Most of the time when people think of detailing their mind automatically goes to cars, but the world of detailing goes way beyond that. At Reliable Detailing we are experts in not just car detailing, but boats and planes as well. The way we see it, if you spend that much money on something it only makes sense to keep it in its best shape and to ensure you get the best out of your aircraft or vehicle.

In today’s day and age, aircrafts are becoming more and more accessible both privately and through corporations. From emergency services, to hospitals, to private corporations, to law enforcement, the need for aircraft maintenance is more apparent than ever. You may think detailing airplanes and helicopters isn’t that essential but it not only makes your aircraft look better but it helps it operate better as well. Dirt buildup can make it hard to see out of windows, interfere with certain components, as well as effect things like aerodynamics and fuel usage.


What Makes Detailing Aircraft Different?


Although with aircraft there are several similarities to detailing cars, there are actually many notable differences. Even if you are extremely familiar with the car or boat detailing process, aircrafts are a very unique and need to be approached accordingly. It goes much further then just washing a plane with soap and topping it off with a coat of wax.

For starters, there are actually several places on a plane or helicopter you want to avoid washing and/or waxing altogether. Because every aircraft is different, these sensitive areas will vary.

Another thing to keep in mind is the type paints and chemicals you’re working with. You need to know which chemicals are safe to use on each plane’s surface and how to properly apply them. But it’s important to really do your research and take your time as some chemicals can be extremely harmful for your aircraft’s surface. As an example, there are many common degreasers that will not only damage your paint but cause serious damage to your aircraft’s aluminum, composite skin, and the aircraft’s actual frame.

Know Your Aircraft’s Paint Surface


Obviously aircrafts are going to come in a variety of shapes and sizes as well as be in different conditions based on their age. Many planes are aging, rare, and/or historic models so they need to be handled very delicately. Paint that is 10-20 years old requires an equivalent of an automobile paint correction in which the single stage paint is revived.

Knowledge of the paint, aluminum, and composites material is extremely important. You want to be able to accurately and confidently assess the plane and its surface makeup. On the outside, quality detailing can transform an aircraft’s look but there are always things to be cautious about.

Perhaps the toughest and most demanding detailing process is polishing the aluminum. It’s tricky because there are so many problems that can arise during this process. For example you could damage the clad which could result in an uneven finish.

Take Your Time


Detailing these often massive aircrafts is no joke. The size and magnitude leaves much more room for error then for something like a car or small boat. It’s very important to be thorough and take your time to ensure you don’t miss anything. Give the aircraft a good inspection every so often, don’t be afraid to go over things twice. And as mentioned before there are also a few delicate areas that need to be handled accordingly and should by no means be rushed.

The detailing process can be lengthy but at the end of the day it is more than worth it. Although not always specifically part of the detailing process, things like uv protection and window tint can also be considered. All these seemingly little differences add up and even just the basic removal of grime and dirt can increase the performance of your aircraft. After all it’s yours so why not take care of it? You’re guaranteed to get the most out of it and you’re aircraft will look better. For more helpful articles like this one be sure to visit our other blogs and as always if you would like to learn more about the detailing process or request a visit we’d love to hear from you!