Sick of the food crumbs, snack residue and other dirt in your car? In this article, you will learn how to clean your car interior like a pro.
Some minutes and a few cleaning materials are all you need to make it all go away.
Why Clean Your Car Yourself?
- Professional cleaning comes at a higher cost.
- By doing it yourself, you’ll have more control over the cleaning process.
Cleaning Supplies and Materials Needed
- A bucket of clean water (not too cold)
- A vacuum cleaner with attachments
- Foam brush or old toothbrush
- Rubbing (isopropyl) alcohol
- Microfiber cleaning cloths
- A stiff scrub brush
- Window cleaner
- Liquid dish soap
How to Clean Your Car Interior Like a Professional
#1. Start With the Floor Mats
The first thing to do is to remove any empty bottles, nylon, paper and other noticeable litter you can find. After that, you should take out your floor mats and prepare to wash them.
First, shake them to remove large crumbs and other dirty stuff that might have lodged inside. Use the vacuum to lift any small dirt that may have been embedded in your mats.
If your floor mats are made of rubber, vinyl or silicone (not carpeted), you should proceed by using a water hose to wash away excess dirt and soil.
If you don’t have a water hose, you can do it the old way. Get a bucket of water and use your scrub brush to clean the floor mats. When you’re done, you should use another bucket of water to rinse clean.
The floor mats are clean. You just completed a step.
#2. Use Your Vacuum Cleaner
There will always be places in your car that will be hard to clean unless you remove the seats. As that’s not an option, you’ll have to get a vacuum cleaner.
It can reach more places and clean out small dirt. Run the vacuum cleaner throughout the interior of your car, like the space between your windshield and dashboard.
You should also run it over the seats to clean the small bits of dirt and crumbs that may have lodged within. Let’s move to the dashboard.
#3. Don’t Forget the Car Dashboard
The most common dirt in car dashboards is dust particles. This should not be done with a vacuum. Use a microfiber cloth (duster) to clear the dust away.
The reason why we suggest microfiber cloth is that it won’t scratch your dashboard. Also, it will capture dust particles, instead of spreading them around your vehicle.
Although cleaning is enough, you can always take a step further to disinfect. A disinfecting wipe will kill any germs and bacteria residing on your dashboard.
#4. What About the Console?
Now you have to be careful here. Your car console is that place in the middle where you can find the infotainment panel, media controls and the like.
Since it’s mostly electronics, water is a big no. You also avoid using ammonia-based cleaning products here. Clean your console with a dry cloth or a microfiber cloth lightly dampened with distilled water.
#5. Clean the Cupholders, Door Panels, and Steering Wheel
The steering wheel, door panels and cupholders are frequently touched places in your car. Use a sponge or soft brush to scrub their surfaces.
You should also disinfect them all, except the cupholder. If the latter is removable, you should wash and rinse in dishwashing soap.
Now you’re one step closer to completing the cleaning process
#6. Continue With the Interior Windows
This one is pretty straightforward. You should use two microfiber cloths; one for initial cleaning and the other for wiping the glass clean.
#7. At Last, the Car Seats
Start by attaching a hose to your vacuum and using it to remove dirt particles and food crumbs. If the seats are made of leather, use a compatible cleaning product.
If the seats are made of cloth, you should get a stain removal product and an upholstery cleaner.
When you’re done, rinse the product away with a microfiber cloth dipped in water. As a precaution, you should avoid soaking the seat with water, as wet seats attract microbes.
Blot away excess water with a dry towel and allow the seats to air dry. Now you’re done. You just cleaned your car interior like a professional.
#8. Give Your Car a New Smell
What scent do people smell when they enter your car for the first time?
You can always get an air freshener, either solid or spray type. Vent clips and dashboard air fresheners can be placed over the vents.
Tree-style and other air fresheners can be made to hang from the rearview mirror. You can also put them under the dash where occupants put their legs.
Wrapping Up: How to Clean Your Car Interior Like a Professional
Now that you’ve cleaned your car interior like a pro, you should adopt certain behaviours that will ensure it stays clean (for as long as it can, or till you can find time to clean again).
Your driving conditions and lifestyle will determine how often you’ll need to clean your car. If you carry kids and/or pets in your car regularly, then you’ll have more cleaning to do.
Note that some places in your car will need more cleaning than the other parts. Examples of such include the interior windows and insides of the windshields.
Here are a few tips from AB Drives on how you can make your car clean for as long as possible.
- Always have a few basic cleaning materials tucked in your boot. Some stains and dirt require cleaning immediately, and if you can’t find any cleaning supplies ASAP it can be harder to wipe later on.
- Get a trash can for your car. That way, all food coverings, snack wraps, random papers, drink bottles and litter won’t get tossed around.
- Carpeted floor mats are not the most ideal coverings for your car floors. You should get rubber floor mats, which will protect your car from stains and water.
- Don’t treat your car as a storage hub. Instead, always see it as a means of transport and comfort.