Detail Firm Glass Cleaner is a simple, no-nonsense product. It’s alcohol based so it’s safe for tinted windows. It doesn’t contain any dyes or added scents. This has plenty of power to cut through fingerprints, smudges, and even the residue left behind from your cousin Billy who can’t ride in your car without licking the window.
Gtechniq G1 Clearvision Smart Glass
I’m going to put this product here with the glass cleaner even though it’s applied to the outside of the windows. Gtechniq G1 is an awesome windshield coating and in my opinion, it beats products like RainX and Aquapel easily. It performs great but the part where it really stands out is when the coating eventually wears off. Unlike other products, it won’t cause your wipers to squeak or create streaks on the glass. It just quietly disappears.
I don’t spend the money for a specific product like this often but when I do, I think Gtechniq G1 is the clear winner. It’s expensive though so you have to really care about keeping your windows clear to justify the cost.
I used to use diluted all-purpose cleaner or Meguiar’s Super Degreaser when cleaning interiors but I found that those products often left a residue behind. Vinyl and leather surfaces shouldn’t feel slippery after cleaning (or they likely still have oil and grease built up on them) but they also shouldn’t feel sticky either. Lather does a good job of cutting through the grime and leaving behind a natural finish.
I use a variety of brushes on interiors. Just like your wheel brushes, this comes down to personal preference. It’s a good idea to have a stiff one for scrubbing carpets, a soft one for leather, and some smaller ones to reach into tight spaces. I also keep a scrub pad on hand for stubborn stains or scuffs but this needs to be used with caution to avoid damaging surfaces.
Vinyl and Plastic Protection
This is a no-nonsense product that does what you need it to and nothing more. Gtechniq C6 makes your interior panels much easier to clean and less likely to stain. Once applied, it’s usually just a matter of wiping the dust off with a damp towel periodically. What it doesn’t do is add any shine or smell. In fact, you won’t even know it’s there.
Gtechniq is one of the very few product manufacturers that acknowledge the fact that the surface of our seats isn’t actually leather. Even when an automaker starts off with real leather, it’s almost always covered with a plastic clear coat similar to your paint. Gtechniq L1 doesn’t claim to nourish or soften your leather, because it’s underneath the coating. Instead, it’s designed to protect the clear coat on your seats.
Traditional leather conditioners tend to cause more harm than good. They leave the surface feeling slick and greasy, plus they attract dirt which will cause premature wear over time. L1 Leather Guard is similar to C6 Matte Dash in that you won’t really know it’s there – which is exactly what I want in a leather protection product.
Surprise, another Gtechniq product. Based on my experience with their products, these are the guys to go to when you want to protect a surface. Simply spray Smart Fabric on your carpets and cloth seats (preferably 3 light layers) and walk away. Spills will puddle up on top of the carpet rather than soak in which makes them much easier to clean up.
I’m admittedly not the biggest fan of Chemical Guys or their way of doing business. Their interior scent products are pleasant though, although they don’t last very long. I’ll spray their Leather Scent under the floor mats and seats after washing a car to give it an added impact the next time I climb inside. It’s usually gone after driving it a few times – smells great though!
I’ve had this 5hp Ridgid vacuum for years now and it still works great. I chose to upgrade to the professional hose because the black plastic one it comes with is pretty flimsy.
This unit has all the suction you need to clean a car interior while being easy to maneuver and doesn’t take up much space. There’s a reason why you see so many car detailers using this vacuum – it works great!
Simoniz Handheld Steam Cleaner
I think it’s a good idea to have a steam cleaner in your arsenal but spending huge money on a big professional grade one is hard to justify if you’re only working on your own vehicles. Steam cleaners like this one from Simoniz are great for heavier interior detailing where chemicals alone aren’t enough to get the job done. It’s also great for tasks like removing window tint or detailing engine bays that are too sensitive to spray with a hose.