If you’ve ever wondered how much it costs to have a car detailed in the UK or if car detailing is a solid business venture, you’re in the right place. We’ll also dive into whether car detailing is worth it, how to detail a car in the UK, why it’s so expensive, and how much a full car cleaning costs. Recently, Axioma technicians showcased some top-tier car detailing products, and we’ve got reviews and insights to share. So, buckle up and let’s get started!

How Much Does It Cost to Have a Car Detailed in the UK?

A full cleaning, or full valet, can range from £150 to over £800, depending on the services included. This comprehensive package ensures that every part of your vehicle is thoroughly cleaned and protected. The cost of car detailing in the UK can vary widely based on the services you choose. Here’s a quick breakdown:

Basic Car Detailing: Ranges from £37 to £183. This usually includes washing, tyre cleaning, waxing, mirror and window cleaning, interior polishing, and spray coating.

Full Car Detailing: Costs between £250 to £800. This comprehensive package includes interior vacuuming, deodorizing, paint protection, and engine cleaning.

Interior Detailing: Priced at £62 to £125. Services include vacuuming, shampooing carpets and upholstery, dashboard cleaning, leather treatment, and odour removal.

Exterior Detailing: Costs range from £93 to £125. This involves window cleaning, tyre and alloy wheel cleaning, contaminant removal, and waxing.

Specialised services can add to the cost. For instance, paint correction and protection can range from £205 to £851, while engine and bay detailing starts from £250.

Why is car detailing so expensive?

Several factors contribute to the high cost of car detailing:
Quality Materials: Premium products are used for detailing

Car detailing services use high-quality materials to achieve the best possible results. This includes specialized cleaning agents, polishes, waxes, and sealants that are often more expensive than regular car cleaning products. These premium products ensure a superior finish and long-lasting protection for the vehicle’s surfaces. Additionally, eco-friendly and non-abrasive materials are frequently chosen to protect both the car and the environment, contributing to higher overall costs.

Skilled Technicians: Extensive training and expertise are required

Detailing a car to a high standard requires extensive training and experience. Skilled technicians must understand the intricacies of various car surfaces, paint types, and cleaning techniques. They need to be adept at using both manual and machine tools effectively. This expertise ensures that each vehicle is handled with the utmost care, achieving a professional and flawless finish. The investment in continuous training and development of these skills is reflected in the pricing of detailing services.

Time-Consuming Process: Detailing is detailed and labor-intensive work

The car detailing process is comprehensive and labor-intensive, often requiring several hours to complete thoroughly. Each step, from washing and decontaminating to polishing and protecting, is performed meticulously to ensure the best outcome. The attention to detail and the thoroughness involved in these processes contribute to the high cost. A professional detailer might spend hours on a single car to ensure that every part of the vehicle is cleaned and protected to the highest standard.

Specialized Equipment: Expensive equipment that requires maintenance

Professional car detailers use specialized equipment, such as dual-action polishers, steam cleaners, and high-powered vacuums, which are essential for achieving superior results. This equipment is costly to purchase and requires regular maintenance to ensure optimal performance. The investment in such high-end tools allows detailers to work more efficiently and effectively, offering services that far exceed what can be achieved with standard car cleaning tools.

Location and Overheads: Higher costs in urban areas

The cost of running a car detailing business can vary significantly depending on its location. Urban areas, in particular, tend to have higher rent, utilities, and other overhead expenses. Additionally, urban environments often require more marketing efforts to stand out in a competitive market. These increased operational costs are typically passed on to the customers, resulting in higher prices for detailing services in metropolitan regions compared to rural areas.

Travel Time: Adds to labor costs for mobile services

Mobile car detailing services, which travel to the customer’s location, involve additional labor costs related to travel time and expenses. Detailers must account for the time spent commuting, which can vary significantly depending on traffic and distance. This added time is factored into the overall cost of the service. Furthermore, mobile units often need to transport all necessary equipment and materials, which incurs additional fuel and maintenance costs for the service vehicles. These factors contribute to the higher pricing of mobile detailing services.

Is Car Detailing a Good Business in the UK?

Absolutely, car detailing can be a lucrative business in the UK, especially if you consider these factors:

Location: High-traffic areas tend to attract more customers.

Pricing Strategy: Competitive pricing ensures better profitability.

Marketing: Effective marketing can attract and retain customers.

Quality of Service: High-quality services lead to repeat business and referrals.

Maximizing profitability involves offering a range of services, using high-quality products, streamlining operations, and investing in marketing and customer service.

Are Car Detailing Services Worth It?

The short answer is yes. Professional car detailing services offer several benefits:

Enhanced Aesthetics and Value: Regular detailing maintains your car’s appearance and resale value.

Comprehensive and Specialized Cleaning: Professional detailing fixes accumulated damage and prevents future issues, saving you time and effort compared to DIY cleaning.

Health and Safety: It reduces allergens and bacteria within the car’s interior.

One reviewer mentioned, “Great value for money, well-made products for their intended use! Cars looking great now!” This highlights the tangible benefits of regular detailing.


In summary, car detailing in the UK can range from a basic clean at £37 to a full valet at £800 or more. It’s a worthwhile investment for maintaining your car’s appearance and value. If you’re considering starting a car detailing business, it can be highly profitable with the right strategy and quality of service.

For more tips and information on car maintenance, be sure to visit the rest of our blog. And if you’re dealing with scratches, don’t hesitate to check out our scratch removal services!

Maxwell Harrington is a renowned expert in aesthetic car repair, known for his innovative work at Axioma, where he combines art and advanced technology in SMART car repairs. His expertise in custom paint jobs, body modifications, and use of digital tools for vehicle restoration has made him a pioneer in blending automotive design with state-of-the-art repair techniques.