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Published Oct. 4, 2021

You’ve got plenty of car wash soaps and shampoos, buckets and chamois cloths but do you have a set of quality car detailing brushes? When you’re doing the hard work of detailing your car from the inside out, large cloths and harsh scrubbing brushes aren’t the right tools for the job. Instead, you need brushes that can be gentle and scratch-free, while still small enough to get into slim spots, around buttons, and into cracks and crevices. The best car detailing brushes are able to get dirt and debris out of your vehicle’s smallest spaces no matter where those spaces might be located or angled, cleaning those areas you might not get during a normal wash or interior cleaning. Which brushes are the best for this work? We’ve got a list of top car detailing brushes right here.

Best Car Detailing Brush Reviews & Recommendations

The Chemical Guys Goat Boar’s Hair Detailing Brush is one impressive product, from its durable construction to its gentle nature that’s suitable for all kinds of materials. While this brush may seem almost too soft and gentle, it is also very effective at the same time. This means that it gets the balance right of doing a good cleaning job, while not causing scratches to your pride and joy. Constructed with a plastic handle and soft boar’s hair bristles, this is a car detailing brush that’s designed to last you many uses.

In fact, you’ll like it so much, your only problem will be the fact that it’s only available in one size. Versatility is one of the key features of this brush, and it is the type of cleaning product that you can use both inside and outside your vehicle. At the end of the handle is a hole that allows it to be hung up for easy access whenever you need it.

Specs
  • 10-inch long brush, 6.5-inch long plastic handle with a 1.5-inch neck
  • 2-inch boar’s hair bristles
  • Gentle enough to not scratch surfaces
  • Suitable for a range of jobs including cleaning wheels, seats, vents etc
  • Durable handle with a hole for easy storage
PROS

Length is great for everything from your wheels to your center console to your seats

Bristles don’t shed after use

Handle is so tough, it can handle anything

CONS

Only available in one size

If you’re looking to set yourself up with a complete detailing set but don’t want to spend a lot, the SPTA Car Detailing Brush Kit is a great option. With an affordable price and a total of size brushes in various sizes, it’s a set that will have you covered for nearly any need. These brushes are made with plastic handles and synthetic bristles; they’re lightweight and soft on surfaces to prevent any scratches or damage while you work.

For added longevity, each brush’s bristles are set in chemical-resistant epoxy before they’re attached to the tapered handles. From your air vents to your dashboard to your wheels, these brushes can fit into many different crevices, cracks, and spaces. However, there is one potential issue with the brushes in this kit and that’s while the product description calls the bristles boar’s hair with a mix of synthetic fibers, they’re really completely synthetic. This can be frustrating if you’re expecting true boar’s hair bristles.

Specs
  • Includes six brushes of various sizes
  • Plastic handle
  • Synthetic bristles
  • Soft enough to remove dust and dirt without scratching
PROS

Affordable

Various sizes offer total coverage for any detailing spots and spaces

Lightweight handles are comfortable to work with

CONS

Bristles are synthetic, not boar’s hair like description claims

Plastic brush collars can come loose

Invest in the Proper Detailing Co. Natural Boar’s Hair Car Detailing Brush Set, and you’ll get three brushes that are made with longevity in mind. Constructed with premium materials, this set goes beyond your basic brushes and they’re designed to be professional-grade, meaning they can be used daily without wearing or degrading. Each brush features a robust handle paired with natural boar’s hair bristles, which are densely packed and gentle on surfaces of all types.

There’s no metal present anywhere on these brushes, so you won’t have to worry about unwanted marring or scratching. And, when you put these detailing brushes to work, you’ll discover that they don’t shed and are stiff enough to brush out dirt and debris. Over time and frequent use, these brushes will see signs of wear, though. With regular use the bristle may flare out, affecting your ability to get into those crevices easily.

Specs
  • Includes three brushes
  • Densely-packed boar’s hair bristles
  • Metal-free construction
  • Gentle enough for leather, touchscreens, and more
PROS

Three different sizes to choose from

Bristles are dense and true, soft boar’s hair

Stiff enough for tough dirt and debris

CONS

Bristles can flare out over time and with wear

More expensive than other products

Searching for car detailing brushes that can do more than brush away dirt and dust? The Carrand Vent, Dash, and Crevice Detailing Brush Set will have you covered. This three-piece kit comes with different tools for different jobs. First up, you have a dual-sided vent louver detailer. Secondly, you have a dust and crevice brush. Finally, you have the vent and seam detailer. Each tool can handle specific tasks, allowing you to target your detailing work for whatever components you’re dealing with. And this set is particularly great for car dashboards, as these tools can tackle the vents, the small crevices around touchscreens, and get into seams and other tight spaces easily.

Plus, these tools aren’t limited to your car interior as they can also be used around the home as well. Unfortunately, there are areas in which these tools could be improved. The brush features synthetic bristles that can be too harsh for delicate surfaces, so you’ll want to use it with caution. And because these car detailing tools are made from plastic, breakage can happen.

Specs
  • Includes three individual tools
  • One two-sided vent louver detailer
  • One dust and crevice brush
  • One vent and seam detailer
  • Plastic handles
PROS

Offers more variety and versatility than brushes alone

Specialized tools are ideal for cleaning dashboards and vents

Made for the tightest, slimmest spaces

CONS

Plastic components can break with wear, force, and time

Brush bristles are synthetic and not soft

Bristles may scratch delicate surfaces

The Detail Buddy Natural Boar Hair Detailing Brush is more than just a simple brush as it’s actually a set of three high-quality soft brushes that are made for the most delicate surfaces of your vehicle. But just because these car detailing brushes are soft doesn’t mean they can’t stand up to dirt, debris, and even potential damage. They’re able to survive even the toughest cleaning solutions and chemicals, including seriously strong wheel cleaners and iron-removing sprays. The natural boar’s hair bristles, which stand 2 inches long on each brush, are solvent-resistant to last a long time. Each brush also offers a different size to suit different tasks and you’ll get one 1-inch, one 1.25-inch, and one 1.5-inch brush.

And while you work with these detailing tools, you don’t have to worry about scratches on metal, soft leather, or other materials or finishes. However, you may want to sand down the handles of these brushes before working with them as they arrive unfinished and slightly rough, which may make them uncomfortable to use bare-handed. Additionally, while the bristles are solvent-resistant, they can’t survive everything and heavily acidic cleaners, like bleach, may cause them to degrade.

Specs
  • Includes three brushes
  • 2-inch long boar’s hair bristles
  • Wood handles
  • No metal components
PROS

Boar’s hair bristles are soft enough for leather, finishes, and metals

Solvent-resistant bristles offer great longevity

Includes multiple brush sizes

CONS

Brush handles arrive unfinished and may need sanding

Bristles cannot withstand harsh chemicals like bleach very well

The Subang Car Cleaner Detailing Brush Set is one seriously complete and comprehensive kit. It’s more than your basic car detailing brush or brush set and includes both brushes and a vent cleaning tool, plus wire brushes made for tougher jobs. You’ll get gentleness for cleaning most of your interior (and your wheels), along with extra tools for particularly problematic spots or messes. With six different brush sizes to choose from, you’ll have every size you could need on the job and each brush is made out of boar’s hair bristles and a wood handle, and the handles include holds for easy hanging.

The vent cleaning tool is made of plastic, and the wire brushes feature wire bristles and plastic handles. You’ll be able to tackle everything from your seats to your wheels to your dashboard. The only potential drawback to this set of car detailing brushes? Some brushes may experience quality issues, like the heads or bristles falling apart. However, the set is backed by a satisfaction guarantee, so if these problems do appear you can turn to that.

Specs
  • 11-piece car cleaner brush set
  • Six different brush sizes for different cleaning jobs
  • Brushes feature boar’s hair bristles and wood handles
  • Includes vent cleaning tool
  • Includes wire brushes for tougher stains
  • Backed by a satisfaction guarantee
PROS

Includes a wealth of detailing and cleaning tools

Tools are compact yet comfortable to work with

Able to handle jobs both delicate and tough with the variety of tools

CONS

Some sets may experience quality issues

How We Selected Detailing Brushes

In order to find the best car detailing brushes available, we took a look at the many different product options available online. We considered both individual detailing brushes and whole-car brush sets and we compared all of the products based on a set of particular features and details. The best brushes or brush sets needed to have delicate bristles and durable handles, while still being stiff and effective enough to remove dirt. We also looked for brushes that offered versatility and could be used throughout the interior (and on wheels). Factors like potential bristle shedding, handle separation or breakage, and scratch-causing materials helped us eliminate less-than-quality options.

Our product selections, rankings, and awards for this story are based on research. While we haven’t conducted real-world testing on all of these products yet, we’ve looked at consumer testimonials and data, tutorials, and general discussions on social media and in forums. We also consider price and specification in the context of the segment. And, of course, we rely on our institutional knowledge of the automotive landscape to weed out weak products.

Buying Guide/What to Look For 

Do you know how to pick out the perfect car detailing brushes? While there are plenty of different brushes and brush sets available to choose from, it’s not always a super simple process. We’ve got your guide to comparing different brushes, looking for key features, and finding exactly what you need for your car.

What to Consider When Buying Car Detailing Brushes

Types of Car Detailing Brushes

Woolly Brushes

Woolly brushes are a softer, more specialized kind of car detailing brush. These brushes are designed for your wheels — which can easily be scratched by brushes that are too harsh or stiff — and your air vents. With extremely soft brush heads, bristles, or even microfiber cloths at their cleaning ends, woolly brushes can dust away dirt and debris without any risk of causing unsightly damage. They can even be used on soft leather seats. 

Small Brushes

Meant for cleaning and detailing your seats, emblems, steering wheel, buttons, and other difficult-to-clean components, small brushes are exactly as they sound, and their bristles get into small spaces easily. Some small brushes may have seam cleaning tools at one end, which is a pointed or angled tip that can dig dirt out of seat seams and very thin crevices.

Carpet and Upholstery Brushes

If you’ve got interior carpet and upholstery (typically excluding leather) to clean inside your car, carpet and upholstery brushes are the right pick. These brushes are rougher than other detailing options, and they’re designed to remove even the most deeply embedded dirt. This brush variety often includes a handle so you can really apply force while you’re scrubbing. 

Grille and Body Brushes

Lastly, if you’re doing exterior detail work, you’ll need grille and body brushes. These detailing brushes tend to have a head that’s equipped with either soft nylon bristles or rubber bristles. They get to work removing caked-on dirt while still being gentle to your exterior trim, metal, and paint. Grill brushes in particular are especially great for getting inside your car’s grille and its tiniest, tightest open spaces.

Car Detailing Brush Key Features

Material

Car detailing brushes are made of different materials, and they’re suited for different areas. Nylon brushes offer a high level of durability and resistance. The soft bristles are safe for all surfaces and highly absorbent. You can also get harder bristles for a more thorough cleaning job. Wire brushes attract a lot of dust and grime, and they’re useful for surfaces such as batteries and stainless steel. As for microfiber brushes, these are great for removing dust and dirt without leaving scratches behind. The material is also sturdy and strong.

Single or Multiple Brushes

Some of the products listed above just include a single brush, others include a set of three, whereas you can even get as many as 11 individual tools. Perhaps you are only looking for a single tool, or you need an entire set. Ultimately, the choice is yours.

Shape and Size

Brushes are available in different shapes and sizes. Make a choice depending on whether you plan on cleaning the interior or exterior of your vehicle. If you want maximum access to all areas of your car, choose a brush that has a long handle and bristles.

Durability

There is no point in getting a car dust brush that falls apart at the first sign of trouble. When you choose a durable product, you are making a strong investment as you know that it is going to last longer.

Brand

The brand of the product is another important consideration that is worth making. Big name brands are easier to research, and you can get a better indication of the quality of the product. If you are going to invest in a product from a brand that is unknown, you should check the customer reviews to get a better indication of what other people have had to say about it in the past.

Cost

Most brushes are relatively affordable and you don’t have to invest much. But also bear in mind that you also want a brush that is good enough to last for a long time as you don’t want it to fall apart after only a few uses. Otherwise, the money you saved will only end up going towards a new brush.

Car Detailing Brush Tips and Tricks

As with something you do for decades upon decades, you pick up a few tips and tricks along the way in terms of selecting the right product, and/or using it. That’s the case with us and car detailing brushes. To help you bridge the information gap, here’s a selection of what we’ve learned along the way.

  • A lot of people make the mistake of starting from the bottom of their vehicle and working their way up. But if you start by cleaning the carpet, whatever falls down from the rest of your detailing activity will only end up there eventually, and you’ll have to do the job over again. Start with the upper components first.
  • The air vents inside your car can collect a lot of dust, so don’t forget about a brush or tool to clean them. Microfiber cloth is a great option. If you want the vents to look especially new, you can lightly use some spray-on vinyl dressing.
  • Use a stiffer brush for carpets. Stiffer bristles are better for getting dirt out and if you have your vacuum to hand, you can suck up everything that you dislodge easily.
  • Clean the wheels last. The wheel rims collect a huge amount of dirt, grease, and grime, so use your brush to get into all the nooks and crannies around the wheels.

FAQs

Q: How do you clean car detailing brushes?

Once you’ve cleared away and collected dirt with your detailing brushes, you can clean them for your next use by rinsing them in warm water. If you’d like, you can add a gentle cleanser or soap, just double-check that the soap you’re using is safe for softer materials like natural boar’s hair.

Q: Do you have to use specialized car detailing brushes?

Technically, you don’t have to use car detailing brushes to effectively detail your car’s interior or exterior. However, these brushes are specifically made for vehicles and the types of materials they feature, from leather to metal trims and finishes to buttons to air vents. While you can use an old toothbrush, paint brushes, or cotton swabs, true car detailing brushes will get the job done most effectively.

Final Thoughts

Our top pick for the best car detailing brush is the Chemical Guys Goat Boar’s Hair Detailing Brush, a product that offers just the right balance of effective dirt removal and gentleness. However, the SPTA Car Detailing Brush Kit is another great option and offers multiple brushes for solid value. Which car detailing brushes are your favorites to work with?

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