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How Do You Use a Quick Detailer

Many of you have seen "Quick Detailers" at automotive stores and forums. What exactly are they and how do you use them safely?

What is A Quick Detailer?

Quick Detailers are as the name states - a solution that makes detailing a quick process. However, the catch is that the car needs to be relatively clean prior to using a Quick Detailer. Sounds confusing? Let me explain. Let's say you have a car that has been kept in garage(and not driven) for a few weeks or your auto is at a car show. In either of those scenarios, your car will get dusty and may start losing gloss and accumulate lots of dust. As time passes, the moisture in the air can cause this dust to get coagulate and form a layer of dirt and may start oxidizing certain areas of your car. If that's the case, a quick detailer can be used to remove light dust on the vehicle without having to wash the car.

How Does It Work?

Most Quick Detailers work by encapsulating dust which can be safely wiped away by using a microfiber towel. The solution or detergent may leave a protective residue or sealant which may also extend the durability of the existing wax or coating. However, the main objective here is to remove light dust only. It can be used to remove bird bombs depending on how soon the bird bomb fell on the car. Usually a bird dropping can be removed using a Quick Detailer within an hour of the drop. Another advantage of using a quick detailer is that some of them are friendly to working under the sun. Performing a full wash may lead to streaking or water spotting which can be evaded by simple spray, wipe and buffing of a Quick Detailer.

When Not To Use A Quick Detailer?

A Quick Detailer can be detrimental to your vehicle if you use it as a replacement for a dedicated car wash. If the car has dirt on it, tar, tree sap or solidified bird bomb then it will cause more harm than any good.

Can A Quick Detailer be Used As A Clay Lubricant?

The answer is yes and no. Some manufacturers have Detailers that may be ok to use as clay lubricants while others won't. Please check with the manufacturer or check the label on the solution. Personally, we use a dedicated clay lubricant but since having several products can add up the price and make things hectic to remember, we recommend using simple all-in-one products that encompass various purposes.

Spray Wax or Quick Detailers?

A common misconception is that spray waxes can perform the same function as a quick detailer. This may seem intuitive but they both have very different purposes. They may overlap though: for instance a quick detailer may leave a thin protective seal on top of the paint or a spray wax 'may' have cleaning properties. However, using a spray wax for wiping down a dusty surface may end up having the dust encapsulated into the wax layer on the car which may compromise the durability of the wax or sealant while letting dirt to accumulate as well.

How Do I Use A Quick Detailer?

We have a one minute detailing tutorial above which shows how to use it but this blog will go into more details as to what products you can use or how to do it.

What Do I Need?

1. Dusty Car

2. A Quick Detailer:

  • Optimum Instant Detailer & Gloss Enhancer

  • Meguiar's Ultimate Quik Detailer

  • Optimum No Rinse (Can function as QD at high concentrations)

3. 2-3 Plus Microfiber Cloths

  • Chemical Guys Extra Thick Microfiber Towels


1. Inspect The Car:

This is the most critical part of the entire process. You can use your fingers to gently graze across a horizontal surface(acquires most dust/dirt) and if the dust clings to your finger while feeling smooth, it means it's dusty and a quick detailer can be used. If the surface feels rough and crummy, the car may need a wax or even a clay bar treatment depending on the condition of the car.

2. Spray Quick Detailer:

The Quick Detailer is then sprayed thinly and evenly on top of the automotive surface. Most Quick detailers can be used on windows, rims, trim, chrome and generally on all surfaces(except tires!). It's recommended to do this in a cool and shaded area but many quick detailers can be used at higher temperatures and in direct sunlight. Ensure that you spray on one panel at a time. When spraying in direct sunlight, try to section smaller 2'x2' portions to see if the solution dries before wiping or not.

3. Gently Wipe & Buff:

The Quick Detailer is then wiped using the plush side of a clean microfiber towel. Ensure that there is no pressure and the cloth glides across the surface in a swooping motion. The remaining residue can be dabbed or buffed dry using the other side of the towel.

4. Replace Soiled Microfiber (As Needed):

You will notice the microfiber towel getting soiled as you continue to wipe various panels of the car. If this starts to happen, use a clean and plush side of the towel. If all sides are soiled, discard the towel and use another clean towel.


Quick Detailers are handy when on the go where consistent dust accumulates on the car(eg. car shows, events) or on garage queens that don't get driven and start getting dusty after a couple of weeks. If you have more questions, please feel free to e-mail us at and if you liked this article, please share or like! It means a lot to us!

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