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C O N T E N T S One More Thing . . . Letter to the Editor. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Porsche or Pinto. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Nitty Gritty. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7

We got a dog. His name is Miles. Miles spent the first months of his life in a pen. Miles is awesome. The fact that he is not house-broken is not awesome. Here is a picture of Miles.

Getting to Know Keith Duplessie, IDA board member, patriot and industry enthusiast.

Elbow Grease Boats and Coats. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Business Snapshot . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 An inside look at Firehouse Auto Spa

Events Calendar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Industry News. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 New Business. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Hall of Stains. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 “A lover’s revenge”

Cover Story . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Detail Doctor. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 subhead

Vol. 2, No. 3, Summer 2017 Publisher: Jackson Vahaly Editor: Debra Gorgos Design: Katy Barrett-Alley Auto Detailing News is published 4 times per year and is independently owned by Jackson Vahaly. Web address is www.autodetailingnews.com

All inquiries should be directed to: Auto Detailing News 110 Childs Ln. Franklin, TN 37067 jacksonv@autodetailingnews.com

Letter from the Editor

Isn’t he cute? Right now, as I am typing this, he is sleeping and barking at the same time. He will wake up, bark a few times, then go back to sleep. And, while I do love him, I believe I have spent over $200 on cleaning products. Housetraining is not going well. He is also gnawing on our prized handmade coffee table. We have bought him numerous chew toys, but he just wants to gnaw on the table. I wish there was a detailer who could help us and come to our house and get rid of the “dog odors”. I wish a detailer could come and fix the scratches on our beloved coffee table. I remember when milk was spilled in the backseat of my minivan. Eeks. That smell was horrendous. Whomever said, “do not cry over spilled milk,” did not spill it in a van during humid weather. But, thankfully, I was able to take the van to a detailer who pinpointed the smell, steamed it out and took care of it while I sat in a waiting room watching The Price is Right. I wish I could do the same thing with my home. A house detailer. Hey, maybe I am on to something? Speaking of money-making ideas, I have another one. Upon our first trip to the veterinarian’s I noticed flyers up all over the waiting room. Flyers for fencing companies, flyers for obedience training, flyers for groomers, etc. etc. What I didn’t see was a flyer for a car detailer.

Dogs smell. And they stain and mess up vehicles. So, here’s a good idea: Put your business cards and a flyer up at veterinary clinics. Include a picture of a big, messy, muddy, drooling dog on the flyer and write: We get rid of the dog smells. People love their pets, but boy, do they stink. Did I mention that Miles is awesome? Here’s another picture. In other news, I so grately admire the person featured in this issue’s Nitty Gritty column. Keith Duplessie is one of “those” people. A person who is personable, enthusiastic and inclusive. I first met him when Auto Detailing News was just starting out and I was sent to the 2016 Mobile Tech Expo. I went by myself and I only knew a few people. Keith Duplessie made me feel like I belonged. He gave me great ideas for the magazine. He introduced me to others. He told me about his wife and the house he was working on back in Texas. He made me feel like a part of the detailing community and his absence was felt at the 2017 Mobile Tech Expo when was overseas serving in Kuwait. I had no idea he was in the Texas Army National Guard. But, that’s the thing about Keith, he is a man of many talents. And if you, dear reader, ever have a detailing question or concern, I know Keith will take your call and help you. Please remember to write in with any questions or article requests. If you want to know about something — a new technique, a new marketing tool — let me know and I will take it from there. Also, thanks for your readership and please remember to consider and/or support our advertisers. Because of them, we are able to present this periodical to all of you. Until next time, enjoy the dog days of summer.

Debra Gorgos

Copyright © 2016 2 Dollar Enterprises/Auto Detailing News All Rights Reserved.

VOL. 2, NO. 3 • SUMMER 2017 | AUTO DETAILING NEWS |

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Letter to the Editor

It’s All Fun and Games

Hi Debra,

Porsche or Pinto? It’s no secret that detailers know their cars. But, let’s put the skills to the test.

Can you tell the make and model of each vehicle posted here? Bonus points if you can guess the year as well. Answers are on the bottom of the page. Good luck!

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2

Kenya Williams, MBA

Owner | “Our Shine Just For You” www.ishineforyouautodetailing.com

Editor’s Note: Thank you so much for the kind words, Kenya! Congratulations on finding your passion and on your nomination. Although I have absolutely no idea what a nuclear engineer does on a day-to-day basis, I can see how detailing for a living can be very satisfying!

4. 2016 Honda CRV 3. 2013 Chevy Silverado 2. 2006 Honda Accord 1. 2004 Rav4

Thanks for sharing the awesome news about the detailing industry in your Auto Detailing News paper. I’ve been in business for 3 years (2 years part time) and almost 1 year full time. I quit my 9-5 as a Nuclear Engineer to follow my passion and it’s been an amazing journey. As part of this journey I am part of the IDA, Certified Detailer, Gtechniq Accredited, and now just been nominated as the Best Car Wash in my area. I will be celebrating 1 year at my shop on June 1st in Williamsburg, VA. Just thought I would share...

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VOL. 2, NO. 3 • SUMMER 2017

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Nitty Gritty

Getting to Know...

Keith Duplessie, IDA board member, patriot and industry enthusiast. By Debra Gorgos debrag@autodetailingnews.com

Keith Duplessie is one of the nicest people I have ever met. A man who isn’t afraid to “put it all out there,” he is in many ways a hype man for the detailing industry, enthusiastically championing its growth and wholeheartedly hoping each detailer succeeds. I first met Keith at the 2016 Mobile Tech Expo and within the first 24 hours of knowing him, I saw both laughter and tears. Laughter when he was welcoming and including other detailers at a cocktail reception, making everyone, including

myself, feel like we belonged. And, then crying when he tearfully introduced his friend and mentor Bud Abraham at a standing-room only awards ceremony. The speech he gave for Bud was from the heart, full of gratitude and written with exceptional passion. Those tears were not from sorrow, but from gratefulness. Keith is truly grateful for Bud and grateful to be a part of the detailing industry. And, while Keith intently wears his heart on

What is your full name?

from there and he offered me a position with Detail Plus shortly after that. I’ve been hooked on detailing ever since.

Keith Andrew Duplessie

Where did you grow up? I grew up in both Bangor, Maine, and Portland, Oregon. Our family moved from Bangor to Portland when I was 7 years old.

When and how did you get involved in the car care industry? I started in the car care industry in 2003 when I met Bud Abraham with Detail Plus. He and I attended the same church, and at the annual Octoberfest event the church held (and Bud chaired) I ran into Bud and began working with the committee, our relationship grew

Can you share with our readers what you have been up to in the past year? The past year has been tumultuous and busy to say the least. I decided to leave Big Man Washes in May to pursue other opportunities, which was a big decision, as I had, in part, moved to Texas in 2012 to join them. Little did I know that any future plans and pursuits would be put on hold, as I received orders to deploy to Kuwait with the Texas Army National Guard at the same time. I have been in the Army since 1989, and have been in the Texas Army

his sleeve, there is a lot to him people might not know. In fact, I, too, was completely shocked to find out that just a few months after we met, he was being sent overseas as part of the Texas Army National Guard. His time in Kuwait, a heroic term in which he aided soldiers, did not in anyway diminish his role in the detailing

industry. In fact, even while in Western Asia, he still kept up with the International Detailing Association and was able to deliver a state of the industry address while thousands of miles away. I recently got to interview Keith and find out a bit more about his role in the IDA, the Army and what he is up to today.

National Guard since moving to Texas in 2012. So, I packed my gear, helped my wife Lisa get things ready for me to be gone for a year and hopped a plane to Fort Bliss to join my unit in preparing for a deployment to Kuwait. From July to mid April, I deployed to Kuwait with the 176 Engineer Brigade as the Senior Health Care NCO, supporting the medical needs of the 2200 Soldiers within the Brigade as it worked in multiple countries throughout the CENTCOM Area of Operations. Since returning, Since I have returned, I have been on a bit of a break, but I can announce that as of June 1st I will be working with P&S Sales as it’s Customer Development Specialist working to further the brand globally and enhance

the companies growth here in the states. I am also working on another exciting project in detailing, but that announcement will have to wait for a little bit.

Did you keep up with the people and news of the detailing industry while you were overseas? I absolutely did! Fortunately it was possible to get Internet and phone throughout most of the areas I was working and traveling so I could keep up with social media and text and call. I was even able to VPN in to the IDA Awards and Members meeting to give the state of the industry address. Having that ability to touch base with friends, family and colleagues was continued ...

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I am very optimistic about both it’s evolution and growth. Chemicals, tools and equipment keep evolving, and the results we are capable of achieving with them far exceed what we could have done just 5 years ago.

What kind of message do you want to send to our readers about their role as detailers?

Here Duplessie lunches with Nick Chapman and Mike Raffaele after visiting Nick’s Custom Detailing in Grapevine, Texas.

great. Still, you don’t quite have the full integration into the world you left behind, so I still felt a little disconnected from the industry and all the goings on.

How and when did you get involved with the International Detailing Association? As many people know, Bud helped found the IDA and I was actually there at the first in person exploratory committee meeting for the IDA, before it was even called the IDA back in 2008. After the IDA had been up and running for about a year, I was invited by then IDA President Rick Goldstein to join the board in a position that had been vacated by another board member, and have been on the board ever since. That was in 2009, and I have been lucky enough to serve in multiple capacities over the years.

for anything. It has brought me so much personal and professional growth, and friendships I could not possibly have found without it. I am currently the Board Liaison for the Certification Committee and I sit on the Trade Show and Education Committee. I am also a member of the Founders Club, so I will stay involved with that select group once I leave the Board, and I am sure I will stay involved in some form or fashion moving ahead.

You spoke at the 2016 Mobile Tech Expo about What is it you like about the evolution and growth the detailing industry? I think what I like most about our of the industry — how do you feel about its evolution industry, is that it is made up of so and growth now?

This year will be my last year on the Board of Directors, and it has been a great experience, one I would not trade

many people that are enthusiastic about their craft. We talk so often about how passionate detailers are, and I have to say it is not an exaggeration. I rarely meet detailers that are not excited about what we do. In large part, I think this is because so many of them are owner/operators and are so vested in their business, and their trade. They are always looking to grow, get better, serve their customers better, and their enthusiasm is contagious.

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How are you involved with the IDA today?

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AUTO DETAILING NEWS

Detailers are amazing people! They live and work in a profession where perfecting the appearance of your vehicle is their goal. Imagine that, they pursue perfection every day in all they do, for every customer. How many other professions can you say that about? They chase an ideal, and many of them do so knowing that it probably isn’t achievable in every case. It takes a different kind of person to do that, and not everyone can or would do it. As I said in my state of the industry a few years ago — remember why you got into this business — to pursue that level of excellence you weren’t able to pursue elsewhere and keep striving for perfection. It is what sets us apart.

VOL. 2, NO. 3 • SUMMER 2017

I am very optimistic about both it’s evolution and growth. Chemicals, tools and equipment keep evolving, and the results we are capable of achieving with them far exceed what we could have done just 5 years ago. This innovation is being driven by both large and small companies, and this opportunity to innovate gets me up every day looking forward to what is next. With respect to the

operators, there are so many new ways to serve customers through improved service experiences and services themselves. The Internet makes it possible to reach more customers, in more ways, and be so much more efficient in providing the consumer an “experience” as opposed to just a service. Then adding in the array of product offerings, like coatings, aftermarket add-ons, and customization, the opportunities seem limitless. Consumers are more and more seeing what can be done to their cars and vehicles and they want that. They also are seeing the value it adds and beginning to understand the level of expertise it takes to achieve this. Now, more than ever before, customers know the value of what we do, and are more prepared to pay it. Another evolution is the way the industry has started to come together. There is more sharing and collaboration between detailers than ever before, and I think this coming together will only benefit all of us.

What are some of the biggest challenges facing detailers today? I think they are some of the same ones we have faced for years — finding customers who know and value our services, although, as I mentioned, I think this is changing. Another challenge that is new is picking just what products and services to offer. I encourage all detailers to find suppliers that service and support them in the success of their business. It has been my experience that


Fellow detailers gather with Duplessie at the IDA booth during the 2014 Mobile Tech Expo.

the best providers are those that want to see you succeed, not just buy their products. This is true of the operator too, you need to be the same way with your customers. There is so much out there, and such a large variety of providers of these products. My advice is, to chose those services that fit your core business, both who you are now (what you offer and do for services now) and what you want to be. Finding your niche and how you can excel has long been difficult, and it takes some self examination. We would all love to only detail exotic cars, but is that who you are now? If not, how are you going to get there? Sometimes continued ...

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you need to embrace what you do now and be the best at that. The market is often larger than we think and it is challenging to identify where each segment is, and how to reach it and profit from it.

What advice do you have for detailers who are facing setbacks?

thing is to find like-minded professionals in and out of our profession to use as a sounding board and feedback team. They will see things you don’t, and sometimes in a brutal way, but if you are open to it, it can make you better.

Is there anything about you that might surprise It sounds cliché, but you must learn our readers? Or any from your setbacks. On my current special talents?

Duplessie and friend Tom Palancia of Simoniz.

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deployment, I worked with a surgeon, that in the states is an Ear, Nose, and Throat surgeon, and said it more eloquently than I can. His advice: “Feedback is a gift, take it as such and use it to learn.” All failure and success is feedback. Take it as such and analyze how that setback came about and what you need to change or do differently. At the same time if you can’t find what went wrong, don’t give up on yourself, and keep ploughing forward. A really helpful

Believe it or not, as much as I travel and as much as I love to get out and see everyone in our industry, I am a bit of a homebody. [My wife] Lisa and I have worked very hard on our house and home, and whenever I can be home, I enjoy just being around the house having out with her and working on little projects. I don’t know how much of a talent it is, but I enjoy doing woodworking projects when I get the chance to be home.


ELBOW GREASE

Boats and coats By Debra Gorgos debrag@autodetailingnews.com

For most of the country, boating season is upon us and boat owners are looking for detailers who can make their vessels shine. According to John Lakkis, who has been in the global automotive and marine markets for 23 years and started Hula Boat Care in 2011, the exterior of fiberglass boats are subjected to a harsh environment whether it is environmental or biological and boat detailing is essential. “Fiberglass is a porous material and therefore it is easy for this substrate to be effected by contaminants,” says Lakkis. On top of that, according to a 2013 LiveScience report, a majority of waterways in the United States are polluted.

“The extent of pollution and degradation in our waterways is alarming. Two decades ago, the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) found that 36 percent of the waterways they monitored were in poor condition,” stated the report. “...In the time since, monitoring has expanded and we now know that a startling 55 percent of monitored waterways in the United States are impaired by pollution.” And that pollution can cause major damage to a boat’s surface. But, boat detailers can save the day and save a boat from deterioration.

Boat nemeses According to Lakkis, “Depending on where you are in the country the water a boat goes on will vary and have a variety of different minerals.”

Most boats, says Lakkis, are effected by hard water spots caused by: • Lime • Calcium, and • Salts While other boats are effected by iron and minerals from mud that stain the fiberglass. And let’s not forget about mold, mildew and algae which can also penetrate fiberglass making staining the surface.

Cleaning methods In most cases there are a few methods for cleaning fiberglass depending on the cause of the stain, according to Lakkis. The time needed to remove these stains depends on the severity of the stain and the condition of the fiberglass. Those methods include:

 Hand wash + bleach: Surfaces with mold and mildew are usually washed down with a bleach solution and then polished to restore the finish.  Muriatic acid: Surfaces with algae growth below the water line are usually removed from the water and washed with muriatic acid to kill the growth.  Descaling + polishing: Surfaces with heavy lime and calcium build up are cleaned with a descaling chemical the polished to restore the finish.  Power wash + compound: Surfaces with iron and mud are usually power washed and compounded to remove the contaminants.

continued ... VOL. 2, NO. 3 • SUMMER 2017 | AUTO DETAILING NEWS |

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Finishing steps Once the fiberglass is cleaned then compounding and polishing are needed to remove oxidized fiberglass and restore the gloss, says Lakkis. “There are several products on the market that are widely available and it is always suggested to use marine grade formulations as they are designed for fiberglass and the environment they would be in.” Once the fiberglass is restored then protecting the surface will assist in slowing down the return of stains and oxidation. It is recommended to use a synthetic polymer sealant to fill the fiberglass’ porous surface in order to make it difficult for contaminants to penetrate the surface. Another option that is more costly would be to use a product like a ceramic coating.

This 27’ Formula 271 FASTech was detailed at The Shop Automotive Detailing in Rotterdam, New York. The boat, which goes out on Lake George in the Adirondacks every summer, was detailed over two days. Paint correction (using a highspeed buffer) was done on day one and a ceramic coating was applied on day two.

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TECHNICALLY SPEAKING What is fiberglass anyway? Well, according to wiseGEEK.com, fiberglass is, “material containing thin fibers of glass formed into a woven layer or used as reinforcement.” Trademarked by the Owens Corning company in 1938 as a form of home insulation called Fiberglas, and the material when mixed with resins is what is used on vehicles. According to the book, “Heart of Glass: Fiberglass Boats and the Men Who Built Them,” by Dan Spurr, the very first fiberglass boat came out in 1942. The book, written by Dan Spurr, states, “Ray Greene rolled out his first crude fiberglass-reinforced polyester (FRP) dinghy, thus firing the opening shot in a revolu-

tion that, over the next two decades. The boat would transform boating from an elitist pastime into a democratic institution enjoyed by hundreds of thousands. According to materialstoday.com, “The first fiberglass yacht was probably the Arion, a 42 ft Herreshoff-designed ketch that appeared in 1951.” Fiberglass boats also debuted in Europe around the same time. A Tod 12-foot dinghy premiered in 1951 from W&J Tod using a crystic polyester resin. Scott Bader “is credited as having been the first, though it was run close by a Flying Twenty sailboat produced in 1952” following a meeting “between Isle of Wight-based designer Uffa Fox and Patrick de Laszlo, founder of the Halmatic company.”

Don’t forget! Only use marine-grade products when detailing boats as they will not harm marine life.

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Business Snapshot Business Name:

Firehouse Auto Spa Name of Owner: Mark Elliott Jr. Location: Jacksonville, Florida Years in Operation: approx. 5 years

1. What kind of a business is it and what services does it offer? It is an auto detailing business. We offer ceramic coatings, window tinting, Xpel paint protection film, windshield repair, and auto detailing 2. Is there a lot of competition in the area? If yes, what do you do to stand apart from the competition? Yes, I think our certifications and our passion separate us from our competition. 3. How many people work for you? 2 full time, 1 part time 4. How do you keep your employees motivated? We keep them motivated by working right beside them to let them know we work as hard as them. We also just have fun at work and at the end of the day it doesn’t feel like work. We also provide state of the art equipment to make the jobs easier and efficient. We’d rather our employees work smart not hard. Gives them a chance at the end of the day to go home and enjoy the family. 5. What are your hours?

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Generally 9-6 Monday thru Friday and Saturdays 9-4. But, everything is scheduled and we rarely take walk ups. When a customer’s car is in our shop we like all the attention on that vehicle. 6. What ways do you advertise your business? Social media, we sponsor local car clubs and shows, and we have a website. 7. What type of clientele do you have? It varies. 8. What plans are in store for the business? Eventually plan on opening a state of the art hand wash - detailing center. 9. What is the best advice you have for other detailers in terms of what not to do when detailing a car? Never over promise and under deliver. 10. How many cars do you service a year? 5-600 really hard to say. 11. What is the most often requested service? Express detail, window tinting 12. Does your business have a motto or slogan? “Pamper your car with a day at the Spa”

VOL. 2, NO. 3 • SUMMER 2017 | AUTO DETAILING NEWS |

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EVENTS CALENDAR

Industry

News

2017 NORTHEAST REGIONAL CARWASH CONVENTION OCT 2-4

Atlantic City Convention Center Atlantic City, New Jersey www.nrccshow.com

2017 SEMA SHOW OCT 31-NOV 3

Las Vegas Convention Center Las Vegas, Nevada And for those who like to plan well ahead, dates have been announced for the next three shows as well, although the locations of the shows have not been released: • 2018 SEMA Show: Oct 30-Nov 2 • 2019 SEMA Show: Nov 5-8 • 2020 SEMA Show: Nov 3-6 www.semashow.com

2018 MOBILE TECH EXPO JAN 25-27

Caribe Royale Orlando Orlando, Florida www.mobiletechexpo.com

AUTOGEEK’S 2018 DETAIL FEST & CAR SHOW MARCH 17 & 18

Palm Beach County Convention Center West Palm Beach, Florida www.autogeek.net/detail-fest.html

THE 2018 CAR WASH SHOW™ APRIL 26-28

Las Vegas Convention Center Las Vegas, Nevada www.carwash.org/thecarwashshow

In the News Mobile Tech Expo bought by ConvExx Las Vegas-based ConvExx, a show management company for the auto aftermarket industry, acquired the Mobile Tech Expo from its founder Kevin Halewood, the Trade Show News Network reported. “Mobile Tech Expo is the premier showcase for the paintless dent repair, detailing and automotive mobile service industries, and we look forward to continuing that mission,” ConvExx CEO Chuck Schwartz said in the story. “We understand and appreciate the Show’s principles, and look to build upon what has been built as we strive to best serve the mobile automotive aftermarket.” Halewood, will remain as the Mobile Tech Expo show director. The 2018 Mobile Tech Expo will be

held next year on January 26-28 at the Caribe Royale in Orlando, Florida. “I am truly excited about the future of Mobile Tech Expo,” Halewood said in the story. “Building this event to its current height has been my life for the past 18 years, and I look forward to the future. With the resources and experience of ConvExx, we will now be able to deliver even more value and opportunity than ever before and ultimately help the industry I care so deeply for, and grow it even more.” ConvExx also will be responsible for publishing Mobile Tech News and Detailers Digest.

Car cleaning app gets $1.2M in seed money Blink My Ride, an app that offers on-demand car washing and detailing

services, raised $1.2 million in seed money, a Forbes Middle East story reported. The June 1 story said the Beirut-based company was backed by Phoenician Funds, a venture fund firm out of Lebanon. “[We’ll use the money] mostly to get to a certain number of active users in Beirut and expand in Doha and launch in Dubai for the next 18 months,” Blink My Car COO Ralph Choueiri said in the story. Choueiri said they might look to expand into Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. The startup company “went live in January 2016 following a $350,000 angel investment by Al Amir Holdings, and is active in Doha and Beirut,” the story said. It was also one of 60 finalists from the Middle East and North Africa region in Facebook’s Bots for Messenger Challenge.

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Now Open for Business Salt Lake City, Utah — Professional detailers in Salt Lake City need to take note that a Detail Garage, which provides DIY-detailers with supplies and education, opened here in June, according to a press release. The franchise, which also has six locations in California. “Detail Garage offers premium quality auto detailing and car care products such as soaps, waxes, cleaners, equipment and accessories and also offers education. Detail Garage stores aim to educate and help people find solutions to their problems. Aside from the great assistance you will receive from the knowledgeable staff, each Detail Garage location hosts their own Do-It-Yourself style courses to assist people on the proper way of taking care of their vehicles,” stated the press release. The press release stated that The Detail Garage franchise is planning to open

many more stores across the country in the upcoming months. Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin — Too Clean Car Wash and Detailing opened in Prairie du Sac on May 5, The Eagle reported. Owner Mike Brown said he had been wanting to own such a business for years, but struggled to find the perfect location. That is until Brown met George and Jennifer Urban agreed to allow him to rent two of their bays at their Midway Oil location. Brown said his business philosophy is: “Treat people the way you would want to be treated, and they will come back.” Too Clean offers a full array of ” interior and exterior hand wash and detailing services for vehicles, in addition to waxing, buffing, carpet and upholstery cleaning, vacuuming and tire dressing — even underbody work,” the story said.

Effingham, Illinois — The Dan Hecht Chevrolet-Toyota of Effingham is expanding by 15,000 square feet and will soon be offering more room for detailing services, the Effingham Daily News reported. The May 25 story said the expansion should be completed by Christmas. Jim Hecht, general manager, said in the story, “The project will include an expansion of about 10,000 square feet to the main showroom dealership and about 5,000 square feet to the body shop.” Hecht said it will be expanding by two or three people in the detailing department. “We’re pretty excited,” Hecht said in the story. “Next year we’ll be celebrating our 60th year in business. It’s important to know that we’ve been able to grow because of good employees, good customers and customer satisfaction.”

Riverside, Pennsylvania — Big E’s Car Wash and Detailing of Riverside opened her in May, The Daily Item reported. Now owned by Walter Evans who bought the business when it was called Big A’s. Manager Nate Conrad said they have “been doing good for a new business,” according to the story. “So far, we have had vehicles from Geisinger and Service 1st,” Evans said. Big E’s takes all sizes of vehicles including school buses, cars, SUVs, campers, trucks and vans. Detailing services offered include full detailing, washing and waxing only and interior only.

where it debuted its flexible and versatile rollover, a March 30 press release stated. The FLEX5 is adaptable and switches from three to five brushes (and vice versa). It offers friction only (brush wash), hybrid (incorporating high pressure to friction for a thorough wash) and combined function (with a choice between the above options or a completely touchless wash using high pressures and chemical prewashes only). A new tire-shiner for tunnels and rollovers called the T’Shiner also debuted. ISTOBAL also announced in the press release that Ian Burton will served as the new North American Director of Sales. “In this position, he will be responsible for further developing sales, customer service, and nurturing direct sales

relationships. As a key member of the management team, Burton will develop and execute new strategies and initiatives that expand distributor and brand penetration in North America,” the press release stated. Burton most recently worked at PD McLaren Limited, Canada. “Ian’s career includes over 20 years in the Vehicle Wash Industry. He brings a diverse background from both a manufacturer and distributors perspective that makes him the perfect candidate. We look forward to Ian’s arrival at such a vital time when ISTOBAL is seeing consistent growth in North America” explained ISTOBAL USA, CEO, Jimmy Sisk.

Business Briefs ISTOBAL announces new sales director, products and 2016 sales numbers Valencia, Spain-based ISTOBAL announced in a press release that the company totaled, “124 million euros in 2016, 5% more than in 2015.” Currently, the company’s top five markets are France, Palm Beach County Convention Center Italy, the United States, Denmark and the United Kingdom. The company stated it will focus on its U.S., German and Middle Eastern markets in 2017. “The evolution of sales in Italy is remarkable, with a 90% increase versus the

previous year following the consolidation of ISTOBAL Italy and thanks to a strong distributor network,” stated the April 10 press release. “In Denmark, sales rose almost by 50% while in Britain and the United States, sales increased by 40% and 30% respectively, compared to the previous year.” In 2017 ISTOBAL will continue implementing its expansion plan, seeking to make the most of the company’s potential for growth in the US, where its presence is already strong with commercial vehicles and with a growing market share in the car dealers’ sector, the press release also stated. In other ISTOBAL news, the company exhibited at the April 2017 Car Wash Show in Las Vegas

Do you know of a new detailing business that has opened recently? Do you have news to share or an upcoming event? Send all information and press releases to Debra Gorgos at debrag@autodetailingnews.com and we will list the news here in the Spring 2017 issue.

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continued ...


Malco Products offers up six new products Barberton, Ohio-based Malco Products announced the debut of six new products including: The EPIC™ Paint Correction System, Leather Protectant, Ready Shine, Hi-Shine, Stick Tight Spray Adhesive and Mat Clamps, the company stated in two March press releases. “Malco has always been committed to bringing our valued customers a broad range of high quality cleaning and detailing products” said Seth Glauberman, vice president of sales and marketing. “We’ve long been considered a leader in professional detailing products. The products we’re launched today are great additions to our detail line, filling a need our customers have been asking about.” Leather Protectant is available in 32oz. and one-gallon sizes, Ready Shine is available in one-gallon, 5-gallon and

55-gallon sizes, Hi-Shine is available in a 12-oz. size, Stick Tight Spray Adhesive comes in a 13.25-oz. size. The EPIC™ Paint Correction offers fewer steps, the press release stated. “At Malco, we’ve listened to our customers and we know they don’t always have the time to correct a finish in three steps. And they’re looking for risk-free solutions they can be confident in,” Glauberman stated. “That’s why we’ve created something EPIC – an all-encompassing system that caters to everyone from production to high-end detailers.”

Griot’s Garage debuts new finishing paper The BOSS Finishing Paper by Griot’s Garage of Tacoma, Washington, delivers fast defect correction while imparting minute sanding marks that easily buff out during normal polishing, according to an

April 26 press release. “Exceptional in durability, the silicon carbide abrasives in Griot’s Garage BOSS Finishing Paper removes above and below surface paint defects like dirt nibs, dust, paint texture/orange peel, runs, and sags following paint refinishing,” the press release stated. BOSS Finishing Paper can also be used for removal of severe defects prior to paint correction on OEM finishes.

Car Brite™ introduces new line of painted surface care products Lexington, Kentucky-based Car Brite, introduced its new Cutting Compound, Polish and Sealer Wax, according to a May 22 press release. “We recognize that many dealerships are apprehensive about having inexperienced employees buffing. That’s why we created this line up of products,” said mar-

Industry

News

keting director Todd Mason. “This new offering is simple, easy-to-use, and there is no experience required. Plus, it will open the door to opportunities for dealerships to offer painted surface care restoration, a huge value-add to the consumer.” The products are also low-dust and silicone-free. Car Brite also now offers 6.5” buffing pads. The foam pads are color coordinated with the product to help ensure proper use. The neutral lamb’s wool pad broadens the performance spectrum of the compound and polish if needed.

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Industry

News

Autogeek’s 12th annual

Detail Fest & Car Show

took place March 18th & 19th at Palm Beach County Convention Center in West Palm Beach, Florida.

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Photos provided by Jim Goguen of Jim’s Auto Installations & Detailing Center of Ipswich, Massachusetts.

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Stain Horror Stories:

“A lover’s revenge”

Hall of Stains

Chances are, as a detailer you have probably seen pretty horrible messes. Pigment, odors, or just plain grossness can turn stomachs and perhaps even make you wish you were doing something else for a living. This section is dedicated to those horror stories and will share the tales of the really bad spills and stains that took special treatments and extra man hours to eradicate.

The Survivor: Adrian Olteanu

The Victim: 2012 Camaro

The Ammo:

Spraypaint, a screwdriver

The Horror Story: Over the years I had the pleasure of detailing many neglected and very dirty interiors, however, this year one interior gave me the run for my money. I received a call from a good friend of mine who was looking to bid on a 2012 Camaro that had been spray painted out of spite. He asked me if I can do something about the exterior and I told him that I got him covered. I spoke too soon. After he obviously won the auction bid and brought the car home. He asked me to come see it. When I saw it, I backed up 2 feet, scratched my bald head and raised my eyebrows. The car was a million times worse than what the picture showed. The whole interior and exterior were spray-painted with orange and gray spray paint. There were

misspelled obscenities, carved with a screwdriver, all over the hood and doors of the car. Surely there was nothing I could have done about the exterior so I had to get it re-painted by a professional. The interior was covered in 90% orange paint and 10% gray paint. The paint was absorbed in the grain of the leather and plastic and almost every crevice and crease of the interior was covered in paint. Places like air-conditioning ducts, LCD screen, door panel pockets, dashboard trims and the center console had it worse.

interior and I wish that every professional detailer gets to experience this at least once

The Recovery Process: I worked on it for 5 days straight using different products starting from the least aggressive method of APCs and working my way into light solvents and other solutions. I used no less than 50 Costco rags and about 10 different brushes and tools to get the job done.

The Aftermath: I am glad that I had the opportunity to work on this project so I can understand what it takes to battle and win a spray-painted

Have you survived a tale of horror? If so, please send your story to Debra Gorgos at debrag@autodetailingnews.com.

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in their life.


IDA

The IDA is saving you a spot! Become a member, get certified, or join an international Chapter! The International Detailing Association (IDA) has always endeavored to grow and evolve with the needs of our members. As the only independent association created for and dedicated to the professionals of the detailing industry, we offer a variety of membership options so you can choose the one that best fits your or your business. No matter your member type, you will receive an amazing member discount on all levels of IDA certification courses. You can complete your Certified Detailer course online at your leisure or you can sign up for a ‘CD-in-a-Day’ class that fits your schedule. As an association with international membership, the IDA has put much thought and effort into creating more accessible and inclusive programs for members who are located outside the North American region. The IDA is

proud to have launched an international Chapters program to better serve our far-flung members. Allowing for Chapters of the IDA to form across the globe will provide our international members with access to IDA-sponsored or IDA-attended events in their own region: certification events, expos and tradeshows, ‘IDA Meet-&-Greets’, and more. The international Chapters program was initiated in March of 2016 and has been gaining momentum ever since.

In November of 2016, our very first Chapter application was approved, and IDA welcomed the UK Chapter to the fold. Our second Chapter, Norway, was approved in February of 2017! The IDA hopes to add at least three more international Chapters by the end of the year. Congratulations to the UK and Norway as they continue to work towards the set-up and operations of their new Chapters! Not a member of the IDA? We’re saving a spot for you at www.the-ida. c o m / m em b er s h i p -ty p es ( o r c a l l 651-925-5526). You can learn more about certification by visiting www. the-ida.com/certification. Find out more about Chapters by emailing info@ the-ida.com.

MEMBERSHIP OPTIONS: Operator: Do you detail cars, boats, or planes? Do you own your own detailing business, or operate a mobile detailing unit? This is the membership for you! Supplier: Are you a part of a business that manufactures, supplies, or distributes products used by detailers? Or are you a consultant to the detailing industry? This is the right fit for you! Student: Are you currently enrolled in an accredited school or institution that provides automotive restoration courses (company-sponsored training programs do not count)? This membership category has student-discounted dues, just for you! Institutions: Are you a part of an accredited school or university that provides automotive restoration courses? Your membership is complimentary!

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Not ever collector needs a detailer (but they will have questions). This owner likes many things Italian, including his Rupes polishers. Shown here is a E24 M6 that Antonino perfected and protected using some of the newest products and procedures our industry has to offer. He continues to save and perfect more than a car a year.

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: e l u R t Firstalk about don’t

, B U L C T H BRIG until now...

Collection Detailing How to get into this exclusive and mysterious club of car enthusiasts. By Eric Joseph Ericjoseph@Gtechniq.com

Car collections, outside of dealerships may be the largest concentration of high value paint, metal and glass in one building. To some detailers, car collections are a dream, a desire and a goal, but to others who have corrected the paint and polished the chrome, it can be an absolute nightmare. You know you want to be there, doing what you love and showing the world what you are made of (I mean come on, you’re with a few million dollars’ worth of cars). The real question is, are you ready for it?

Collection detailing is not as easy as some would think. There is massive amounts of communication and organization involved. It is a big risk with huge potential, yet industry stories are usually that of failure. What is it about car collections that break down even the strongest of detailers? Hopefully after reading this story, you are ready to hunt down and turn a collection someone else failed on into the work of art that it is.

Step One:

Before the Find

Before you find your first collection to shine up let’s get some things out of the way. Most, if not all, of the collections I have stepped foot in are

owned by professionals; Individuals or groups of individuals who know their businesses front and back as well as their automobiles. So, question one is, do you know yours? When potential customers look you up, what do they find? Are you insured? Are you a member of the IDA? Are you certified or accredited by a manufacturer? What do your reviews say by actual customers who potential customers can talk to? Take a step away and look at your business from the outside. If you had $250,000 in cars, would you want your business to work on them. Get your branding, appearance and reputation right and proceed to read.

A view from the back corner of one of the world’s best Mopar collections. Bob is a nationally known Mopar Collector currently working on cars built and sold in his hometown of Rochester, NY. His latest addition an early 1900’s Cunningham hearse.

Step Two:

The Find

Car collections are all over the country, all different shapes and sizes. The best advice I can give here is to get involved in the multiple automotive communities and network. This is where our passion as detailers really gives us an edge. If you love Porsches and fine wines, find the local PCA (Porsche Club of America) and get involved. If a big smoky burnout while screaming “‘MERCA” is more your style, find the local hot rod club. Sponsor a car/bike show, but stay focused and put in the work. I have had more success with a professional presence and being a resource at these continued ...

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The view from when the lights go one of the Rochester Auto Museum. This collection is moving onto Main Street for all to enjoy. Visit rochesterautomuseum.com/ for more information.

It’s the history that makes some of these cars amazing. Who drove them, what movie they were in and what publications they have made the cover of. These are the things to know when you want to be the professional who cares for them.

Most collections do not stop with the automobiles. Artwork, signage and other memorabilia from the chosen eras normally adorn the walls and cabinets. This collection is currently moving, in its new home the cars will be teamed up with its matching artwork.

events than in trying to book jobs or sell product. One of the keys to nailing down a collection is trust. Set up demos and show the group what a professional detailer really is. Do this right and the collection may find you. So, you have sponsored some car shows and are convinced it’s a big waste of time. The only guy who talked to you wanted you to fix the failed clear coat on his 1998 Neon. The collectors saw you, they saw your name, and they saw your logo (see step one if you do not have a logo). It is up to you to now get out and knock on doors. When you see a 1960 Corvette in the local body shop, go inside and show an interest. Talk

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to the shop owner and the painter. For example, while getting gas there is a guy in a 1971 Cuda. It may not be a Hemi but go talk to him. You have to ask the questions and get comfortable talking to professional car owners. Remember we are trying to build trust here. Take the time to get to know the people and don’t make the communication based around a sales pitch. The guy in the ripped t-shirt and dirty sweatpants may be a millionaire with 45 dirty collectable cars in a building. You never know.

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Step Three:

First Steps in the Door

Congratulations, you did it. After two years of hard work, branding and networking you have the chance. The body shop guy who helped out on a project took a liking to you and passed your name onto a collector buddy of his. They looked you up, asked around and they like what they saw and heard. Now they call and it’s time to meet them. Are you nervous? Go in there, tell them their paint is swirled and offer them an “unobtrusive” paint correction and the world’s

best and newest nano wax-force field coating. There is a good chance they will look at you like you are insane and magically answer the phone that may not have rang. After you realize you got kicked out, find this issue and start from the top of the story. Long and short of it, be humble. If you have an ego leave it at home. Pay attention to what drives the collector, what it is that is important to them? Is he/she into the history, the performance or the hunt? Are the cars driven, do they see the track? Try to pick up on what the owner really wants. I am not saying to turn off your salesman because without sales you will be out of business. And please, let continued ...


Gear Garage owner Antonino Barbagallo standing with a few of his BMW’s. Behind him a Canadian E28 M5 with a Korman Stroker 3.8l 380hp NA motor. The story with this car should be an article by itself. Step into Antonio’s world by visiting fotoab.com

The Gear Garage Lounge is a work of art in itself. Such a great place to talk detailing and other car business.

A vintage M6 saved by Antonino. Modern methods and traditional machine work brought this original finish back to life. After some wet sanding and 3 stages of polishing the paint was protected with Gtechniq Crystal Serum Light.

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them talk. Each time I step foot into a collection and meet with an owner half my day is gone. Find out when they are receiving their next delivery or event. Kindly find a way to invite yourself and be on time. Work on the balance of personal relationship and business. It can be tricky.

Step Four:

The Non-Formulaic Way to Success

We have many roads that lead to similar results with detailing. The bad news is, there is no formula to follow when it comes to collection detailing (at least not one I have found). After building trust and getting to know

the owner you should have the level of comfort to start working on one of their cars, trucks, bikes or planes. Figure out the logistics. Collections are housed in every and any kind of structure. Underground parking garages, airplane hangars, warehouses and epic “man/woman caves”. Some of these buildings are worth more than what is inside, some have dirt floors. That does not mean they are set up to allow for quality, efficient detailing. Below are some things you should consider before proceeding. 1. Electricity: Do you have the necessary outlets, extension cords etc. to do the job? Does the structure have power needed to run your lighting, polishers and vacuum? 2. Water: Yeah you need it to survive but you also need it to wash things. Where is the hose connection? Do you need to

soften the water? Is there a legal floor drain or do you need to take your gray water with you?

What does that new potential customer see when they walk in the door?

3. Supplies/equipment: Have you sourced the correct chemicals for the job? The last thing you want to do is damage something on the car or stain the floor of the building. Make sure you have everything with you. Leaving for an hour and coming back may not be an option. Do you have a paint thickness gauge and is the paint original or a recent base/ clear restoration?

5. Off Site Setting: If the location that houses the unicorn is completely not suitable for the job, the job needs to come to you. Before driving or taking possession of anything, make sure you are 100% insured for the replacement value of the vehicle. It is not a bad idea to contact a lawyer and get some sort of agreement on paper. There is nothing wrong with a 2014 Camry but if something goes wrong the system is usually in place to fix it. If a light falls and breaks the sunroof of a 1965 Unicorn Turbo, you may be out of business.

4. Organization: Remember back to the start of this story. You are dealing with professional owners. Is your presentation on point? Do you have the carts and tables needed? The owner will likely bring in another collector to check out what you are doing.

6. Pre-detail Inspection. Buy a camera. Photo, video and continued ...

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Collection owner Bob Bartosiewicz standing with one of his top cars “Sno-White” a 1971 Plymouth Cuda convertible. Fun fact, the 1971 Fiat Spyder 124 in the back corner is what started the automotive love for Bob.

When setting up at a car show or a collector’s event make sure you have many “conversation pieces”. Here you see a tablet playing a loop of videos, business cards and even a Lake Country pad that is asking to be picked up.

photo again. If you are moving something, have someone video it. Document, Document, Document. Slow everything down, turn off your phone and inspect. You may be responsible for a one-of-kind $4 million vehicle. If you are not comfortable with any part of the situation, don’t do it. This is only going to help build trust. Compile a report for the owner. Maybe they look at it, maybe they don’t. You may get a call in a year telling you they sold the car and would like to take you to dinner (in the Bahamas) because your report netted them some serious coin. Hopefully at this point you are as excited as you are nervous. Collection detailing will do that. To ease some of these emotions, below you will get an insight into the three different types of collectors. When you get a second, game plan how you would approach each of them.

The Investor Its dark and the one-way street bordering downtown has no one on

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it. To the right a garage door is open and the light of the garage pours out showing a checker board floor. You look in and a tall man in a suit is smoking a cigar admiring an army of beautiful rare Mopars. You wait at the threshold until he sees you. His arm goes up waving you inside as he greets you and offers a tour. Many, if not all, of the cars in the collection are top level cars. An hour later you have learned more about Four Speed Hemi cars than one could ever dream of. As you leave he hands you a flier for a cars and coffee event he hosts. Years collecting: 8 Cars in collection: Averages 25 Source: Mix of higher profile auction and private sale. Detailing need: Problem solving, general maintenance. Fun fact: Purchased back the first car ever owned a 1971 Fiat Spyder 124.

The Enthusiast A driver first, owner second. If you enter the collection from the front you will notice a mix of uber rare BMW M cars with a sprinkle of Turbo GM. |

VOL. 2, NO. 3 • SUMMER 2017

Neon signs of all vintage hang on the walls and the fox body convertible is a 7-Up. Enter from the back and the shifter carts grab your eye. This owner hosts, organizes and attends more events than anyone I know. His cabinets are stocked with some of the newest detailing products on the market and on the bench his trusty RUPES polisher. Years collecting: 20+ Cars in collection: 20 Source: Networkingj/brokering. Detailing need: In-depth paint correction and product/ process recommendation. Fun fact: Still owns the first car ever purchased. A 1978 Chrysler Cordoba.

The Insider We have all heard it before, “treat me right buddy, I have friends”. Now what if this customer actually did have a “friend”? Let’s take one step further and you come to find out that this friend has an amazing collection and another one of your customers is also friends with the collector. Now this collector is different. He is very

private. The cars are at this house, with his family. When you finally put two and two together to make four you schedule a meeting with him. You find out he’s been burned before by a detailer, pun intended. You build trust and respect his privacy and you are now his detailer. Each car in the building has a story and an edge. The Neon is an ACR and runs 12’s and the Daytona coupe is signed by Carol. There is no one around to show off too, but the quite setting is nice. Years collecting: 20+ Cars in collection: 20 Source: Self/Networking Detailing need: Once a year maintenance details. Fun fact: Once shipped a Ferrari that had fluids drained and hung vertical for space savings over seas.

Eric is the Director of Wholesale Operations and trainer for Gtechniq USA. He has been detailing for 20 years, is an IDA Registered Trainer and served as the Chairperson for the Trade show and Education Committee of the IDA last year. Eric has done many presentations and talks for the industry specifically in profitability and expanding services.


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DETAIL DOCTOR

Pricing and the Auto Detail Business By Bud Abraham, buda@detailplus.com

Often requested to write in how to price detail services this article will present my ideas on detail service pricing and how to calculate a detail business hourly shop rate. Keep in mind these are my strictly opinions, gained as the operator of two high-profile detail centers for years, and setting up hundreds of people in the detail business all over the world.

In the USA or Thimphu, Bhutan, the principles of good business are the same and the principles of operating a successful detail business are the same around the world. While many would like to believe their area of the world is “different”, or their customers are different, etc, etc., it is an excuse for not knowing what to do or if knowing, not willing to change. As you read this article remember this one important factor: “Price is Never an Obstacle Unless YOU Make it One.”

Posted vs. Estimate Pricing In seminars I conduct I always ask whether the detail business owners offer

posted prices or estimate prices. Everyone has a reason, right or wrong, for their opinion and I respect that opinion. However, I do not agree with those who posted prices. Why? Let me give you a simple, and to the point example that I personally experienced a few years back while working in my own detail centers. One location was across the driveway from a very large and busy full service automatic car wash that would wash 500-800 cars on a Saturday. The cars would line up and you could see the drivers looking over at our 4 bay/1 wash bay detail building in a very busy “auto mall.” We had excellent signing on the front of the building indicating our name: DETAIL PLUS Car Appearance Centers in the center

and on each side a listing of some of the more common services we offered. When the customers placed their order at the car wash, some would get out of their car and walk over to the detail center. What I noticed with these customers was the following: • Some would look in the window at the price menu board and then walk away. • Some would come into the customer service area and read the price menu board and then walk away (even when I said, “can I help you?” • Some would ask for a price menu (which we had at that time with posted prices) and then walk out. This went on a lot and I said to myself, “why is this happening, I do not even get a

chance to talk to the customers, they just look at the service board with prices or take a menu with prices and then walk away.” Mentioned this to a good friend of mine who is a marketing and sales consultant and his first words to me were, “Bud you are allowing the sales window to close before it is even open.” Think about that a moment. Do you see what he was saying? By posting prices, the customer was making a decision about whether he wanted to do business with DETAIL PLUS or not, based solely on posted prices. As my friend said to me: “Bud, who is the expert in the field of detailing you, or the customer?” Obviously, I am the expert. “Bud, who knows more about continued ...

Editor’s Note: While we here at Auto Detailing News admire and appreciate Bud Abraham, please note that his opinions expressed in his Detail Doctor columns do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Auto Detailing News. If you have a strong opinion about Bud’s article, feel free to write a Letter to the Editor and send it to Debra Gorgos at debrag@autodetailingnews.com.

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the needs of the vehicles than you do, the customer or you?” Again obviously, it is I, not the customer although some do have an idea of what they think their vehicle needs. However, in the end I am the expert, not them. My friend goes on: “Bud, when you go to the doctor or dentist do you tell them what you want them to do? Of course you do not, you give them a symptom and let them diagnose the problem and tell you what you need done and why. Do you go to the mechanic and tell him exactly what you want done to your vehicle? No, you tell them what you think is wrong and they diagnose the problem and others and again, tell you what the vehicle needs and why.” It did not take much for me to understand his point, one that I was experiencing when my potential customers would walk away without my getting a chance to talk with them or see the vehicle, etc. In other words, the “sales window was closed, before it even

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opened because of the posted prices”. Well, being a reasonably smart guy, after my discussion with my friend I immediately removed the Service Menu Board from the wall, never to put it up again and threw out all our menus with prices and reprinted a two-sided menu with 5 different detail packages that any customer would need done to their vehicle on one side and the other offered the “à la carte” detail services with prices (engine clean; carpet shampoo; mat shampoo; hand carwash), plus any extra services we provided such as windshield chip repair, headlight restoration, paint chip touchup, carpet dyeing, etc. Some with prices and some by estimate. What this did was every customer that walked over from the car wash, or just came in asking “how much?” had to wait on me. If I was available I would immediately talk to the customer, and if I was on the phone or with a customer I would tell them I would be right with them.

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Then the approach was, “How can I help you?” The reply would be a number of different scenarios: “How much for a detail,” “how much to wax my car,” “how much for a carpet shampoo”? etc, etc. My first reply was: “Is the vehicle here so that It can be evaluated?” In almost all cases it was and I asked if we could take a look at it.

Next, ARQ Next thing is to do is apply the ARQ process (Ask Relevent Questions): 1. Has the vehicle ever been detailed? 2. When was the last time? 3. Do you park the vehicle indoors during the day or is it exposed to the elements? 4. Do you garage it at night or park it outside? 5. How often do you wash the vehicle?

What these questions do is create a situation in the customer’s mind that “gosh, I guess I have not been taking good care of my vehicle.” Keep in mind there will always be customers to whom price is the only concern, no matter how great the value. For these customers, “it is you against them”. You cannot win, so do not try. Keep in mind most serious customers are concerned about getting the most for their money, so if you effectively sell to the need and value of the vehicle, and come across as knowledgeable and trustworthy you should have no problem selling the serious customer. All other customers can be a waste of time.

Bud Abraham, founder of DETAIL PLUS Car Appearance Systems, is a noted speaker and writer in the detail industry. Was a founding member of the International Detailing Association and its first executive director. He writes and consults on auto detailing all over the world. He can be reached at buda@detailplus.com.


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