The price list for auto detailing will vary depending upon where you live and where you have the detail or car wash performed. The type of service you request should also be taken into consideration when comparing auto detail prices.
Auto Detailing - The National Average
According to The Auto Detail School, detailers charge between $150 to $200 if you take your vehicle to an independent detail or car wash establishment. To get your car detailed at a high volume used car lot that offers this service, expect to pay anywhere from $65 to $125. A good auto detailer, no matter where you take your vehicle, should take approximately three to five hours to complete the work, depending upon the services you choose. Quickie car washes will be cheaper and faster, but most only offer a basic detail and are high volume retailers.
Price List for Auto Detailing
If a detailer has education and training behind them, the price will be higher. Prices for a good car detail also depend on where you live in the United States. If you live on the West Coast or in a resort town, you'll pay more, often up to $800 for the works or entire cleaning and detail, depending on the vehicle you own. The East Coast seems to have more reasonable prices, usually around $300, for the same service. The Midwest falls somewhere between the two. Here's a look at a range of prices you should expect to pay for various auto detailing services:
|Type of Service||Price Range|
|Custom Hand Wash||$30-$50|
|Polymer Wax With Clay||$110-$150|
|Base Interior Vacuum/Wash||$35-$50|
|Complete Interior/Exterior Detail||$275-$325|
|Engine Steam Clean||$275-$300|
The price ranges provided above will be affected by the size of a vehicle. For example, if your vehicle is a truck, minivan, or SUV, expect to detailers to charge on the high end of the price ranges provided.
Types of Auto Detailers
Car Wash Chains
The price of an auto detail can be directly related to where you take your car. Almost all large cities and towns have car wash chains that offer return customer discounts. Even with a special, you'll probably pay around $100 for a service that includes wash, wax, interior and exterior detail, windows, tires, and wheels at these mass-market car wash chains. These are fine for standard cars, trucks, minivans, and SUVs, but once a year you should have your car detailed by a professional. If you do choose the chain car washes, ask about custom hand washing and detailing outside of the machine. Most detailers offer this service if you ask, and you can expect to pay $200-$500 depending on your vehicle size.
Professional auto detailers can do it all, including paint chip repairs, clay waxing, and buffing, and they will give you a quality interior detail as well. Only choose detailers in your area who have workers that have been trained or went to a trade school to become a professional detailer. The price range for a full detail, including paint repairs and reconditioning is $400-$800. It should be noted that if you have a luxury car in need of a detailing, you will always need to use a professional detailer in lieu of a body shop or car wash.
Auto body and paint shops will also detail your vehicle. However, for most, it's an all-day process, and depending upon where you live, you'll pay $200 to $600. If you're taking your car in for service at a car dealership, chances are they offer auto detailing as well, and prices at dealerships can range from $200 to $400.
Check Out Your Auto Detalier
You can find a local price list for auto detailing, reviews, and recommendations from Angie's List. As always, when seeking a consumer service, check with your local Better Business Bureau to see if the company has any unresolved complaints.