View Full Version : What kind of Detailer are you?

Nov 6th, 2008, 07:36 PM
I was wondering how many of us detail as a full time job, part time job, on our free time, or your own and a few others for fun.

Nov 6th, 2008, 07:47 PM
I detail mine and a few others here and there. Don't think I could ever give up my full time job for detailing. Yes, I like my 'real' job that much.

Nov 6th, 2008, 08:05 PM
I picked my car and a few others but I also do it just for fun. I've never charged any money for detailing. Most times they will take me to lunch or something.

I think after I get a little better and feel comfortable using a rotary I would like to do it to earn so extra fun money.

Nov 6th, 2008, 09:07 PM
I am teaching my children everything that I am learning so they can earn some coin to pay for stuff they want now and to have something to fall back on to help pay for school later. The daughter has earned some money within the club we belong to already.

Markus Kleis
Nov 6th, 2008, 11:04 PM
I attend SDSU 2 days a week (12 units, hard classes this semester, 1 more to go) and I detail every chance I get (literally) on the days I don't have class. Lately, I've been detailing client's cars, trucks, SUVS, and even planes about 4-5 days a week.

It's exhausting, and I love it.

J. A. Michaels
Nov 7th, 2008, 02:41 AM
Basically it just the wife's, mine and the kids. Nothing major at all.

Nov 7th, 2008, 08:17 AM
I detail mine, my wife's and intended to help some friends at low cost.

Nov 7th, 2008, 09:41 AM
I detail part time or when there is a need to. I've had people call me up in the middle of the week asking for a detail because they're having a photoshoot or a car show and that becomes a must be done type of job. Otherwise I typically detail on the weekends and it's usually 1 car a day since I do more paint corrections. I'm not mobile but I can go to customers homes and there I use their faucet and an electrical outlet. I have a website as well if anyone wants to check it out. Should be in my profile. If anyone knows where I can have T-shirts made that would be great. :xyxthumbs

Nov 7th, 2008, 10:05 AM
Mine and a few others....rarely for money.

Nov 7th, 2008, 10:34 AM
Mine and my family's rides. Sometimes I'll do a neighbors car or something either because they ask or the fact that its a BMW M5 thats being "abused" and I just cant stand looking out my window and seeing it sitting there all dirty and such.:furious1

Nov 7th, 2008, 11:54 AM
I voted part time. I have a full time job and I also go to school part time, so my time is very limited. I really love detailing, and I will usually find a way to make time when someone needs a car done. I'd say I do 2-3 cars a month right now. :wavey

Superior Shine
Nov 8th, 2008, 09:43 AM
Full blown feed'n my baby momma paying the bills sweat'n in the trenches detailer.

Nov 8th, 2008, 05:47 PM
I have a full time job and I'm in my last semester of school so I usually detail cars on weekend when someone needs a car done. Basically I do a car per day since what I do is paint correction, never "washed" someones car without doing some work to the paint or interior

Nov 13th, 2008, 09:32 AM
What kind of Detailer are you?

Not very good at all, I'm afraid ... :(

Nov 13th, 2008, 11:29 AM

Ryan L.
Nov 13th, 2008, 08:48 PM
I do my family cars and do a lot of other cars in the neighbor hood. I choose for fun because it was the best option. I do some full details with paint correction but a lot of just basic washes and some claying and waxing. Really what ever the person wants, I'll do and charge accordingly. I'm good friends with a lot of my customers so they know to just ask for what ever they want and I'll suggest some other things in addition.


Black Bart
Nov 14th, 2008, 07:27 AM
I'm not a slow detailer and I'm not a fast detailer so I guess you could say I'm a halffast detailer. :chuckle1

Nov 14th, 2008, 07:41 AM
I used to run a fairly nice side business (J.R.'s AutoPorter). I'd do 2-3 cars a week mostly on weekends but occasionally I'd pick up an evening detail. I did this for about 46 years. It was fun and bought me lots of toys. I retired the business two years ago and now only do my own and family member's cars. I had a great group of regular customers, mostly well-to-do white collar types with newer vehicles, a few classics and custom rides. I miss it but it was getting to be too much for me. Good to be retired.

Renny Doyle
Nov 14th, 2008, 08:14 AM
It's not just a living...it's a way of LIFE!

I am definitely Car Crazy! (plane and bike crazy too)

Dec 3rd, 2008, 10:00 AM
I do it for fun. I just charge a little so I can keep replenishing all the things I use. But most people don't mind, in fact they will give me more than I ask as kind of a donation except for the couple times I did it at church at their car wash fundraiser.

Tom Weed
Dec 3rd, 2008, 10:32 AM
I have a fulltime job, so I detail on the weekends. It started out as a hobby on just mine, then came friends, then neighbors, and it's growing from there. My problem is I don't really have enough time, but I do enjoy it even though it is hard work, it provides that feeling of accomplishment or satisfaction when your finished to stand back and admire your work and it adds a little spending money...

Dec 3rd, 2008, 10:38 AM
Just my car, but sometimes we get togethers with friends to details ours cars at same time :woot2

Dec 3rd, 2008, 11:51 AM
Started doing wife's and my car for fun/hobby several years ago. Will probably start doing some other family member's cars for fun, as well (gives me an excuse to play with the new G110 more often...:D).

Dec 3rd, 2008, 12:04 PM
I've done mine and family + friends car for years - and as word got around I decided to start my own business only been going since aug this year but got a unit now and business is so good I go full time from monday :dp:

Dec 3rd, 2008, 03:30 PM
Have A Fulltime Job and Have weekend only Detail Business. Pays for a lot of extras at least until the economy went south. It started out as a maintaining mine and my brothers cars and took off from there.

Dec 3rd, 2008, 09:03 PM
I am a fulltime student and will detail anyones car who is brave enough to let me touch it.

Dec 4th, 2008, 11:46 AM
Scottwax2My car and my wife's. For Christmas, I created a coupon good for a detail, and give it to my kids and a few close friends. They say it's the best gift they get!Scottwax4


Dec 4th, 2008, 12:40 PM
I am full time 15 yr Correctional Deputy, 3 @ 50 hard to give up. I like to detail my cars and have done a couple of friends cars for cheap (basically pay for time, replenish stuff) and have a detail coming up soon as the back heals up.

Dec 22nd, 2008, 10:37 AM
In August of 2007 I quit my full-time IT job of over 8 years to do mobile detailing. Now, plans are in the works to move into a building (fixed location) in the first quarter of 2009.

Dec 22nd, 2008, 10:56 AM
My bro is 2-3 days in house and 3 days mobile by appointment only.
He got himself an RV so the distance he will go is only limited by the size of the job(s). At the moment he services between Ottawa and Montreal as we are located between the two.

Dec 22nd, 2008, 03:00 PM
My cars only. I recently found out wax on wax off is a perfect excuse to not run errands for the wife on weekend. jk!

Dec 22nd, 2008, 08:07 PM
Full time, and love going into work every day...except when it's 5 degrees here.

Jan 5th, 2009, 10:56 AM
So far I've only done family members (and the xSO's cars) and gave out two smg.photobucket.com/albums/v619/MikeEast/2008/Detailing/Tylers%202005%20%20Colorado this year, doing what I'd guess would be closer to paint correction than detailing.

I would dearly love to be able to produce some income from shining sheet-metal at some point, I enjoy that much more than what my 'real' job has turned into...


*****Add "http://" before the above "link" in your browser and it will take you to the detailing pictures. -Mark Kleis

Jan 5th, 2009, 11:05 AM
I just do mine and my wife's. Sometimes somebody in the family or a friend will want me to help them with theirs. The only professional detailing I have done is I detailed my buddy's Saab for an European Auto Show (which he won his class). I got paid with a good steak dinner.

I would love to get into it full time but the pay wouldn't be enough and it would be too much like a commission job (which I'll never have again).

Darth Raider
Feb 13th, 2009, 10:03 AM
I owned a Detail Shop in Bevery Hills for about 7 years in the 70's. Now I just do my cars, and a few 'Show Cars' of long time customers. I still enjoy it, and still take classes to keep up with the lastest products and applications.


Feb 13th, 2009, 03:46 PM
New to detailing. Just beginning work on our 2004 Buick Rendezvous CXL and 2007 Buick Lucern CXL. Have most of my supplies together along with a PC. I appreciate the help from the forum.

Feb 13th, 2009, 04:50 PM
I chose my car only because I'm just starting to get into this, but I hope to learn enough and become proficient enough to do it part time and maybe have it as a fallback should I ever get laid off from my RL job. I also see it as something I can keep doing after mandatory retirement in 20 years should I need the additional scratch ;)

Feb 13th, 2009, 10:31 PM
i detail my truck and 3- 5 cars a month for some side cash, but lately just my truck

Feb 13th, 2009, 10:51 PM
I do mine an wife's ver. I do friends ,family's also. I like doing it. I won best of Show (class) with my 01Ram last year.:xyxthumbs

zoomzoom mazda5
Mar 2nd, 2009, 05:42 AM
My Dad told to wax his 63 Olds 98 in Black, that's when I started,(in 63) it was a the beginning of my quest for the perfect finish, I been doing this on and off for about 38 yrs for my self and others too. Always learning something new and Hope to see Mike in Florida soon...........

Mar 3rd, 2009, 11:20 AM
i do mine and a few others.

Apr 4th, 2009, 03:34 PM
I am an OCAR (obsessive compulsive **** ********) crazy, every sized sable paint brush, compressed air, tooth brushes, q-tips, vacuum, quick detail before and after use, to outside, inside, and engine. Haven't figured how to get to under carriage (no jacks, live on a down hill cul du sac with a downhill driveway). Complete detail of outside, inside, engine every week.

She is not driven every day and has to live under a car cover that gives me fits of frustration. I separate all micro cloths into categories and wash accordingly with TIDE, no fabric softener.

I'm a nut.:chuckle1:chuckle1:D:D

Apr 21st, 2009, 07:36 AM
I see this post is a little dated, how are things since leaving your job to be fulltime?

Apr 25th, 2009, 06:51 AM
I guess im a weekend detailer, i perform a mild detailing sessions by hand (as i dont have the DA yet) on my cars and few other cars in the weekends when im free from college, but still maintain by washing and using UQD/QD at least 3 days in the weekdays..

Jul 15th, 2009, 02:39 PM
My own and a few others close friends and the like. I would love to start doing it part time though because I enjoy it and why not get paid for doing something you like?

Sep 10th, 2009, 06:50 PM
I am kept pretty busy evenings and weekends working on stuff from the 1920's up to the 1960's once in a while I get to shine something newer.

Sep 10th, 2009, 07:25 PM
holding a ful time job
detailing only avail on off day (usually after church on sun till night)
hoping to go full swing -
i have help to detailed up, many of my friends, relative & pastor car as showing my gratitute to them
also intending to detail all my church friends ride, if God given me this passion I should be doing it rightly

Cheers to all you great detailer out there......Saluting your passion

Sep 10th, 2009, 07:54 PM
What kind of Detailer are you?

Not very good at all, I'm afraid ... :(

you just makes me laugh

Oct 28th, 2009, 08:26 PM
I am now a part-time detailer. I get to work on cars when I am needed and when I am not working at my part-time job, at school or doing school work. I am quite the busy guy. :dunno

Nov 10th, 2009, 12:02 PM
Full time here! Well some times like double time..

Paul S
Nov 12th, 2009, 11:32 AM
Wondering if I really want to detail for $$$$ part-time and have to deal with the public. Up until now I have only done family and friends cars. Seems people ask who did the work and calls are starting to come asking for a detail. Retirement is about 21 months away and was looking at a detailing side hustle . Thinking a cash only business might be OK. Anybody want to talk me out of or into this ?

................................ Paul S ................

Nov 12th, 2009, 11:45 AM
I'd love to do this as my full time job, but I think I should stick to it being my weekend getaway doing family and friends cars. I'd love to start up my own business but the one thing I hate the most is being rushed to do a job, I like to detail on my terms. I like being thorough and complete....a simple wash and wax doesn't bring me much satisfaction.

Nov 16th, 2009, 06:21 PM
Part time detailer. Mainly in the evenings and the weekends. Wanting to take it mobile and grow into full time if possible. I still have a lot to learn.

Nov 16th, 2009, 08:56 PM
Family & friends only; though I am more than happy to help a newbie if they really want to learn.

Nov 18th, 2009, 07:25 AM
iam working part time right now but i would like if it could be full time, i just started detailing in Chile about a month and a half so its still picking up, also detailing is not known much here, but iam doing between 1 or 2 cars weekly, all correcction work, i want to have 1 car every 2 days (that way i rest between each one) actualy this is my full time job (self employed) but i dont have the cars to make it full time yet, so i work on weekends and then in the week i go out with my wife, go shopping, stay home reading MOL, its very nice to go to the supermarket while its emty....

Matt Majeika
Mar 4th, 2010, 12:25 PM
I do my own car for the love of it! I have a passion for detailing... I feel like I'm on top of the world when I'm done!

Thinking about starting a mobile detailing business this spring. Nothing huge - just a word-of-mouth basis. It's not about the money for me - it's about the passion. Thoughts?

Mar 15th, 2010, 09:21 PM
I detail our own personal car when the time permits...:hotrod2

Aug 17th, 2010, 08:22 AM
I used to detail only family cars a few years ago, then a neighbor asked to have her Corolla detailed. With the word-of-mouth I detailed about 5 to 8 cars per summer for customers.
This year, to my own surprise, I did my 29th customer's car last week-end.
Mainly full detail, but some ext/int cleaning and very few exterior wash only.

When I get the time, I want to make a post in the showoff section here. I document almost every detail that I do for my own pleasure.

Sep 27th, 2010, 02:13 PM
i detail my car, as meguiars say i think the idea of a 'CAR CRAZY' gene is quite relevant, it is just an amzingly addictive hobbie to keep your pride and joy looking it's best and actually enjoying the process..and using meguiars products, what else?

john m.
Sep 27th, 2010, 03:07 PM
I vary a lot :D

during the summer I am part time. However, when school starts back up I am still part time just less frequently since I have to concentrate on school :)

Sep 27th, 2010, 03:13 PM
i am mobile , full time.

i change from hobby to part time and now full time.
since i do as living things change a bit , the whole view of detailing has change.
before i see detail as an art , now i see detail as time is money.
the days when i use to take 100+ pictures on project are gone , and same with hours spend on a car doing things that no one cares and no one pay for.


Chris Thompson
Sep 28th, 2010, 02:53 PM
Full time here. Loving every minute of it.

The Dodge
Jul 1st, 2011, 12:15 PM
I wish it was "Full Time"(as a career), but up here in Washington State there is not a real demand for people to detail there cars very often! So for now it is just "For Fun"!!

Mar 11th, 2012, 03:33 AM
It would be a blast if i can detail full time, but i really prefer detailing somewhere in between full time and for fun. And it would focus only on my cars or my relative's or a friend's cars. As much as i like it and find it fun I'm worried that if i turn it into a career it would no longer be fun plus the fact that I'm not that skilled in so many areas and there some aspects i'm still afraid of like engine detailing.

Mar 11th, 2012, 04:20 PM
Full Time Mobile/Garage when the weather is no good, I dont see it as work though like they say if you love what you do, you never work a day in your life!

Mar 16th, 2012, 12:31 AM
Just in from NZ. Have just started to do as a hobby. My own car at present.

oasis mobile
May 8th, 2012, 07:23 PM
I am a full time detailer. We are fully mobile and self contained.
Its easy money and I love being my own boss and working my own hrs.