Detailing? Let the experts show you how


By Lawrence Papoff

A properly detailed car attracts customers with that new-car feel. A properly detailed car sells.

“I can’t overemphasize the importance proper vehicle detailing plays in a successful high turnover used car operation,” says Doug McCamley area sales manager for Leysons Chemical Products. McCamley is a nine-year veteran in the field.

McCamley says that if you don’t give your detailer enough working space and the right tools, don’t expect them to do a good job. A power washer, proper lighting, proper drainage and a good vacuum are just some of the tools for the toolbox.

When it comes to chemicals, a multipurpose cleaner, wash soap, dressing and a glass cleaner head up the list.

And while you’re at it, he urges dealers not to forget the environment: Make sure your soap and cleaner are biodegradable.

“Look for a certification such as OECD-301,” he says. “Product with this certification will biodegrade greater than 60 percent in only 28 days.”

Next, train your detailer and pay them well or they’ll move on; give them time to do the job.

McCamley urges dealers to supply a work order with a checklist to ensure nothing is missed. The order should also tell the detailer where to park the car and leave the keys.

In other words, “Don’t say it; write it!”

Garry Fiss is the owner of the Ziebart Tidy Car shop in Burlington, ON. Fiss says he does detailing work for Burlington/Hamilton-area dealers such as Eastgate Ford, Garden Motor Car (Mercedes-Benz), Halton Honda and Roseland Motors (VW).
Here’s his check list.
• Clean all interior windows.
• Check for and remove all scratches and cigarette burns from the dash and molding, especially along the window jams.
• Deep clean the upholstery to remove all stains and odour.
• To make the engine look like new, shampoo it and remove all oil stains from the engine and components.
• Polish and deox the paint to remove all impurities and that flat look.
• Use a high-gloss polish to seal the paint so that it will resist acid rain.
• Scrub and dress the tires to make them look like new.
• Go at the tires with a toothbrush to remove all brake dust.
• Clean the fender wells to remove all road stains.

Now, go out and sell that car!

Contact Doug McCamley at 800-539-7667 or
Gary Fiss can be reached at 905-639-3254.