Automotive GPS Units – Practical Technology

Prior to the invention of automotive GPS units, traveling to unknown areas had to be done through reading a map and/or asking for directions. Both methods had problems. For instance, how can one effectively read a map while driving? Map-reading is only best if there is another passenger in the car, which isn’t always possible. Asking for directions can also be annoying, at least if the person giving the directions does so in a manner that is not as clear.

Fortunately, with the emergence of automotive GPS units the process of map-reading and getting directions has never been easier as each can be done either through voice activation, touching the screen, pushing buttons or a combination. Maps pinpointing the exact location pop right up on the screen, while directions can be given through a computer-generated voice. Nothing could be easier or better. The only issue is deciding which automotive GPS unit should be purchased. This article will serve as a guide telling consumers what they should be on the lookout for when choosing automotive GPS units.

The first area of consideration when buying automotive GPS units is seeing how accurate the device is. One way to determine this is by how many channels the GPS unit has. This is because more channels means the unit will be able to communicate with a larger number of satellites, resulting in more coverage. Another way to determine the accuracy of most automotive GPS units is through how its antenna is designed. Make sure the antenna is placed in an area of the unit where it will be able to stand freely.

The next thing to think about when looking at automotive GPS units is size. There are some automotive GPS units that will not be portable. Onstar, which has to be installed in one’s car, is an example of an automotive GPS unit that can not be moved from car-to-car. Many other automotive GPS units vary in portability.

Thirdly, perspective buyers of automotive GPS units should take notice of a unit’s interface. More expensive automotive GPS units will contain voice-activation and/or touch-screens, while cheaper ones can only be used through a series of buttons. If another person is in the car, using buttons is not as bad, but if only the driver can use the unit, it is important that it be as hands-free as possible. It is also important to try to get an automotive GPS unit that has the capability to give directions through a computer-generated voice. Doing so is another way to ensure that the driver of the car keeps their eyes on the road and nowhere else.

The software that the automotive automotive GPS unit uses is also critical. Most top of the line units have very good mapping software included with the unit. However, as time passes the mapping software becomes out of date. You should make sure that you automotive GPS units software is updated at least once every 6 months. Frequently there is cost for this service but if you live in fast growing urban environment then it is a good investment. Your automotive GPS unit is only as good as its operating and mapping software.

When looking at automotive GPS units one should consider: ease of use, accuracy, size and interface. Keeping these elements in mind ensures that a buyer obtains an automotive GPS unit that is reliable and will best assist them when they are on the road.

Automotive Repair Equipment Financing

The very competitive automotive repair industry depends highly on sophisticated equipment which is very expensive. Automotive repair equipments like hydraulic lifts, alignment equipment etc play a vital role in the business operations of this industry. Although expensive, they are indispensable in various repair services. Therefore automotive repair equipment financing is assuming greater importance in the automotive repair industry.

The traditional lending institutions may not be willing to finance sophisticated automotive repair equipment due to their unique nature. However, there are a few genuine financing companies which understand your needs and requirements. They offer financial assistance under various categories and at better interest rates.

Commercial car wash requires lot of equipment and so an automotive repair industry needs to be equipped with all the essential equipments for the same purpose. Automatic car wash, In-bay car wash system, vacuum system etc are some of the sophisticated equipment required in car wash processes. But they are quite pricey especially in case of multiple car washes. Therefore, one can acquire the sophisticated equipments through automotive repair equipment financing.

Tire changer is another important component of any automotive repair shop. Nowadays people are particular about the tires they use and thus excellent tire changer equipment is indispensable for satisfying the customers. Automatic tire changer, PAX tire changer, manual tire changer are some of the equipments available in the market. They can be expensive and so the automotive shops need to look for automotive repair financing.

Auto body equipment plays a crucial role in making a wrecked vehicle to useful. This work however involves full line of auto body equipments like straightening equipment, painting bays and so on. In case they have to be worked on various types of vehicles, a full line of auto body equipment can be quite expensive. In such cases the help of automotive repair financing is much required.

Wheel balancer is another vital tool in an automotive repair shop which helps in assessing the potential problems in the wheel, quickly and accurately. Therefore this equipment helps in providing improved customer service. But the cost of wheel balancer is high and so wheel balancer financing provided by some reliable financing companies is essential.

Wheel alignment equipment is another valuable tool in an automotive repair shop. It saves time and helps the mechanic in easy and quick assessment and repair in any vehicle’s wheel alignment. Though essential, they are quite costlier and so many repair shops are not able to afford it. However automotive repair equipment financing provides valuable service to repair shops to acquire these essential tools.

A frame machine in an automotive shop helps to provide life even to severely damaged vehicle. It is also quite expensive, but some valid financing companies offer easy financial assistance to acquire a frame machine.

Automotive repair equipment financing therefore helps almost all automotive shop owners to acquire the valuable automotive repair tools. The financing companies provide straight forward approach in offering financial help. They provide fast approval with minimum application process. Even an online application is enough to get financial help from them. These companies offer help at better terms so that owners can pay their bills in low easy monthly installments.

Car Detailing and Customer Service

Often customers get upset after they’ve had their car detailed and much of the problem has to do with communication issues. Customers need to fully explain what they expect in the auto detail when they get done, and ask if the detailers if they will indeed, be taking care of all those items that they have addressed. By doing this the customer will find that much of what they had asked for is completed to their liking, if not everything. Communication is the key, and it is important to remember that.

Of course, by the same token the professional auto-detailer must also understand what is going on and be very careful to look over the car and discuss with the customer various issues with the paint, any damage on the car, and what they can and cannot do for the interior, exterior, and clear coat. An automotive detailing professional should also explain their check list to the customer; what they will be doing and how they will be doing it.

This way the customer will understand why the price is well over $100, all too often, customers of such services get sticker shock, and do not understand the value. Happy customers are predicated on proper communication, and failure to communicate causes future challenges. If you want all the best referrals, then you are going to have to learn how to communicate and talk with the customer. Believe it or not the most successful auto detailers are the best communicators, not necessarily the best craftsmen of their trade. Please consider all this.

Lance Winslow – Lance Winslow’s Bio [http://www.aircraftwashguys.com/historicals.shtml]. Lance Winslow says auto detailing customers should shop around by phone first; telephone service.

Note: All of Lance Winslow’s articles are written by him, not by Automated Software, any Computer Program, or Artificially Intelligent Software. None of his articles are outsourced, PLR Content or written by ghost writers. Lance Winslow believes those who use these strategies lack integrity and mislead the reader. Indeed, those who use such cheating tools, crutches, and tricks of the trade may even be breaking the law by misleading the consumer and misrepresenting themselves in online marketing, which he finds completely unacceptable.

Automotive Advertising Agencies Should Attend the 2010 NADA Convention to Listen and Learn

Automotive advertising agencies have been forced to take on additional responsibilities in today’s troubled economy. As the President of national network of independent affiliated automotive advertising agencies and the host of an auto industry social networking resource portal I recently promoted the 2010 NADA Convention on my blog talk radio show as a real world venue similar to the online resources that I rely on to listen and learn and contribute to so I can presume to teach.

I consider the NADA convention as a must attend event for automotive advertising agencies, auto dealers, auto industry vendors and decision makers that regularly tune in to listen and learn from the auto industry experts regularly featured on various online resources. The NADA Convention is the real world version of online social networking communities focused on sharing best practices for the auto industry and a perfect platform to make new friends and connect with old ones in both the real and the virtual world.

The NADA Convention is a means to stay ahead of the competition by learning about the new Internet technologies and applications being introduced by the vendors and speakers that will be featured at the convention. The 2010 NADA Convention is being held in Orlando, Florida this February 12th. through February 15th., 2010 at the Orlando Convention Center. Additional information on the convention is available at their site — NADA.Org — and their online pre-registration savings of $50 -$75 has been extended to January 27th., 2010. I strongly advise anyone seeking to survive in today’s consolidating auto industry to register before the deadline to take advantage of the discount with the confidence that your investment of your time and money will provide a R.O.I. that can’t be duplicated by any online auto industry-centric venue; including my own.

My affiliated agencies are connected by a proprietary online communication/distribution system I developed in December of 2001. I designed the operating system that links this national network of independent businesses as a means to leverage the resources of the participating automotive advertising agencies, production partners and select vendors to allow them to compete with national automotive advertising agencies. The resulting savings in fixed and semi-variable expenses coupled with access to a wide variety of production and creative resources for the member agencies was made possible through their use of several online technologies that were developed to support the growing World Wide Web.

I reference this history as evidence that I have practiced what I now preach. These same technologies must be applied to the internal processes of auto dealerships to allow them to survive in a consolidating auto industry. The combination of the resulting efficiencies realized in technology enhanced selling systems in brick and mortar auto dealerships integrated with their online showrooms, and the newly developing applications being applied by automotive advertising agencies to promote their auto dealer clients on the Internet, is the key to profitability today and survival tomorrow.

The NADA Convention allows auto industry vendors to present new cutting edge applications to auto dealers and automotive advertising agencies who are anxious to gain an advantage over the competition. More importantly, in a consolidating auto industry auto dealers must sell more for less to satisfy budget conscious and better educated online car buyers and the technology being applied to sell vehicles on the Internet Super Highway is the way to do it in a scalable and cost effective manner!

The blog talk radio station featured on my portal is another example of how a new technology platform can enhance the reach and performance of an automotive advertising agency in today’s Internet driven marketplace. I use various blog talk radio shows as an online communication system for my network to share best practices and new vendor applications with site visitors surfing the web to get the inside story on the auto industry. In addition, my shows attract new vendors anxious to tell their story to the decision makers who follow me on the World Wide Web which allows me to review cutting edge automotive advertising applications before competing agencies know that they exist.

Several vendor clients of mine were discovered during their online reviews and most of them will be represented at the NADA Convention. Why? Because the NADA Convention is the perfect real world venue to launch new products and services and this year is no exception.

Where to Shop for Automotive Parts and Equipment

A complete range of automotive tools and equipment can be found online. Consumers do have the advantage when shopping on the Internet, as they are not only provided quality merchandise, but merchandise at a discount. Top providers on the Internet will stock a wide range of automotive tools and equipment from recognized brands in the industry. Many consumers are turning to the Internet due to its affordability. Automotive tools and equipment, are expensive, and if you are in search of parts that are hard to find, the Internet is often the best source there is. When you begin to shop and compare the various online sites, you will notice that the greater reputability a company has, the more automotive tools and equipment they will offer. Automotive tools and equipment are necessary at some point in time for every driver that performs repairs on their vehicle. Workshops require automotive equipment that is specific to repairs so that they can safely and efficiently perform the repairs.

What types of automotive tools & equipment will you find online?

Automotive equipment will include all the automotive equipment that is found in the marketplace today such as:

* Tire changers

* Suspension and brake testing systems

* Brake lathes

* Short and mid-rise lifts

* Pit lifts

* Post lifts

* Mobile column lifts

* Auto lift equipment

* Wheel alignment and wheel balancers

* And, more

Other types of automotive equipment and automotive tools that you will find from the online vendors that are used by both the automotive shops and the home mechanics will include:

Lubrication Equipment: Each vehicle on the market has so many moving parts that comprise the operation of the vehicle and each of these moving parts need lubrication. Grease valves, oil meters and oil pumps are just some of the lubrication equipment that you will find online.

Air compressors: Air compressors are used to inflate a tire or tires. They may also be used to operate other pneumatic tools, as it is a source of compressed air. Air compressors come in many different makes and designs such as the electric powered, gas powered or diesel powered.

Other Automotive Tools: Other automotive tools that are used in both the industry and by the at home mechanic are hammers, dollies, screwdrivers, jacks, and monitors. These are specific for automotive repairs and automotive tools that the online vendor should have a variety to offer.

Service and Exhaust Equipment: For the shop or mechanic that is servicing vehicles, the proper service and exhaust equipment is necessary. This equipment includes brake fluid exchangers, booster cables, paint, battery chargers and so on.

When you do find an online store that seems to provide you with exactly what you need, make certain that they are reputable. The online site should have everything in tact on their site from their terms and policies to their customer service. Also, a description of each product that they offer to the consumer should be detailed. Dealing online is one of the greatest advantages to the consumer, and in the auto industry, the advantage is even greater.

Towels For Car Detailing

There are many different types on towels for car detailing on the market; it is best to use proper types when working on an automobile. High quality auto cleaning and detailing towels should always be used to prevent scratches and ensure a lifelong shine you can be proud of. We will discuss the different types of towels for car detailing. By using products on your own vehicle you can determine the types of towels you might want to package and resell as a business. Proper towels play an important role in your car detailing supplies. There are two basic types of towels preferable for automobile use.

Lint Free, 100% Cotton Terry Cloth

Never use any towel on a car this is not at least lint free or 100% cotton. Other types of towels may leave scratches on painted or interior surfaces. Most individuals prefer to use these types of towels for drying the exterior of their cars. Lint free towels will ensure that no specks of towel are left behind on a cleaned vehicle, and 100% cotton will provide a very absorbent and smooth cleaning towel. These towels for car detailing have been a staple for many years, and will continue to be used by individuals.

Micro fiber Towels

Micro fiber towels are mainly used for waxing cars and for quick touch-ups. Because of their properties, they are excellent for detailing and waxing paint surfaces. Micro fiber towels can be rubbed across the exterior and interior of a vehicle to remove dust without damaging surfaces. When lightly moistened, micro fiber towels can remove excess wax, grease, dirt, airborne contaminants and moisture from vehicles surfaces. These towels are soft to the touch and very absorbent. Extra large micro fiber towels can be used in place of terry cloth towels for drying a vehicle. Micro fiber towels can be rung out several times to remove all excess water. Micro fiber towels are a relatively new type of towel on the market, and they are steadily becoming a staple in auto detailers garages. They should be used in both your personal garage as well as available from business’ specializing in selling automotive care products.

Other considerations should include the following:

* Size (most car owners prefer a larger towel for drying, and smaller towels for detailing door jambs, wheels, interior parts, etc.)

* Color (some owners stick with certain colors that symbolize what certain towels are used for, ex. red for exterior, blue for exterior, yellow for waxing)

Once you have determined locations for acquiring discounted car detailing towels, have a plan on how to execute your business, and determined which types of towels you would like to sell, you will be able to get your business up and running. Once you have a reputable and profitable business, franchising opportunities may arise, leading to more profits for all your hard work. With proper pricing and providing good products, customers will continue to purchase their towels for car detailing from you.

Automotive Advertising Agencies Need to Reinvent Themselves to Support Social Media

The role of automotive advertising agencies is changing along with the auto industry that they serve. It is important for automotive advertising agencies to educate themselves and their auto dealer clients about their changing roles in a consolidating auto industry that is shifting onto the Internet Super Highway vs. local car rows.

Problems and solution shared at real world venues in the auto industry are having an impact and the slow shift to the new pull/push world of the consumer driven Internet is becoming more obvious. Similarly, a growing number of online social networking communities are also all helping to spread the word and their timing couldn’t be better.

The only constant in the auto industry is change. Of course human nature is also a universal constant, but since that is the fuel that powers most change in the auto industry it must be factored in and considered by automotive advertising agencies who can now look to consumers for the answers.

Radio, T.V. and newspapers are no longer the media of choice for today’s Internet savvy consumers. B2C messages online are filtered out in favor of C2C conversations in social networking communities that now dot the landscape on the World Wide Web. Automotive advertising agencies must reinvent themselves as the resource that auto dealers rely on to navigate them onto the Internet Super Highway because that is where their customers are.

Keeping ahead of new technologies and applications that integrate selling processes between the real and the virtual world showrooms and inserting auto dealers into the conversations that make up the online marketplace must be job one for automotive advertising agencies who wish to serve their auto dealer clients in today’s challenging auto industry. Radio, T.V. and print production has a shrinking role in an automotive advertising agency’s tool box and leveraged online production resources will eliminate them altogether in the near future. Similarly, agency commissions earned from conventional media analysis and placement are being absorbed into the media providers as value added services for their auto dealer advertisers. At the same time, automotive advertising budgets are being shifted to online digital marketing platforms with more verifiable sourced R.O.I. that is far superior to conventional media. The writing is on the virtual wall and automotive advertising agencies must either read it, write it or accept their diminishing value in tomorrow’s auto industry.”

The Internet has empowered consumers to bypass auto dealers and even their most strategically placed marketing message in favor of online information resources that are not dependent on automotive advertising agencies or auto dealers for their content. Initially, third party aggregators captured online auto shoppers attempting to avoid real and virtual world auto dealerships by collecting inventory from hundreds of auto dealers anxious to get their inventory in front of today buyers for new and pre-owned vehicles. Consumers quickly realized the limitations of looking at vehicles in this kind of dealer-centric platform and the technology driven evolution of online marketing platforms soon provided more consumer-centric solutions.

Auto dealers are now able to monetize social media with features that invite car shoppers to share their vehicle selections with their online friends and family to assist them in their car shopping experience. These C2C conversations pushed to Face Book and other social networking communities replace previous unsuccessful attempts by automotive advertising agencies to post B2C messages on the same social media platforms. Automotive advertising agencies need to know about sites that offer a variety of free services and a way to earn a seat at the social media table More relevantly, they need to tell their auto dealer clients about them to justify their agency fees!

Other technology driven applications automotive advertising agencies need to tell their auto dealer clients about that will allow them to sell more vehicles and service for less money and with less staff include dealer hosted personal web sites for their staff, dashboard tools that integrates telephone and SMS text messaging for more comprehensive and cost effective follow up, automated video production platforms that converts the pictures on an auto dealer’s website pushed onto the search engines with Facebook applications that allow an auto dealer to display their entire inventory on a non-offensive tab within the customers Face Book page, customer interaction platforms that allow online shoppers to initiate a two way video conversation from within an auto dealer’s website that can accommodate a turnkey online transaction without having to drop the glass wall that empowers online shoppers to move forward in the negotiation process and appraisal tools which provide site visitors with NADA sourced values for their trade-in while selecting suitable vehicles from the auto dealers online inventory to find a car to replace the one that they are selling.

Any one of these new online conversion and marketing tools can develop a superior R.O.I. to even the best written and placed conventional automotive advertising messages and/or online digital marketing campaigns. These technology driven solutions and their importance to automotive advertising agencies are needed to justify their agency fees to their auto dealer clients in today’s consolidating auto industry. Many automotive advertising agencies still operate under the assumption that if they bring enough bodies to the front door then they have earned their fees. In today’s consolidating auto industry; not so much!

Reduced sales volume and profit margins coupled with increased expenses demand that automotive advertising agencies must increase their areas of responsibility to include internal selling processes using systems to increase efficiencies across all departments in an auto dealership in both their brick and mortar facilities and their newly developing virtual showrooms. You have to be in it to win it and for the foreseeable future the game is being played on the World Wide Web. The most active lanes on the Internet Super Highway are those that lead to social networking communities that share information between automotive advertising agencies and auto dealers as much as they do for their customers.

How to Start a Car Detailing Business

Those who enjoy automobiles may wish to further their passion by opening their very own car detailing business. Those who take pride in automobile ownership also enjoy having their cars clean, especially during the summer months. By starting your own car detailing business you can reach the large population of those who enjoy having a clean vehicle. Once you start this type of business and have a reputable name for yourself, it may be beneficial to extend your services to farther regions by franchising your business.

There are a few items as well as business know-how you must possess before beginning your business. It is very beneficial to have a location that many people drive past every day; this will bring a large amount of attention to who you are and what you do.

If you are not fortunate enough to have a business on the main strip you can advertise in the local paper, hand out flyers, and offer discount coupons to begin your customer base. Once you have your place of business and a good, reliable staff, you will need the following supplies on hand and keep inventory to ensure you don’t run out:

* Cleaning and drying towels/rags

* Wax, paint cleaner

* Soap, water supply

* Various interior and exterior cleaners,

* Brusher for cleaning, and smaller brushes for interior detailing

* Washer and dryer for cleaning

* Enough garage bays to handle multiple vehicle detailing

Keep in mind that in order to operate year round you must have a heated/cooled bay to work in. It can be very difficult for employees to work in a facility that is either too hot or too cold. Although business may be slower during winter months, waxing is important before winter months, you may have “winter” specials in order to increase business during slower months. Your business should offer multiple types of detailing options, as well as self-serve stations as well. Some owners prefer to work on their own vehicles, so having stations for interior vacuuming and exterior cleaning may be profitable is feasible in your situation.

To ensure your car detailing business is profitable you should enlist the help of someone with a good finance/managerial background. This will ensure good money handling, payments are made on time, and that your business is meeting your expectations. This position can either be the owner’s responsibility or part of the manager’s overall duties. To save on costs the owner may also become the manager.

Once business is well established and profitable, as well as known throughout your community, you may find individuals who want to invest in your business. Once franchising opportunities arise you will have to weigh the decision on how much to charge for franchise fees, as well as a weigh your thoughts on how they should conduct business as it relates to your businesses good name.

Car Detailing Business – How to Make More Money Servicing Cars

Car detailers do not only clean cars: they specialize in maintaining the pristine condition of the parts of cars left uncovered by mechanics and auto repair shops. Put another way, car detailing covers the car’s details. It takes proper care of a car’s rugs, upholstery, tires, windows, chrome and paint. From inexpensive cars to luxury vehicles, car detailing has recently blossomed into a potentially lucrative industry, one that a strategic entrepreneur certainly will not ignore.

TIP 1: Start Part-Time.A strong incentive for starting a car detailing business is that it will not require a full time commitment. You can establish yourself by detailing cars during evening and weekend hours. Furthermore, car detailing requires little implementation and few supplies.

TIP 2: Start with your friends and family. Begin this business by providing detailing service to friends and family. Do so from your own driveway or travel to a customer’s home for on-site, customized service.

TIP 3: Get referrals through word of mouth. Have your friends act as a preliminary platform or “sounding board” to find out what customers want or do not want. Put client satisfaction to use by asking your customers to recommend you to friends and colleagues.

TIP 4: Get a Website made, add pictures of your work and market online. While car detailing start-up costs are limited, you will want to invest time and effort in an effective marketing strategy in order to differentiate yourself from your competition. The key is to use the Internet. Establish a simple website outlining your services, and post links to it on Craigslist, online community boards, chat rooms and even blogs. Maintaining your website and increasing its traffic will help search engines such a Google, Yahoo and Bing “find” you. The greater your online presence, the higher your “rank” in search engines, and the easier it is for potential customers to notice you.

A streamlined yet effective marketing strategy, coupled with a commitment to detail-oriented, customized service, will help foster a burgeoning car detailing business into a lucrative and worthwhile endeavour

Training for Car Detailers

Introduction

Be sure you do two things before you even touch a customer’s car:

Learn a set of professional skills, including: the best way to bring engines to like-new, best way to remove carpet and upholstery spots, how to destroy smells, how best to polish as well as wax paint to the point of a better-than-new look, how to get rid of water spots, how to detail “nooks and crannies” (dials, vents, toggles, under seats, etc).

Buy professional gear. Don’t spend too much! There are just a handful of completely necessary items: wet/dry shop-vac, Cyclo polisher and waxer, electric power washing unit, and the all-important air compressor.

Understand professional marketing tactics. Today’s detail business must have good, working relationships with local vehicle businesses (dealers, mechanics, reconditioning shops, and body shops). It must also have a professional, visible website.

There are 3 resources you can find for training as a detailer:

Apprenticeships.
Car Detailing Schools.
Learn from the house.

Let’s take a moment to look closer at your options.

Option 1: Apprenticeship

If you asked me, I’d say that this is the most thorough means of getting the business knowledge. Simultaneously, it is also the toughest to arrange.

It will require that you labor for 6 weeks at an reconditioning shop more than 1 hour from where you live. Contact auto reconditioning shops outside of your area and explain that you want to start your own shop. Be clear that you will NOT be a competitor even if you do happen to be starting a mobile car detailing business. Offer to work at minimum wage or even less in exchange for total immersion in the technical and business workings of their shop.

For the first weeks, you’ll ideally be performing actual detailing: interior, out, and under hoods. You will encounter all the common cases (beverage spills, dog hair, food spots) that drive into a pro shop. You will get much faster at making them clean again as the owner shares his top car detailing tips.

3 weeks into your apprenticeship, you should start to learn the business aspect of the shop: what things to buy, where to get them, how much you should pay for them, how to get your name out there, keys to running a website, how to advertise to dealerships, how to treat customers, how and at what point to run specials, how to handle complaints…all of the plethora of issues that show up at a detail business daily. This portion of your training is far more critical than the first weeks in which you learned the fundamentals of how to detail a car.

At the end of 6 weeks, you should have adequate knowledge to do it on your own. But expect plenty of new issues to come up in the first half year that you will have to confront and succeed at fixing on your own.

On the job training only works – but only if you are ready to drive to a distant shop for 6 long, barely or not paid weeks, and only if you have a shop owner on board. I repeat: you may have to work for nothing (ie, an internship) to get a detail shop owner to agree to this.

Pros: Completely all-encompassing, hands-on learning in a real detail business.

Cons: Very hard to locate a shop owner receptive to training you.

Option 2: Reconditioning Schools

There are lots of detailing schools around the country which specialize in training prospective business owners with formal detailing lectures and seminars:

Detail King – located in PA.
RightLook – based in San Diego, CA.
The Total Pros – based out of L.A., CA.
Detailing Success – located in Big Bear City, CA.

Enroll for 16 hours in training classes, if not more. Be ready to pay at least $1200, including travel costs, and be gone for at least three days. Make sure that you pay for and get adequate marketing training – since it’s marketing-not your ability to do good detail work-which will make or break your business.

I have heard good things about these 4 companies, but at the top seems to be Detailing Success in Big Bear-run by Renny Doyle.

Pros: Doing based learning. Schools offer technical and marketing training from teachers who have done and seen everything there is to see.

Cons: A lot of money. Not a truly real-world experience in which you can learn how to deal with real-world customers and real-world issues (broken tools, irremovable odors, customer troubles, etc.)

Option 3: Learn at Home

There are books and DVDs you can find on Amazon.

Theses books and DVDs offer excellent technical training. They do show you ways in which to detail cars fast and thoroughly. However, they are mostly lacking in marketing training. They’ll cover marketing and sales, in general, however they offer not enough specific advice. For example, they recommend shelling out for phone book advertising. Phone book advertising is all but history in the car detailing business today.

Pros: Price and availability. A truly practical way to use your time and funding.
Cons: Doesn’t have a hands-on component.

Conclusion

How one chooses to train ultimately depends on budget and time availability. There isn’t objectively a right or wrong way to gain the skills needed to run a detailing business.

Here are 2 important pieces of wisdom for new detailers:

No need to overspend on supplies and equipment. It’s possible to do excellent work with only a few items of hardware and chemicals.

The real training will happen in your first 6 months as a detailer, independent of what method you used prior to going into business. Every vehicle is unique. Each customer (along with what they’re looking for) is different. After 6 months you can expect to have gained a whole lot of confidence.