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Your car endures a lot as you’re traveling on the road. Aside from the mechanical aspect of maintaining a car, you may also be concerned about your car’s overall appearance. Whether your car costs millions of dollars or hundreds of dollars, you want to keep your car well-maintained and in the best shape possible.

When it comes to car detailing costs, there are different factors you need to consider. Let’s discuss car detailing and everything it involves.

How Much Will it Cost to Detail My Car?

Car detailing can cost as little as $50 and as much as $300 or more. It all depends on the detailing services you require. A lot more is involved with car detailing than you realize.

What is Car Detailing?

Car detailing or automotive detailing is a set of services that help you maintain your car inside and out. This type of detailing goes beyond a simple car wash. Auto detailing is like a spa for a car. Vehicle detailing can consist of the following:

  • Exterior detailing
  • Interior detailing
  • Complete auto car
  • Car restoration

Car Detailing Basics

The basics of car detailing can include:

  • Shining the tires
  • Washing and drying the car’s exterior by hand
  • Vacuuming the floorboards and seats
  • Sealing, waxing, and polishing the car’s paint
  • Cleaning the glass and surfaces

Car Detailing Pricing Factors

Different factors contribute to the price of car detailing. Let’s take a look at these different factors.

The Size of the Car

The size of the car is one essential factor that determines the total cost of your car detailing services. Smaller cars cost less to detail than larger ones. For instance, if you have a sedan, you’ll pay less money to have your car detailed than you would if you needed an SUV detailed.

Specific Services

The car detailing services you choose will also determine the final cost of the detailing services. Some auto detailing shops charge more money to detail the inside of your car than the outside of your car. There are also extra services you can add to give your car the appearance you want, such as headlight restoration.

Dirt Level

Yes, dirt level is a thing! If your car is excessively dirty (no judgment here), you will pay more to have your car detailed. The final price you’ll pay depends on the company’s definition of “dirty”.

Types of Products Used

Auto detailing companies often use high-quality products to clean your car. Although you’ll pay more money to have your car detailed with these products, the results will last longer. Higher quality products are used when you ask for high-end detailing services, which is optional. Eco-friendly products can also be used to detail your car.


Where you live can also be a factor in the price you can expect to pay for car detailing. If you live in the city, you will pay more money for car detailing services than you would if you lived in a rural area. Why is there an increase in the cost? In the city, businesses have overhead costs, including utilities, rent, and other expenses that cost more in the city than in a rural area.   

Available Discounts

If you’re interested in receiving discounts, it’s possible if you’re getting more than one car detailed. You can also save money if you pay for a “full detail” car detailing package.

Car Detailing Extras

Car detailing extras are known as add-ons. Depending on what you want for your car, there may be an add-on service you can purchase to ensure your car has everything it needs. There are different add-ons available, such as:

  • Carpet Cleaning
  • Engine bay cleaning
  • Trim restoration
  • Pet hair removal
  • Air filter replacement
  • Light scratch removal
  • Leather reconditioning

Car Detailing Price Breakdown

Car detailing is comprised of a variety of services. Let’s check out the two most common auto detailing services and their cost.

Interior Detailing

The most basic interior car detailing package can range anywhere from $100 to $500 or more. You can expect most interior detailing packages to include the following:

  • Interior vacuuming (seats, floors, trunk)
  • Interior dusting (dashboard)
  • Door cleaning (handles, locks, etc)
  • Floor mat cleaning (pressure wash)
  • Interior plastics cleaning (cup holders and dashboard)
  • Glass cleaning (windows)

Exterior Detailing

Most exterior detailing costs start at approximately $75. However, depending on any add-on services you want, you can pay $200 or more. The total price you will pay depends on the size of your car and the detailing package you choose. Exterior detailing packages can include:

  • Wheel cleaning (dressing, degrease, and protectant)
  • Entire exterior wash (often performed by hand)
  • Clay bar treatment
  • Protective coating or wax

The Bottom Line

Having your car detailed helps your car last for a long time. The cost of detailing your car depends on how “detailed” you want your car to be. If you’re on a budget, no problem, stick to the basic car detail packages. Your car will still look awesome!