In just one short week we will welcome fall and all of its impending implications: colder weather, less sunlight, more debris, etc. While weather does, of course, depend on geographical location, there are still a few concepts that ring true for every car owner, no matter where they are in the world. These four tips will help you get ahead of the game and help to make sure your car looks great all season long.
Tips for fall car care
1. Seal your paint before the Equinox.
Ok, so when you wax or seal your paint doesn’t really matter as long as your paint doesn’t go unprotected. I say before the Equinox because it’s always better to be proactive. Given the amount of things most people have going on in their lives, protecting their car’s finish is often overlooked… so take this opportunity to get into action. Oh, and in case you were wondering, I recommend using an instant bonding paint sealant. It will go on in minutes, save you loads of time, and keep your paint protected well into winter. And if you really want your paint to pop, just apply a layer or two of a high-shine carnauba wax for increased depth and clarity.
2. Condition and seal exterior trim.
Fall is a great time to fix any cosmetic problems caused by summer weather (heat, sun, etc.). One thing the summer months are really good at is drying out and fading your exterior trim – be it hard plastic or rubber. The Sun has powerful UV rays that dry out and discolor surfaces that you wouldn’t normally even think to protect: weather stripping around doors and windows, windshield wiper blades, trim pieces, accents, and even bumpers in some cases. No matter what, it’s hard to deny that rich looking trim looks better than faded grey trim. So do your car a favor, tidy up a bit and get your trim back to black with a conditioning plastic sealant.
3. Prepare your car’s interior.
Summer tends to be a relatively clean time for the inside of your car, mainly because we’re not in our cars as much. Fast forward a few short months and wham… coffee, kids, hot chocolate, pumpkins, turkeys, and, who knows, maybe even a cornucopia. My point is that you probably have more going on come autumn, whether that be dinner parties or events, and making sure your interior is ready for anything can help keep your life runing smoothly. While a thorough detail should brighten things up a bit, protecting your car’s interior surfaces is really what I’m trying to hammer home: shield your carpet and upholstered seats against stains, and condition and protect any leather or vinyl surfaces from drying out during the colder months. Even just doing those two things will liven (and continue to brighten) the look of your car’s interior all fall long.
4. Keep “First Aid” handy.
The best way to really keep your car looking great this fall is to keep important detailing tools and car care products handy while you’re on the road. By no means do I mean detail while driving – I’m simply encouraging you to keep your car cleaning supplies in the trunk or glovebox. The best products to keep handy are a detail spray (for touching up the paint and removing things like bird droppings and finger prints), an interior cleaning product, a glass cleaner, and some accessories (microfiber cloths and maybe a vent brush). As long as your prepared, you’ll be all set for a spotless autumn.
While the best way to get your car looking great is to detail it, not everyone has time to sit down and do so. The above list is directed toward people who want to keep their cars looking great even if their schedule doesn’t allow time for a carpet shampoo. By protecting the finish, reviving exterior trim, preparing the interior, and making sure there’s some sort of detailing first aid kit in the trunk, any car owner will be ready for a sparkling clean autumn in no time.
Give these easy autumn detailing tips a try and share your own in the comments!