Cleaning the interior of your car is important for maintenance and value. It can extend the life of leather, vinyl, plastic, and other components. Doing it yourself can be surprisingly inexpensive and straightforward. Follow these simple steps on how to clean the inside of your car to make your driving a more pleasant experience.
Cleaning Materials needed:
- Vacuum Cleaner
- Cleaning Products
- Wiping and Polishing Materials
1. Take everything non-essential out of your vehicle.
Begin by removing any items in your car that will impede cleaning. Gather all the trash from the floorboards, cup holders, and door and seat pockets and recycle or dispose of it. Remove car seats, toys, and other items that have been left in the car.
2. Use a soft microfiber cloth and water with mild soap to clean vinyl, rubber, and plastic to clean your car front panel.
This includes your center console, doors, floors, dashboard, or other areas. To make yourself a specialized implement to clean the tightest spots and grooves on your console, simply wrap a cloth around the tip of a flat-head screwdriver. The key is to use the thinnest cloth possible
3. Vacuum everything you can
First, vacuum the carpet completely. Use the brush attachment and various nozzles of different shapes and sizes to clean crevices and areas around the seats. Second, remove the floor mats and vigorously shake the dirt loose. If a good shake is not enough, try loosening grime with a stiff brush. Clean between the grooves with your vacuum cleaner’s bare hose nozzle. Once all the mats are dirt-free, wash them out with a strong jet of water from your garden hose. Allow them to air-dry completely.
4. Clean your leather seats.
Use a clean rag and leather cleaner to wipe down all seating, then apply a leather conditioner (Allow a couple of hours for the leather to dry thoroughly) Most leather-cleaning compounds must be sprayed or applied to the seat, worked into the material by rubbing with a towel. If using a towel, make sure to flip it often so that you are constantly using the clean side. Once the cleaning process is complete, dry the seats with a microfiber cloth.
5. Clean all the windows from the inside and outside.
Dampen a microfibre towel with a window cleaner. Scrub the windows. Polish with a firm circular motion. *When cleaning windows and mirrors, spray the cleaner on the cloth (rather than on the glass itself) to reduce streaking. This will also avoid getting cleaner on other parts of your car that may be damaged by harsh chemicals.
6. Air out your car seats.
If you have used a lot of cleaning products in your seats, it is a good idea to air out the car.
7. Install an air freshener.
Lingering odors, especially those caused by cigarette smoke and pets, can be difficult to remove. Fortunately, there are some great odor removal products on the market. If you like to use fragrances in your car, you can spray or install a new air freshener product. Finally, if your car still smells stale, sprinkle the carpet and cloth seats with dry baking soda. Let it remain overnight and then vacuum it away.
Keeping the interior in its best shape will help the car last longer and retain its value when you sell or trade it in.