How To Clean A Car Interior the Right Way

When was the last time you cleaned the interior of your car? Probably a long time ago. Most car owners somehow neglect the dusty front panel, stained seats, dirty floor mats, and smudged windows.

Nevertheless, given the amount of time individuals spend inside their vehicles, every driver is supposed to keep the interior pristine. If you can’t afford to pay for professional car detailing, no one can prevent you from cleaning the auto on your own. Vacuuming the carpets, washing the seats, wiping the windows, and dusting the front panel will help you remove all the dust, dirt, and grime.

Keep in mind these handy tips the next time you decide to roll up your sleeves and clean the auto.

Get the right supplies and tools

Prior to cleaning the interior, it’s paramount to be complete with the necessary supplies and tools for the job. Start by purchasing a variety of cleaning agents that match the type of surfaces you need to clean. For instance, you’d probably have to buy leather, upholstery, window, and vinyl cleaner.

In terms of wiping and polishing materials, always have a variety of towels and rags, which are meant for cleaning different surfaces. It’s vital to have paper towels, disinfectant wipes, and numerous microfiber cloths. These cloths made from microfiber are incredibly popular among car owners, as one doesn’t have to worry about scratching the surface.

When it comes to tools, car owners are advised to get brushes of different sizes, designed for dusting inaccessible areas like air vents. For example, stiff-bristled scrub brushes and cotton swabs are believed to be incredibly efficient for detailed cleaning. Also, you’d need a sponge, bucket, and duster for scrubbing and dusting the upholstery.

Perhaps the most powerful tool for interior detailing is the vacuum cleaner, used for cleaning the floor and carpets, as well as vacuuming the upholstery. In case you don’t have a car detailing vacuum at your disposal, investing in one would make the interior cleaning process more convenient and less time-consuming. There’s a variety of corded and portable models, equipped with hand-held attachments for better access to surfaces.

Clean the carpets and floor mats

Floor mats and carpets are the most demanding aspect of interior detailing, as these are more prone to dirt and grime. Remove the mats in order to shake the built-up dirt but if shaking isn’t enough, use a stiff-bristled scrub brush to remove the grime stuck between the grooves. You can also wash them down with a cleaner as long as it doesn’t cause a slippery effect.

After taking care of the mats, make sure you use the hand attachments of the vacuum cleaner to vacuum the carpets. In case your carpets need more than just vacuuming, you’re advised to purchase a carpet cleaner that not only removes stains but spreads a pleasant smell inside the vehicle. Once you spray the carpets with the product, wait for approximately thirty minutes for the detergent to act before rinsing.

Clean the seats

The next step on the interior detailing agenda is taking care of the seats by applying a suitable cleaning method. For instance, leather seats are the trickiest when it comes to keeping them clean. It’s normal for leather to become darker over time, as it quickly absorbs dirt and grime. Spray the seats with a leather cleaner and rub them with a clean towel. Afterward, use a microfiber cloth to dry them and a leather conditioner to make them shiny.

Unlike leather, vinyl seats are a piece of cake to clean, requiring no special attention from car owners. Use a vinyl cleaner to spray the seats, as well as a rag for wiping the surface. Remember not to dry them with the same cloth, but use a clean one.

Moreover, there’s an extensive range of upholstery cleaners for cloth seats, which differ in terms of cleaning benefits. In case your seats are covered with stains, always have a  a stain remover on hand, as the multipurpose cleaner might not do the trick. If your intention is to eliminate the unpleasant upholstery smell, look for an odor elimination spray. Anyhow, avoid using liquid cleaners in large amounts to prevent the spread of a musty smell.

Clean the windows and side mirrors

Windows and mirrors are an essential consideration in the course of interior detailing. All you need is a glass cleaner and a microfiber cloth to make the glass look crystal clean. Instead of spraying the cleaning agent on the glass surface, spray it on the rag first. As a result, you won’t be annoyed by streaks, which tend to be the most frustrating to car owners. Click here to check out some helpful tips for cleaning car windows.

As you’re supposed to clean both the interior and exterior side of the windows, never miss wiping the former horizontally, whereas the latter vertically. Consequently, if streaks appear on either side, you’ll immediately guess on which side they are. In case you’re interested in using a DIY cleaning agent, try wiping the glass with a combination of white vinegar and water.

Don’t forget the front panel

The front panel is undoubtedly the most challenging area to clean inside a vehicle, given the myriad of buttons, controls, vents, and other details. The dashboard is known to collect a tremendous amount of dust, which you’re advised to clean by using some of the handheld attachments of your vacuum cleaner. In contrast, the console is best cleaned with the help of cotton swabs. There’s no other way to reach the crevices and clean them from the inside.

Ultimately, air vents aren’t supposed to be neglected when cleaning the front panel. Never forget to dust them with a bristle brush and blow the remaining dust with the assistance of compressed air. These tools provide maximal cleanliness for an affordable price.

Bottom line

Regular interior detailing is crucial for better comfort when driving.

Enjoy the pleasant smell and pristine surfaces!


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