All cars, whether they`re electric, hybrid, or run on gasoline, need to have maintenance done on them on a regular basis. This includes things like oil and filter changes, tire rotations/new tires, refilling fluids, and replacing the battery every few years. These are all necessary treatments to keep your car running and extend its lifespan, but there are also other treatments that can increase the longevity of your car. These are known as cosmetic treatments— they improve the look of your car. However, some cosmetic car treatments are necessary when it comes to improving your car`s coat of paint and protecting it from the elements, such as rain, wind, hail, snow, and even pollen.
One of the most necessary cosmetic car treatments— and the easiest way to improve the look of your car— is simply washing your car. This can be done at a local car wash, or in the comfort of your own yard. The main purpose of a car wash is to remove the dirt and debris that tends to build up on cars over time.
However, the average car wash takes anywhere from 10 to 15 minutes, and can use up to 140 gallons of water. Fortunately, there are car washes that conserve water and are more environmentally friendly. You can also choose a waterless car washing method that`s great for extending time between washes.
Car detailing is a much more in-depth cleaning of both the outside and the inside of a car. The purpose of this deep cleaning is to maintain the “new car look” of the vehicle, and it can actually boost the overall value of a car. Detailing the outside of a car involves washing it with special brushes, and then going over it with a clay bar to remove excess debris. Finally, a sealant is applied to the exterior to shield the car from natural elements.
As for the inside, every crevice is carefully and thoroughly cleaned. Not only does this include vacuuming, but it also includes shampooing and maybe even conditioning the interior. This can be a very tedious task, but it`s worth it because it makes your car look brand new. Detailing, both the interior and the exterior, can be pretty expensive, but luckily it only needs to be done maybe once or twice a year.
Polishing a car can be a part of detailing it, depending on the car detailer you go to. Car polishing requires tedious buffing to remove the aged paint, scratches, and other imperfections that may be present on a car. It also involves conditioning the paint so that it won`t crack and/or peel. Like detailing, polishing can be done once or twice a year.
Waxing a car is usually done as a last step, after washing/detailing/polishing, as this is the final protective coating for your car. In addition to protecting your car from the elements, a good waxing adds a glossy, shiny finish to your car. Sometimes a full car detailing will include a waxing after polishing, though it`s not always necessary.
A paint job is another cosmetic car treatment, and it can also increase the value of your car. People choose to get paint jobs to restore the original color of their car, or to simply paint their car a different color. However, it`s recommended to get paint jobs only when necessary, because they`re expensive and they can take a while because of everything that goes into completing one, such as the oxidation and fading of the original paint. In fact, changing the color of anything on your car comes with both pros and cons.
The majority of cosmetic treatments you can get for your car can actually be more than just cosmetic— they can be beneficial. For example, treatments for headlights make it easier to see at night and in heavy rain. A car is an investment, so it`s important to maintain it and keep it safe for you to drive.
Cosmetic treatments can be pretty expensive, but buying a brand new (or used) car can be much more expensive. However, car maintenance (cosmetic or manual) is necessary and ongoing, so even if you purchase a new car it`s still going to need maintenance at some point. The bottom line: take good care of your car whether it`s brand new or older.