Re: What should be included in standard exterior detail
Only polish if it needs it. Clay for sure, but if they don't know what they are doing, they'll mar the paint and it will need polished. Sometimes after I clay, if it's a brand new car, I'll use my lightest polish with a finishing pad and that helps prep the paint too for an ultra smooth finish. I always wipe the car down after polish before applying sealant or wax with Isopropyl alcohol or something similar for better bonding to the paint. Here's my regiment for a "new car" detail;
-Under hood cleaning-I mix simple green/dawn
-Clean around door edges-simple green/dawn
-Wheels/Tires-simple green/dawn/tire cleaner
-Dawn wash the car
-Maintenance soap wash all painted surface
-Polish if needed
-IPA or Gtechniq Panel Wipe to prep regardless of polish or not all surfaces...glass, plastic, paint
-Last step product options...
22PLE, Detailers Pro Paint Coating or Gtechniq Glass coatings-2years or more protection
Blackfire Wet Diamond Sealant, Dodo Juice Supernatural Hybrid(sealer/wax combo) or Esoteric Signature Series Wax(sealer/wax combo) all my favorites-3-5months protection
Or Carnauba wax of their choice-4-6 weeks protection
I also treat the glass-Gtechniq G1, or Detailers Pro Glass Coating(for glass)
and the wheels with whatever was used on the paint. I also do all the door edges and under the hood, any painted surface, all plastic surfaces are treated as well.
Ask them what products they use, most "auto store" stuff isn't worth the packaging it's in IMO. I'm also very anal about my cars...not everyone seals/waxes their door edges and under the hood. There are lots of options, I've moved to the glass coatings(22PLE/Gtechniq) for longevity and they really are easy to use and they help reduce scratches from drying, bird crap etching, etc. Check out DetailedImage or AutoGeek. Ask if you can watch, sometimes they just run a machine with a "one step" product over it, vacuum, put some tire shine on and rape your wallet. Good luck.
If you were born here, you're American, no colors, no races...know your heritage and be proud of it, but act like an American, or go to the nearest coast or border...AND LEAVE!!