CAR Bad experience at a local detail shop... how would you handle this?

TopGun113

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2001
74,851
I've owned my new car less than a week. The dealer prep job was actually great - no swirl marks that I could see at all in bright sunlight.

Today I took it to a detail shop in Chicago. The best rated shop in Chicago, actually. Had them do a basic hand wash/wax since the dealer's prep was more of a polish and I wanted to make sure the paint was protected. It was $55 minus a $10 coupon.

Got it back - first problem I noticed was a greasy hand print on my leather console cover. Also some dirt marks on the passenger seat (assume the guy sat there while he washed the inside windows).

Then, in bright sunlight I can see light swirl marks. Nothing serious, but they're there. I know swirls are impossible to avoid on a black car, but I wouldn't expect that immediately from a reputable detailer.

How should I handle this? Email them? Call and complain? I feel like a pretentious asshole for doing that, but I'll do it anyway.

The dirty hand print on the console is what really pisses me off because it shows their lack of attention to detail (no pun intended). I ended up doing my seats and leather trim with Meguiar's Gold about 10 minutes after I left. But tell me please if I should be pissed about the swirl marks. :o

Thanks :wavey:
 

396Hawk

Active Member
Aug 11, 2005
1,018
The First State
I've owned my new car less than a week. The dealer prep job was actually great - no swirl marks that I could see at all in bright sunlight.

Today I took it to a detail shop in Chicago. The best rated shop in Chicago, actually. Had them do a basic hand wash/wax since the dealer's prep was more of a polish and I wanted to make sure the paint was protected. It was $55 minus a $10 coupon.

Got it back - first problem I noticed was a greasy hand print on my leather console cover. Also some dirt marks on the passenger seat (assume the guy sat there while he washed the inside windows).

Then, in bright sunlight I can see light swirl marks. Nothing serious, but they're there. I know swirls are impossible to avoid on a black car, but I wouldn't expect that immediately from a reputable detailer.

How should I handle this? Email them? Call and complain? I feel like a pretentious asshole for doing that, but I'll do it anyway.

The dirty hand print on the console is what really pisses me off because it shows their lack of attention to detail (no pun intended). I ended up doing my seats and leather trim with Meguiar's Gold about 10 minutes after I left. But tell me please if I should be pissed about the swirl marks. :o

Thanks :wavey:

Did you say anything to them when you picked the car up or did you just pay them and leave? If you didn't say anything to them I don't see what recourse you have other than not using them again and not recommending them if someone asks. You can always talk to them (I wouldn't call or email, I would go talk to the person in charge face-to-face) but if they don't care about your business as the poor work suggests, they probably won't do jack for you.
 

Scottwax

Making detailing great again!
May 5, 2000
200,922
Home of the Texas Rangers
It could be what they did removed any glaze the dealer used to hide swirls. In any event, a wash and wax for what you paid isn't going to result in a stellar job. People just don't work that hard for that kind of money with the overhead a detail shop has. You can go back to them but I'm not sure they have the expertise to properly address a black car.

BTW, you can get a black car swirl free but it is a lot of work keeping it there.
 
TS
TS
TopGun113

TopGun113

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2001
74,851
Thanks guys, I appreciate it.

I'm not going to worry about it. The car pretty much looks great, it's just some minor spiderwebbing that I know is inevitable. It could've even been something I did when I washed it myself the 3rd day I owned it (after a highway trip it was covered with bugs).

The grease print (and dirty footprint on the side of the footwell by the accelerator) is unacceptable though. If I go back there, I'll mention it to them in person so it doesn't happen again. Or I'll find a shop where I can stay in the vehicle but doubt I'll find any quality shop like that. I'd use ONR and do it myself but in the winter I'll definitely have them wash it with running water at least once every couple weeks.

This is the shop... it probably is the best in Chicago but unfortunately they're slipping lately. http://tinyurl.com/3btgkyj
 

Scottwax

Making detailing great again!
May 5, 2000
200,922
Home of the Texas Rangers
Okay but they appear to be best according to the general public, 99% of whom don't know squat about what a proper detail is supposed to look like. The products they use appear to be geared towards volume shops and not paint correction level detailers. They might use Zymol wax (probably one of the cheaper ones, definitely not using $2000 a jar versions) but I've never heard of Dr. Beasely's products. Never heard of them being mentioned on any detailing site I've been to either.
 

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