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  • Last modified 149 days ago (April 27, 2017)

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Expert tips on detailing vehicles

Staff writer

The devil really is in the details when it comes to detailing vehicles, one area professional said.

A touch tongue-and-cheek Nate Funk, detail manager at Midway Motors in Hillsboro, said there was one thing people can do to keep vehicles clean.

“Don’t have kids,” Funk quipped. “I’m just kidding. Kids are great. I have kids. But we had one vehicle come in this week where I guess the kids decided to get a little creative with crayons inside the car.”

He said he has seen it all from pop and mud stains to more disgusting unmentionable things, and suggested several tricks people can use when cleaning cars.

“Compressed air is probably the biggest help,” Funk said. “We use it to blow out the cracks in dashboards, under the seats, and in seat tracks.”

As of late, he said a lot of GMC Acadia and Chevrolet Traverse owners have been getting a lot of food down between the middle row of seats.

“It can bind things up and not let the seats slid as smoothly,” he said. “The compressed air gets it out of there nicely, and then we just vacuum it up.”

Compressed air is also a good way to clean out dusty air vents.

“Working on beat up old farm trucks you’ll probably never get it all out but it helps, you just gotta make sure to blow the air from inside to out.”

Moving swiftly on spilled pop or coffee is important when it comes to cleaning up stains, Funk said.

“The quicker you can get to it, the better it will be,” he said. “If you let it dry it’s going to be pretty hard to get out unless you have a steam-vac like we have here.”

He said that sometimes he has to remove seats in a vehicle to get to bad pop stains that have spread where his steam-vacuum cannot reach.

He also cautioned car owners against leaving cans of pop in their vehicles, saying cans can explode if they heat up too much inside a car sitting in the sun.

Conversely, mud stains are easier to tackle if left to dry. He said excess dried dirt is easier to scrape out of a carpet with a scrub brush or a knife then mud is.

He encourages people who happen to leave windows open when it rains, to dry out car interiors as promptly as possible by running their heaters.

“Once the moisture gets bottled up in there that’s when mildew comes in,” he said. “Then it’s best to just air it out and spray it with some Febreze.”

For people who have problems getting bugs off their paint jobs even with power washers, he recommended using an item called a “bug mitt.”

“It’s like a sponge but it has a mesh covering that shouldn’t scratch the car’s paint job,” Funk said.

Last modified April 27, 2017

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