How to Start a Mobile Auto Detail Business


In today's busy world, people don't have time for the extras, like dropping a car off for detailing. If you offer service at his home or workplace, you save your customer time and allow him to maintain the vehicle's look and value. A mobile auto detailing business can provide rewarding financial success, if you carefully plan and execute it. Following all of the necessary steps and anticipating unforeseen problems can help insure that your company becomes a success story.

Things You'll Need

  • Knowledge of city hall and county building locations
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Insurance
  • Logo


Contact the county and city business license offices, zoning offices and codes departments. Ask what permits, fees and licenses you need for ownership and operation of an auto detailing business within their municipalities. Apply for and secure any necessary permits and licenses. Also, obtain insurance and bonding from a carrier specializing in mobile auto detailing coverage. It should cover your business, materials and any employees or contractors you hire.

Design a logo and name that is specific to mobile auto detailing and have it printed on brochures, business vehicle magnets and business cards. Include pictures of vehicles, catchy phrases about mobile service advantages and testimonials from past customers.

Purchase tools and cleaning equipment. Organize the business vehicle to easily transport all needed supplies to customer locations.

Determine your pricing schedule, services and levels of detailing you will offer your customers. Clearly define what they will get for each level of service.

Decide what regions and geographic boundaries will fall within your service area and mark them on a map. Determine if you will offer services outside of that area, and if so, the additional fee.

Advertise your services. Place advertisements in the local newspapers and hang fliers around town. Give friends free detailing for every five customers they send your way. Contact local car dealerships and offer to detail their trade ins and new vehicles for display.

Tips & Warnings

  • Set up a website that includes testimonials from satisfied customers and pictures of detailed vehicles. Customers must give you permission to use photographs of their vehicles.
  • Check out the driving records of all potential employees. They must have licenses for coverage through your business insurance. An accident involving an unlicensed employee in a customer vehicle can incur extreme cost.

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