Is Using ‘Quick Detailer’ the Best Way to Keep Your Car Clean Between Washes?

Keeping your car nice and shiny between your regular car washes can be tough, but a “quick detailer” spray can help. Normally, quick detailer sprays are meant for car care maintenance, but can you use them as a quick way to detail a car as well?

What is a quick detailer spray?

A quick detailer spray is a solution that you can use on your car between washes as a fast and easy way to keep it shiny. As Robust Auto Detailing notes, your car has to be relatively clean before using it. And while that sounds counterintuitive, the main point of a quick detailing spray is to enable you to effectively wipe light dust and dirt off your car without having to break out the buckets, hose, and wash mitt.

There are many different quick detailing sprays on the market, most of which use hydrophobic polymer technology to wipe away dust and dirt while giving your car a nice shine. This means that your car will stay looking cleaner for longer and you won’t have to wash it as much.

An employee cleans a car at the luxury automobiles manufacturer Bugatti's headquarters.
An employee cleans a car at the luxury automobiles manufacturer Bugatti’s headquarters. |(Photo by PATRICK HERTZOG / AFP)

How do you use a quick detailer spray?

There’s really only one method when it comes to applying a quick detailer spray to your car’s paint. Here are some simple steps:

  • Spray the quick detailer spray onto a microfiber towel
  • Starting with small sections, wipe the towel on your car with the wet side first
  • Go back over the part that you wiped with the dry side of the towel to buff off the residue
  • Repeat the process until the car is completely covered

As we can see, applying a quick detailer is easier than washing, or even waxing, your car completely. Considering you only have to go over each panel once, you can typically cover your whole car within minutes. This is typically why you’ll see a lot of car owners at car shows wiping their cars down as a last-minute clean-up job.

There are a couple of different ways to use a quick detailer spray

Using a quick detailing spray sounds pretty straightforward, right? It is, but there are actually two different schools of thought when it comes to applying a quick detailer properly. While you can use it in between washes to keep your car looking shiny, some people warn against using this method as wiping any solution onto your car’s paint in a dry fashion, as opposed to it being wet like when washing, can cause scratches.

According to Auto Car HQ, the issue is that quick detailers don’t provide enough lubrication to remove the dust from your car’s paintwork, and when you mix that with an abrasive microfiber towel, you’re essentially grinding the dirt and dust more into the paint, causing swirls. In this school of thought, you should only use a quick detailer after you have washed the car completely in order to prevent scratches, protect the paint, and give it a little more shine.

A detailer sprays Meguair's Quick Detailer onto a car
A detailer sprays Meguiar’s Quick Detailer onto a car | YouTube

Can You Wax Your Car’s Windshield and Windows?

Truthfully, the quick detailing method that you want to use is completely up to you. Most, if not all, quick detailing products give directions to use it in between washes as a quick way to detail your car, so there’s probably some merit to that.