When shelter-in-place orders took effect in cities across the U.S. this spring, a hobby renaissance began. Images of people comfort baking, knitting and puzzling flooded social media, along with car enthusiasts showing off their new DIY car detailing projects.

“Our business was doing some doomsday planning as most small businesses were at the start of the pandemic, waiting for the wall to close in and it just never did,” said Jared Toops, General Manager and Director of E-Commerce at Car Supplies Warehouse, a subsidiary of the Chicago Auto Pros detail shop.

Solving problems and learning new skills online are some of the ways many of us are coping and keeping busy and engaged during these unprecedented times. “Our viewership was increasing on our YouTube channel, and a lot of people were asking questions about how to clean their cars now that they couldn’t go to a carwash or go to a dealer,” Toops explained. “Our e-commerce sales kept increasing month over month as DIY-ers dove into car care for the first time.”

Co-Owner Jason Otterness, who launched his YouTube channel in tandem with Chicago Auto Pros’ detailing business 12 years ago, said the channel just hit a milestone of 100K followers. “I fell in love with detailing first before I fell in love with cars, and now I’ve been doing this for 17 years,” Otterness said. “As I’ve chronicled our business in recent months, the number one question we now get is, ‘What do I need to make my car look the way it does when you all do it?’ and honestly the easiest thing for consumers to do at home is regular maintenance—things like washing, tire shines and vacuuming.”

Whether you’re a newbie or avid detail DIYer, Otterness and Toops (who own a Volkswagen Golf Mk7 and 2020 Tiguan, respectively) sat down with us to share some of their best tips for helping to maintain your car at home:

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