6275 South Kyrene Road Tempe, Arizona 85283
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Tracy's Auto Body
Quality Repair Since 1986

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: My local carwash offers detailing at half the prices of most professional detailer services, what is the difference?

A: This is a very good question! First of all the term 'Detailing' has been widely misused in the industry. A true detail consists of meticulous cleaning, professional swirl free polishing and protection of surfaces. Many carwashes simply cover dirt with shiny greasy solvent based dressings. This not only traps the dirt inside but the solvents in many of these dressings actually damage the surfaces. Also, many inexperienced workers will run a hi-speed buffer over your paint causing damage and those ugly swirls on your paint or waxing over deep imbedded dirt. Make sure you ask many questions before allowing anyone to detail your car!

Q: Do I need an appointment? 

A: Yes, an appointment is required for a detail at JT's Detailing. This is because of the amount of time required to complete a detail. If at all possible try to call a day or two before you would like to get the work done. If this is not an option give us a call anyways and we will try to accommodate you.


Q: When I bought my new car, the salesman told me I have a clear coat on my paint and it NEVER needs waxing. Is this true?

A: FALSE!!!!! This is simply one of the most mis-understood and incorrectly stated  'facts', detailers see. The fact is 'clear coat' is simply part of the paint system used on most cars and trucks manufactured since the early 1990's. This paint process consists of first painting the color (pigmented paint) which goes on flat without any shine, protection or durability. After the color has been added, a clear urethane paint is added to make the finish hard and glossy. Older (pre 1990's and some newer) paints consist of a single stage paint, where the gloss and hardness is mixed with the color (pigment). Today's clear coats simply make the paint look much more translucent with a deeper shine. Fact is both paint systems MUST be waxed or sealed to protect them from the sun, pollution and other harmful elements. See also the question about paint sealants.

Q: Buffing and waxing are the same thing aren't they?

A: Actually no! Waxing is simply a protective element that is applied to the paint surface. While waxing may help add  some shine to the paint, it should not be confused with buffing.   Buffing is a paint correction process that utilizes a hi-speed rotary buffing machine. This process is used to remove superficial scratches, blemishes and fading of a paint surface. The process consists of starting with a 'cutting compound' used to aggressively remove the damaged paint surface. This process is followed by several polishing steps to smooth and restore the finish to a hi-gloss slippery finish. This process is not typically used on well cared for vehicles, as it does remove minute layers of paint. Our full auto detail service includes applying wax or sealant with a dual action machine. This is a non-aggressive means to lightly polish and protect the paint with out leaving 'swirling' marks. Buffing is available for damaged paint.

Q: Will steam cleaning my carpets and seats remove all stains?

A: Unfortunately no. While pre-treating and steam extraction  is the most effective cleaning procedure available, some spills (especially any with reddish dyes), can actually damage and dye carpet and upholstery fibers. Once this occurs, these fabrics can be cleaned ,but, color change is permanent unless material is replaced or re-dyed.

Q:What Is Car Detailing?

A:Car detailing is the process of bringing a vehicle back to the condition it was in when it was new, and ensuring that it stays that way for as long as possible. This is done through meticulously cleaning the vehicle and applying products to protect it from the elements and from wear and tear.


Q:Why Should I Have My Vehicle Detailed?

A:Detailing is one of the best forms of preventative maintenance for your vehicle. In addition to keeping your vehicle looking great on a day-to-day basis. Detailing provides protection from the long-term effects of environmental exposure (ex. UVRays, Acid Rain, Road Salt). Although your new or used vehicle may have been detailed before you purchased it. Many automotive dealerships only use products designed to make the vehicle look good to potential buyers, without providing much lasting protection. Many older vehicles suffer from problems such as unpleasant interior odors, dirty carpets and upholstery, scratched or oxidized paint, and dirty engine compartments. All of these problems and many others can be corrected by detailing. If you are planning to sell your vehicle. Have it detailed. It's the best way to sell it quicker and will often increase the value.

Q:How Often Should My Vehicle Be Detailed?

Besides regular washing and vacuuming, your car should be detailed 2 or 3 times a year to keep it looking its best. Dark colored finishes will always require more frequent buffing and polishing to maintain a high gloss.

Q:My Vehicle Has A Clear Coat, Is Waxing Necessary?

A clear-coat is NOT the impenetrable shield that most people think it is. It is simply the top layer of a dual stage paint system called a base-coat/clear-coat. It is susceptible to environmental damage and deterioration. It just doesn’t show the symptoms as quickly as a single stage paint system. A wax (or paint sealant) acts as a sacrificial layer of protection for your finish.

Q:What Is A Clay Bar Treatment?

This treatment cleans the surface of your car’s paint. This product lifts the dangerous industrial fallout, oxidation and other contaminants off your paint’s surface to provide a smooth feel finish. Recommended on vehicles 2 years and older.

Q:I Recently Purchase A New Vehicle, What Are Some Steps I Can Take To Keep It The Way It Left The Showroom?

We recommend having a newly acquired or previously owned vehicle detailed right away. Detailing provides preventive maintenance for your vehicle's appearance. Although dealers usually "detail" vehicles before they are sold. They usually don't use products designed for long-term protection. We will inspect your vehicle and recommend what is needed. Once your vehicle is protected. Regular washing and occasional detailing will be the key to keeping it looking good.

Q:How Can I Keep My Vehicle Looking Good Between Details?

A: You should have it washed and vacuumed (or do it yourself) every week or every other week whether it looks dirty or not.

Q:Is It Bad To Bring My Vehicle To An Automatic Wash?

A: Not necessarily, but it may surprise you which types of automatic washes can be the most dangerous. While it may seem likely that touch-less washes would be safer, most of them use chemicals that can do more damage to your vehicle than any cloth or brush ever could. If you are determined to go to an automatic car wash, we recommend selecting a reputable cloth or foam wash with a spot-free rinse.