and dead bugs come off quickly. Remember to buff to a shine with your microfibre cloth to maintain the wonderful finish on your motor.
We hope our top tips were useful and help you get a high price and a quick sale of your motor.
Now, you should be ready to go. Let’s sell!