Shampooing Your Vehicle

Bentley Interior ShowcaseShampooing is an important part of professional detailing. Full interior detailing includes shampooing all the surfaces with carpet or upholstery that can be shampooed. This means when you have your vehicle shampooed, your seats, carpets and floor mats will be cleaned. The carpets and floor mats really get grimy, so having them shampooed is a good idea when you are having the rest of your vehicle detailed.

Shampooing Process

The shampooing process has a few simple steps that are easy to follow. You can do it yourself, however, to get the best results you will want to have a water extractor, a dedicated professional tool or use a professional detailing service. The hot water extractor uses piping hot water, over 200 degrees, to deep clean the carpets and is an important professional cleaning tools in the detailer toolkit.

Before you shampoo, you should vacuum the surfaces that are going to be shampooed. This gets rid of the surface dirt and dust and generally improves the results of the shampoo. The next step is to apply the shampoo itself.

Use a brush or rag to brush the shampoo into the carpet, making sure that the shampoo spreads around evenly and gets to all the corners of the carpet. Make sure that the brush is well soaked in water and the shampoo penetrates the entire surface. Take your time with this part of the process.

Dirt and grim will attach to the suds when agitated with a brush. So, when you see the suds, you know that you are working in the shampoo and the chemical bonding that removes the dirt is taking place. Wipe the excess suds off with a wet rag as you go along. By wiping off the suds while applying the shampoo, you are removing layers of dirt that otherwise might sink back into the carpet.

Go through this process twice, wiping off the suds that rise to the top each time for a thorough shampoo. However, don’t overdo the suds! You just want an eighth of an inch or so of foaming and no shampoo left after using the hot water extractor.

If the carpet is super dirty, it is a good idea to pre-spray with a chemical that digs deeply into the carpet and removes the excessive dirt. Carpet upholstery cleaners work well as pre-spray agents.

The final part is to remove the dirt using a hot water extractor. The hot water extractor injects extremely hot water into the carpet, deeply cleaning as it is pulled along. The hot water extractor is pulled along the surface of the carpet deeply cleaning as it goes along. When using this tool, you always pull, then stop. Go to the top and repeat until all the surface area has been treated.

After the hot water extractor has been used you can vacuum a a final time to get excess water out of the carpet. However, there will always be some moisture in the carpet after a shampoo that only time will remove. So, let the vehicle sit for a couple of hours and air dry before using it.

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