Frequently Asked Questions
What is polishing or buffing? Is "Paint Correction" the same thing?
Polishing or Paint Correction is often a misunderstood and intimidating step in the detailing process. When applying wax, sealant or a coating you are placing a layer of protection on top of the paint. When correcting paint (aka cut & buff or polishing) you are removing microscopic amounts of paint or clear coat to reduce or remove the appearance of fine scratches, “swirl” marks and marring on the surface. The amount of paint that is removed depends on the aggressiveness of the polish, pads, and machine used.
What does it mean to “Clay” the paint?
An automotive clay bar or synthetic vulcanized rubber pad is used to remove contaminants such as industrial fallout, tar, over-spray and brake dust from the paint on your vehicle. After claying a vehicle it will be silky smooth. Clay works by gliding it across the wet surface of your paint in a back and forth motion. This will pick up and remove anything that protrudes from the paint. The best way to feel this is to place your hand inside a plastic baggie and move it across your paint. The roughness you may feel is the above surface contaminants that dull the appearance of your paint.
Will my paint look brand new again?
Yes, it can look like new. What I mean by "can", is there are several factors to be taken into consideration, such as the age of the paint, type of paint, previous care, current damage, and your desired outcome. Almost all paint can be corrected back into a show-quality shine. There are some severe cases that will require wet-sanding to remove deep scratches and to level the paint surface. There needs to be enough material, be it paint or clear coat to remove safely. If the paint or clear is too thin, it can’t be sanded. Most people are not looking for this high-end shine. The vast majority of customers want their paint to be glossy and just nice looking. All of my packages incorporate an All-In-One type of paint polish. This uses new technology in compound starts out fairly aggressive to remove swirls, light scratches and marring then breaks down into finer and finer particles to become a finishing polish then diminishes altogether. You will see up to a 70-80% improvement in the paint’s appearance with this. There is also a light wax that is left behind on your paint. This may be topped with a synthetic sealant for added protection.
What type of warranty do you provide
The only "Warranty" that is offered is with IGL Ceramic Coatings. We'll go over that with you at the time of application. For all of our other detail work, there is no legal warranty. We'll go over your expectations and needs and I'll let you know if they can be achieved. I am good at what I do, but we're only human and not miracle workers. Some stains, for example, are just that...stains. We'll do every effort to remove them, but some are just set for life. If there is an area that gets missed or you have a concern over, please get ahold of me within a week of your detail, and I'll come back out and we'll address it. We'll also do a post-detail inspection with you before we leave to ensure you are happy with our work.
Are you licensed and insured?
Yes and Yes!! Papers can be furnished on request.
I don’t like surprises! Are there any extra charges?
I understand that your vehicle is going to be dirty. In some situations an extra charge is necessary due to the time and effort it takes for extra dirty vehicles. Some examples of extra charges: heavily stained carpets, heavily stained leather, excessive pet hair, severe mold growth, excessive tar, etc... Before any services are performed on your vehicle, a thorough walk around will be performed. You will be informed about any extra fees before ANY work is started.
Can you customize a package to fit my budget?
Yes, if you have a certain budget that you do not want to exceed, we will go over it and come up with a package designed just for your budget and needs. If you are looking at a package that has services you don't really need, let me know and we can make it work for you!
Do I need to remove my belongings out of my vehicle before I get it serviced?
Please do! Firehouse Mobile Detail is not responsible for articles left in the vehicle. Please remove all items from compartments that you would like to have cleaned such as glove box and center console storage. We consider these areas private and will not go into them if items are present. Good time to go through all those papers! Any items left in the vehicle or found under seats, etc... will be placed in a bag for you to go through at your convenience. This includes garbage, you may have been looking for that receipt we found!
I lease my vehicle. Why should I worry about how it looks?
Chances are you’ll care when your lease is up! Check your contract. You’ll find that you’re responsible for the appearance of your vehicle when it is returned. If it was never washed, polished or waxed properly, you could be hit with a reconditioning fee ranging from $500-$2000! Take care of your investment even if you don't "own" it.
Why should I have my vehicle detailed?
Increased Value: By properly maintaining both the exterior and interior of a vehicle, the value can be significantly increased. Over time, the finish of your vehicle will experience oxidation, swirls, light scratching, fading, as well as a build-up of contaminants that are harmful to the various surface. By having your car professionally detailed, we will restore the original beauty, and preserve and protect it into the future. If you compare two identical vehicles, one that has been professionally detailed, while the other has not, the difference in resale value is typically in the thousands of dollars for most vehicles. When comparing very expensive luxury cars and exotics, the difference in value comes from professional detailing can be staggering!
Protect Your Investment: This directly involves increased value. Let’s face it; most vehicles depreciate rapidly, especially when they’re neglected. Protect your investment by having it properly maintained by a premium service offered by Firehouse Detail. When you drive that new expensive vehicle off of the lot, you know that it will immediately lose value. In order to get the most return on your investment, it is wise to have the appearance professionally maintained in order to retain as much value as possible. Professional Image: The condition of the vehicles we drive says a lot about the type of person we are. It’s no different than how we care for our homes, our landscaping, or our personal appearances. Beautifully prepared cars project confidence, professionalism, and just makes us feel good when driving or admiring them!
What types of payments do you accept?
We accept cash, check, debit, PayPal, Venmo, and all major credit cards via PayPal Here. I may not have change available for cash but can make adjustments to work with you. We typically invoice once the service is complete and payment is accepted upon completion of the vehicle. For business, corporate and approved personal accounts, an invoice can be e-mailed and paid via PayPal.
So what can I expect?
There are some limitations in detailing. Paint was discussed above and there are some scratches that are just too deep to be removed and will require filling or a panel repaint. Interior stains are just that – stained. Every attempt will be made to remove them, but a dye may be needed (if you wish). Seats and trim pieces are not removed. Exceptions are seats in SUV’s and vans that are designed to be easily removed without tools. You may find some debris that was unable to be removed by hand, vacuum or compressed air. There may be pet hair that was not fully removed as well. In keeping your value in mind, you likely would not want me to spend hours just vacuuming, as some types of pet hair in different carpet types can be almost impossible to fully remove with out using tweezers on every individual strand! Wheels are not removed to clean the backside of them. There is an additional charge for this if desired – let me know during the scheduling of your detail.