We are Cognoscenti Car Care
The realisation of a dream and a vision by me, Dominic Aslett. 3 years in the making, of training with some of the most skilled people in our industry. tutelage under Kelly Harris of the world-renowned KDS Keltec, Judy Bass ‘leather guru’ of LTT Leathercare and Matt Rowe of Obsidian Detailing, who has become a mentor to us and is widely regarded among his peers.
Place your trust in us to care for your vehicle, as if it was our own. have peace of mind that we are fully insured to cover every aspect of working on your vehicle, storing overnight, road liability and covering every eventuality. we take the security of your property seriously and have CCTV and an alarm connected to a smartphone 24/7.
We only select the finest products from the likes of Carpro, Rupes, Meguiars, Swissvax, Detailing Kingdom (DK), KKD and LTT, among others. Allow us to Perfect, Protect and Preserve.
What Is Detailing?
Automotive Detailing? What is it?
Well, that would depend on which part of the world you reside.
In America, it would usually cover a wide range of car cleaning, which in the UK we would usually refer to as valeting.
The word detailing has become somewhat fashionable as of late. Some detailers would even cringe at being put in the same category as Valeters, when, in truth, they may not clean cars to the same standard a Valeter might.
Some Valeters call themselves detailers because they claim they can complete 3 stages of polishing in just a day, perhaps even at your home or place of work, that’s convenient for you! To us, detailing means to go above and beyond. the extra mile. 110%. to have your cake and eat it to!
Why just clean your wheels, when you can remove them from the car and clean the back? Oh look, the brake calliper is looking a bit grubby, lemme fix that! Let’s remove the tar from the wheel arch and dress that. “I’ve got some swirls in my paint that I covered up just last month! oh well I suppose it has been washed a couple of times since then, and the car wash on the way home from work is kinda convenient”. Let’s get the machine polishers out and remove those permanently!
After we’ve carefully measured the depth of paint on every panel of the car first of course. A sponge and a bucket are all my dad used to use. Thankfully we’ve come quite some way since his days. If you think that all it could take to do damage to your cars paintwork is 1 grain of grit between the sponge and the surface of your car. It has nowhere to go, trapped between 2 surfaces being dragged along for the soapy ride. We use only the finest, plush lambswool wash media, 3 buckets, 3 grit guards, and a measured amount of the best shampoo we can lay our hands on. Have you ever felt your cars paint? Grab a thin plastic bag, place your hand inside and gently wipe your fingertips along the car, does it feel rough? If it does its due to the face it’s heavily contaminated. Industrial and airborne fallout, tree sap, tar spots, iron deposits from the use of hot brakes, kicked up from that car in front of you, that can also embed into your windscreen aswell by the way. It needs decontaminating, chemically with the correct products and physically with the aid of a clay bar and lubrication to prevent marring. We could easily take half a day just to correctly cleanse the exterior of your car, and then its time to bring it inside, into what we like to call the ‘surgery’.
We consider what we do to be surgical, our clean sterile environment. We perform surgery on your cars exterior and interior, removing its wrinkles if you would! All sensitive areas are covered up, and the paint is carefully measured in multiple areas.
Machine polishing should take time, it cannot be rushed. You could simply contact us and say “my friend had a 3 stage correction on his car, I want that”. Well, how old is your car? What’s the condition of the paint? Do you wash it yourself? How do you know it needs a ‘3 stage correction’? Upon inspection, we may be able to achieve 75-80% improvement in clarity, depth and gloss levels with our enhancement detail.
How does that sound?
It’s far too simplistic, and to us incorrect, to categorise into 1,2, or 3 stages. A single stage polish, with heavier isolated work, perhaps on random deep scratches (RDS), may be considered a 2 stage correction. To us, that’s just an enhancement. We are ‘enhancing’ the paintwork. Somebodies 3 stage, full-blown, uninhibited, the dogs danglys complete correction, may just be what we consider our heavy enhancement.
A correction to us is just that. To correct all wrongs, to return something to its original state, as safely as possible. It all comes down to what you, our client, wants to achieve. What are your expectations? Do you want your friends to be jealous of how amazing your car looks in the sun? or, perhaps you’ve stopped turning around to look at your car as you walk away from it, (admit it, you did it). Do you want to enter your pride and joy into a Concours event? Whatever you’re aiming to achieve, we will strive to meet it (and secretly try to exceed it).
Protection? Does your car even need it?
In truth, the answer is no, unless you want to keep it in perfect condition and help to retain its value of course.
Waxes, natural or synthetic, sealants, nanocoatings, glass coatings, ceramic coatings, there’s so much out there, it all becomes a bit confusing.
We prefer to break it down into how long you expect the protection to last. With the correct application and aftercare, natural waxes can last between a week and 3 months (give or take). Synthetic waxes can usually last slightly longer, let’s say 3-4 months. Sealants 4-6 months. Coatings can last between 12-36 months. There are some that can achieve upto 5-7 years durability and, of course, dealerships that offer ‘lifetime’ protection.
Let’s just touch on that real quick. That day you ordered your brand new car, that excitement! The salesman sold you a protection package for your car’s exterior and interior. Maybe he said you won’t even need to wash your car? Remember, they are trained to sell cars (and they’re good at it) not look after them.
Weeks later you receive an email informing you your car has been built. It sits in an open car park, subject to the elements. Then, after that, it begins it’s long journey to the dealership. It may have travelled by train, collecting all manner of fallout and contamination. Maybe it travelled by boat, salt water corroding away at your pride and joy. Maybe both! By the time it arrives at the dealership, its covered in god knows what. It needs to have several hours of methodical deep cleaning with the correct products. But, the dealership is pushed for time, the transport lorry might have carried half a dozen new cars, so, it gets a quick clean, and the ‘lifetime’ products are applied by the same person who gave your last car a courtesy wash and hoover while it was being serviced.
The truth is, these products are probably OK but, they are put on by people who aren’t given enough time or training to properly prepare the cars before applying them.
We love waxes! the warmth from an expertly hand crafted carnauba wax is something of a pure indulgence, the reason concours winners are wearing them and if you were to happen to pick up the odd swirl mark along the way, then an enhancement detail can put that right. Do you enjoy waxing and caring for your car, but maybe its got some swirls or a few love marks? Perhaps you want a professional to restore it to its former glory, lay down some rich carnauba wax and you can maintain it. If thats the case then a ceramic coating isnt for you. Coatings have a far superior lifespan. They become the 2nd clear coat on your paint. Largely offering self-cleaning capabilities, detergent resistant. Partially resistant to scratches, bird etching and acid rain (but not bullet proof). Top that with a wax, and that then becomes the top layer, masking most of the performance of the said coating.
If you want to make cleaning your car easier, then a coating is the option you need. They do still require proper maintenance and care, however, and in the right hands, your car will be in optimum condition for many years. But they do have their downsides. With improper care, any swirls or scratches put into the paint after an application is harder to remove, thats because the coating is that hard that some require wetsanding to remove. The paint is left dull and flat and requires multiple hits of machine polishing to correct. lets say you’ve chosen a 5 year warranted coating from an accredited company. They usually require yearly inspections at an additional fee, or the warranty is void. They may top up the protection year after year for you because the coating isnt performing to the standard it was when first applied. If it has to have additinal coats applied to last 5 years, then is it even a 5 year warranted coating? These are things that you, our client, should think about.
At Cognoscenti Car Care, we do not PAY into an organisation or company to be accredited or associated. We represent ourselves.
You won’t find nameless faces working on numerous cars. We treat you how we would want to be treated. We are entirely independant with zero ties to any organisation or company. We are friendly, approachable, professional, down to earth, and above all else, honest.