A sparkling clean car can make your older vehicle feel brand new again but getting your car professionally detailed can cost you as much as a nice dinner out or a new pair of shoes. Fortunately, an initial investment in a few cleaning supplies and a little elbow grease can help you detail your car like the pros without breaking the bank.

1) Brush away dirt.

Getting rid of stubborn caked in dirt that builds up inside your car requires some extra effort, but the result is worth the workout. First, remove everything from inside your car—that includes all those coffee cups you swore you’d throw out yesterday. Then, use an old toothbrush to scrub the cracks between your seats and hard to reach areas of carpet under seats. As you’re loosening dirt and debris, follow the brush with a cordless handheld vacuum.

Homasy Rechargeable Handheld Vacuum Cordless available from Amazon

2) Avoid acid-based degreasers.

When you’re cleaning your tires at home, opt for an acid-free degreaser. Spray the wheels with a hose to remove surface debris and brake dust, then use an acid-free degreaser using a wheel brush to work between crevices and rims. Spray off the degreaser for sparkling tires.

Coralpearl Wheel and Rim Tire Detailing Scrubber available from Amazon

Oil Eater Cleaner and Degreaser available from Amazon

3) Double up on buckets.

When cleaning the exterior of your car, double up on buckets. Fill one bucket with a car cleaning solution mixed according to the bottle’s instructions, then fill the other with clean water. Dunk your sponge into the bucket with clean water and squeeze it out in between each swipe with soapy water to prevent spreading dirt around on the surface of your car.

Rubbermaid Roughneck Square Bucket available from Amazon

4) Wax in small sections.

Waxing in smaller sections ensures the perfect finish. Use a light pressure to apply paste wax with overlapping. When the wax starts to look matte and dry after about 5 minutes, remove it with a microfiber cloth. Only wax a clean and completely dry car.

Turtle Wax Paste Polish Wax available from Amazon

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