What started as a side job has become a lucrative full-time business for Jared Porter.
The 26-year-old man from Burlington launched Porters Mobile Detailing in July 2020 after learning that he would become a father.
“I worked for a place called Wilderness Land Management and then I realized I was going to be a father and I just wanted extra money,” Porter told The Hawk Eye on Wednesday from his garage on South 10th Street, where he spent the afternoon cleaning the interior. on the Chevy Silverado 2500.
Porter has always had the skill to clean vehicles, starting with his own. His grandparents, Marlene and Kevin Murphy, encouraged him to start a detail business since graduating from high school in Burlington in 2014, but initially chose to do landscaping before taking up car sales for Billion Auto in Iowa. You are.
From there, he took on rainwater repairs for Apex Companies in Urbandale, but later decided to return home to be closer to the family.
About two weeks after returning to Burlington, he and his girlfriend, Libby Magle, learned that they would have a child.
So Porter went to Lowe’s and bought an electric washer, generator, vacuum cleaner and steam, along with cleaning chemicals from O’Reilly Auto Parts, and began attracting customers.
One of his earliest occupations was washing and waxing Cessna 210. His customer base grew rapidly and included semi-trucks, combines, tractors, campers, boats and many cars and trucks.
On August 22, 2020, he decided to leave his job to run his full-time business.
“I started letting it go and then it started to rise,” Porter said. “It was definitely a big risk, but it worked out.”
His son Zaire was born on October 5, 2020, and Porter is happy to just go inside and spend time with him and Magel while taking a vacation. Zaire, now nearly 20 months old, also loves helping his father in the garage.
As the business continued to grow, he was able to purchase additional equipment, including a 275-gallon water tank in the trailer, which he carries for mobile jobs, such as those involving multiple or larger vehicles. He also found a distributor in Mount Pleasant for his cleaning chemicals.
On average, he describes three vehicles a day, sometimes with the help of friends Romeo Maestro and PJ Jones.
The time it takes for a vehicle depends on the mess and the package.
It has an interior package starting at $ 125 that includes a complete vacuum cleaning; shampoo and / or skin condition; steam cleaning; dashboard, door panels and upholstery; windows; door jams; and air fresheners, which can take up to three and a half hours.
“We inspect the doors and fill them with plastic and leather cleaners and inspect them for skin or interior shine,” Porter said.
The complete details package starts at $ 140 and includes everything in the interior package, as well as exterior washing, foam condition, spray wax, wheels and tires and windows. Washing is done with microfiber towels.
The luxury detail, starting at $ 300, includes everything in the full package, plus clay tape and hand wax.
Customers can also receive a paint / paint correction of $ 300, as well as a ceramic coating, the price of which varies depending on the vehicle.
“Our goal is to make the vehicle look like you just removed it from the showroom floor,” Porter said.
Evidence from photos of his work before and after, shared on his Facebook business page, this goal was achieved when he finished.
“It makes them look like new,” Porter’s family friend Linda Robinson told The Hawk Eye.
His favorite professions include the Ford GT and the completely restored 1947 Chevrolet.
The most challenging so far was the towed semi-trailer. The cabin, Porter recalled, was littered with garbage to the point that it required shovels and the use of rubber gloves and face masks.
“It was absolutely dirty,” Porter said. “We had to throw everything away. We ended up filling an entire garbage can. It smelled like someone died there.”
Porter is not sure if that was the case. He has never met the driver.
As the business continues to grow, Porter is considering buying a store that can hold large vehicles. At present, these works must be done at the mercy of the weather during the day.
Those who want to schedule an appointment can do so by calling or texting Porter at (319) 601-0046, or via Facebook by sending messages to Porters Mobile Detailing.
Michaele Niehaus covers business, development, the environment and agriculture for The Hawk Eye. It can be found at [email protected]