Skip to content

Does Detailing A Car Increase Trade In Value?

Understanding the Impact of Detailing Your Car on its Trade-in Value

When looking to trade-in your used car for a shiny new vehicle, every car owner wants to ensure they get the highest trade-in value possible. Few elements can affect the value of your car as much as its cleanliness and condition. But ever wonder, does detailing a car increase trade in value? In this article, we will discuss the potential of using car detailing methods to increase the resale value and how the cleanliness of your car holds an undeniable sway over the car’s worth when trading it in or selling.

We will also help you get the best trade-in value of a car that you’re looking to trade in as well as when the best time to trade in your car is.

My Preferred Detailing Products

If this article helped you at all, consider hitting the images below to show your support! The next time you buy detailing supplies this gives us a small bit back to keep us running at no additional cost to you! Thank you for your support!

Does detailing a car increase trade in value?

Why is having my car clean for trade-in important?

First impressions are everything, especially when it comes to trading in your car. A clean car is more likely to lure in a buyer who’s looking at the vehicle. When a car dealer inspects a well-maintained car, it often earns a higher score, which can lead to a higher trade-in value and increased market value.

Detailing your car does increase its trade in value. The value of a vehicle is usually determined by it’s mileage, accident history, and how clean or maintained the vehicle in. Get your vehicle washed and detailed for the best trade-in value possible. 

Pro tip: Even if you have a brand new vehicle, detailing your new vehicle will only potentially increase it’s value and protect it for years to come.

What steps can I follow to properly clean my car before trading?

Start with a professional car wash or a careful hand wash, and then detail your car inside out. This includes cleaning the interior car areas, under the hood, and the car paint. Auto detailing can increase the resale value, so it’s recommended to get your car detailed before its evaluation.

Detailing a car is the first thing you should do before you even consider trading your vehicle in. No one wants to purchase a dirty vehicle, it’s important to keep your car in good condition. Detailing can potentially increase its value or make selling your used car easier.

How does a clean interior car affect the trade-in value?

A clean car interior looks and smells better, which instantly makes it more appealing to any potential buyer. Moreover, interior car cleaning ensures the longevity of parts and functionalities, contributing to the maintained state of the vehicle and can significantly increase its trade-in value.

Some factors that determine the value you bring your car for trade-in:

  • Exterior of your car (scratches, swirls, rust, paint fading etc.)
  • Interior of your car (stains, odors, burn spots, etc.)
  • Maintenance completed on the vehicle.
  • Accident history. 

Proper car care has a direct correlation to the value you receive at the dealership or private party. Most of the time, you will almost always get more out of your vehicle selling it to a private party. Sometimes dealerships may have a trade in promotion on a new car, check around first before posting online!

The correlation between detailing a car and the increase in trade-in value

polishing white car trade in

How can detailing a car effect its resale value?

Detailing a car involves a deep and thorough cleaning that goes beyond a normal car wash. By attending to details, minor blemishes can be fixed which enhances the car’s overall presentation and could increase the car’s trade in value or sale value.

Your car is worth significantly more and will increase the value you will receive if you deep clean your car prior to selling it. If you’re not quite ready to have the courage to detail your car, consider hiring a professional cleaning or detailing service in your area. 

Pro tip: A vehicle will lose value if there’s been zero effort to clean the car. Detailing your vehicle always increases the value. Make sure your car is clean and ready for selling before posting any pictures or talking about any trade ins. Especially if selling it privately.

What parts of the car benefits most from detailing?

The most notable parts to benefit from detailing are the car paint, which can regain its luster due to professional detailing and the soft fabrics and leather inside the car which can be restored, keeping your car looking as good as new.

The cost vs benefits of a detailed car before trading in

While professional detailing can be an added expense, the return is typically worth it in the form of a more substantial trade-in offer from dealerships. The trick is to weigh how much value detailing could potentially add against its cost.

The resale value of your car is purely based on the mileage and condition of your car. 

How Kelley Blue Book and other car valuation sources view car detailing?

Is detailing a car taken into account in the Kelley Blue Book value?

Kelley Blue Book, one of the most trusted car valuation sources, does factor cleanliness into their values. A clean and well-maintained car may meet the criteria for a car in ‘excellent’ condition, thus fetching a higher value.

Whether you trade in a vehicle, or if you’re selling it, it’s important to properly clean the vehicle you’re trading or selling to boost your car’s value. Especially these days.

Vehicle prices have skyrocketed due to supply issues over the past couple of years. Luckily it’s getting better, but it’s important once again to keep the car in the best possible condition so you can sell the car easier.

What are other car valuation tools’ stance on car clean and detail?

Most car valuation tools observe the same stance. That is, a detailed, clean car has a higher chance of getting a better trade-in value when compared to a neglected one.

How to determine the value of your used car when trading?

Used car values can be determined using online tools like Kelley Blue Book. These consider factors like the car make, model, year, mileage, condition, and other upgrades to compute the value of your vehicle.

How car dealerships view a well-maintained car in the trade-in process

does detailing a car increase trade in value

How does a dealership calculate the trade-in value?

Dealerships typically factor in the make, model, year, mileage, and overall condition of the car when calculating the trade-in value.

A clean and well-maintained car signals that the car owner has kept the car in good shape, thereby reducing the risk for potential costly repairs and increases its value.

Do dealerships offer more for a car that is clean and maintained?

Absolutely. Dealerships usually offer more for a car that is clean, well-maintained, and detailed as they look attractive to a new buyer and would contribute a higher resale value.

The impact of interior car cleaning on the dealership’s offer for your car

A clean interior contributes to a substantial part of the appeal of the car.

As such, interior car cleaning can significantly improve a dealership’s offer for your car, helping ensure you get the maximum value possible when trading in a car.

Steps to take before selling or trading your car to increase its value

Top things to do to your car before selling

Start by thoroughly cleaning and detailing your car. Get any minor repairs done, ensure all functions and features of the car are operational. Providing serviced and maintenance records can also be of help.

How to increase the overall value of your car before trading?

Investing in professional auto detailing, protecting the car paint by applying ceramic coating, and keeping your car well-maintained, clean and functioning can increase its trade-in value.

Ceramic coating and other measures to increase your car’s resale value

Applying a ceramic coating to your car can help preserve the car paint, making the exterior look new and glossy, which is appealing to potential buyers and dealerships, thus increasing the resale value even further, and maximizing what you get when you trade in your car.

You can also substitute for wax if you’re not ready to work with ceramic coats.

Final Notes:

As you can tell, it’s totally worth getting your detailed first before getting a price on trade in or resell value. You car’s trade-in value is directly correlated with the condition of your vehicle.

If you have a quality and in good shape vehicle, keep it maintained so you can reap the rewards down the road!

Let’s finish up with some frequently asked questions!


Is it worth it to detail a car before trading it in?

Absolutely! The cleaner your vehicle is and the better condition it’s in, the more money you can expect from trade in or reselling. Keep your rides clean!

What increases the trade in value of a car?

Detailing the vehicle, providing previous vehicle service reports, and providing any accident history all impact the trade in value of a car.

How much value does a ceramic coating add?

Ceramic coating creates a chemical bond with the vehicles paint to help preserve and protect it. While there is no “exact” amount of value it adds, having a ceramic coated vehicle makes it look great and repels contaminates in the future.

Is ceramic coating a car worth the money?

Yes, ceramic coating creates a chemical bond to protect the outside. Ceramic coats treats your paint with a protective barrier increasing the longevity of your car. 

Is there a downside to ceramic coating?

The only downside is ceramic coating can be expensive. Applying ceramic coat takes practice and patience because of how lucrative it is to apply. Otherwise, no, it’s a great idea to get your car ceramic coated.

Is ceramic coating worth buying right after a new car purchase?

Yes! Ceramic coating will protect your vehicle from future contaminates or harsh weather conditions. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *