There’s nothing quite like the feeling of driving a new car. But have you ever bought a used car from a dealer who made it look and feel just like a new car? It’s amazing what those guys can do!

If you are like a lot of car owners, washing the car and doing all the detailing yourself may not be feasible, especially not every week. But whether you have it done or do it yourself, following this routine regularly will keep your car’s appearance from slipping.

Keep the junk picked up – It’s amazing how fast junk accumulates in a car. Food wrappers, papers, and things that just didn’t get carried into the house tend to pile up. It’s important to keep anything food-related picked up so it won’t attract bugs or make a mess. Another thing to think about is that while a pile of papers lying on the floor won’t damage the car, they could easily be hiding something that will, so keep the clutter cleared out.

Vacuum well, especially in the crevices – You need to vacuum up all the dirt you track in, pet hair, crumbs, etc. A handheld vacuum or small Shop-Vac is best because it gives you enough maneuverability to get into all the weird angles you need to. Look for one with a thin crevice tool so you can really get down in the small spaces.

Clean carpet and upholstery – There are carpet and upholstery cleaners made especially for cars, but you can also use the same ones you use in the house. Make sure spills and dirt are cleaned up as much as possible before spraying, otherwise you’ll just be making mud. You can use a scrub brush, but be careful on the seats. Blot up any excess moisture, then be sure to leave the car open so it can dry out, otherwise you may get mildew and end up worse off than you started.

Care for leather if you have it – Leather needs special attention, but check the manufacturer’s instructions because since the late 1990s, most leather used in cars actually has a thin vinyl protective coating on it, so regular leather conditioner won’t soak in.

Clean the windows – Front and rear car windows tend to get a film on them, which can make it very difficult to see when there’s an early morning glare, so keep them clean. If you have difficulty reaching the extent of the windshield, there are several tools available to help.

There’s not much point in keeping up the inside of your car if the outside looks bad.  One easy way to upgrade the car’s look is to replace any aged or damaged license plate covers with a new steel license plate frame.