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Working at a dealership as a detailer...


rm25x
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Ok so I have been looking at starting my own business. I have since saw an ad for a Mercedes Benz dealer looking for a detailer. I sent over my resume and they want to interview me. It would be an hour drive each way for me to work there.

 

At first I thought it would be a good chance to get some hands on training and experience, but now the more I read, the more it sounds like a bad idea and that I will be learning the wrong way to do things.

 

Thoughts? :confused:

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I'd say any job is worth exploring if you already have an interview lined up. Maybe it would lead to another opportunity at the dealership. Maybe you could offer uber-high end detailing services via the dealership or, with their endorsement, to their big-buck clients. Maybe you could offer services to their clients in your area (an hour from the dealership). Heck, go talk to them -- it's not everyday you get an audience with a decision maker at a high-end retailer in a field you want to be working in. Go make a good impression. :cheers:

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I was also thinking if say I do get the position, and wanted to do side work I would be able to say that my full time job is detailing at a Mercedes Benz dealership. It would probably take doubt out of the customers minds about me working on their vehicles maybe.

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This is a perfect chance to start your business, tell them you will do contract detailing, so you can charge them a per car basis...just remember there is a ton of things to consider when starting a business that is going to require you full-time..like the fact that you will have to buy your health insurance, time involved in travel, and on and on. Not a bad item, just don't sell yourself short. Maybe you could of them a discount based on the number of cars they have you do per month...I have no idea how to price this but I would think it they are a big dealer and they want you to do more then 2 cars per day...more then 60 per month, you could almost do a contract so you could hire additional help if you are priced right. They may or may not go for the idea but it wouldn't hurt to give it some thought and throw them an offer. Also if you take the job offer and think your are going to do detailing on the side, I think that will lose it's appeal rather quickly, having an vocation and avocation that is the same...really makes for not much time for doing any other interests.

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Darryl is right, the dealership isn't going to pay for you to actually detail the customers cars, they're only going to want quick washes and a light coat of wax so it looks decent. They certainly aren't going to pay for correcting.

 

I've sold cars at a few different dealerships, they each operated a little differently, but all had the same results..

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I also agree with these guys, a dealership isn't going to want "detailing" they are going to want cheap & fast, also they are not going to give you high quality products to use, more then likely you will get the 3M stuff that they can get in big drums.

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I worked at dealerships all my life. Basically you just wash wax and install the mats in the new cars. Customer details never had paint correction on them when I did it. It was clean interior(IMO a spotless interior makes the dealership cust overlook the exterior)high speed buff and orbital wax the outside. Windows and other little stuff

Ive never heard or seen a dealership do a paint coreection on any car. Thats what outside companies were for and then somtimes IMO they did a worse job then the dealership.

In dealerships you get alot of KIDS who think they are detailers. Put a wash bucket and wax rag in a kids hand and he'll tell you hes the best detailer out there.

On the other hand I think I picked up some usefull info but not enough as looking at sites like Adams, buying the proper tools and chemicals and experimenting/working on cars.

At the end of the day you are still a detailer but not in the sense of the true meaning of the word.

Right now I work next to a small bodyshop and they detail car regularly. Swirl city. They know I only do it on the side but dont know how long it actually takes to get a car looking the way I think it needs to look. They were crying the other day that they had a black 4dr Audi SUV there and they only had 3 hrs to detail it. Heck some of my washes take 3 hrs

Just my 2 cents

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you can try going to a couple dealerships near you and give them a special discount as a proving period for your work, but this would involve correcting the cars.. they would probably only do a few here and there versus their inventory as it costs more $

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Yes at least go to the interview,, does not mean you have to take job. But find out what it is about.. Like posted earlier, maybe you can get high-end work there???? Tell them what you do, and products you use? Never know what will happen till you tell them.. :2thumbs::2thumbs:

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I work as a detailer at a dodge dealership. We do things that I know are not good for the cars paint! And I know this but to them it's quantity or quality. I do full shampoos and stuff which I take my time on and do what I want to them :) so that may be something you could get out of working at a dealer, as well as getting an idea of how different makes and models clean up. Our dealership doesn't are about exteriors that much just wash dry and throw it out the door. However it may be different at a more "high end" dealership. some days I am tempted to pull out my polisher on the 06 charger RT plum crazy purple :) and see what they think about that... On another note, you don't wanna be polishing cars all day every day. Kinda takes the fun out of it if you do it 5 days a week. Good luck!

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Another thing... take your PC and some Adam's stuff and show them what you can do on a fender. A top-quality, $300 detail by you on a nice used car could mean an extra $1000 in profit for them. Maybe you could sell them on one-off jobs for worthy cars that they get in trade and are going to put on the lot.

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