If you have some time after work or on the weekend and want to enjoy some fresh air while staying safe at home, pull your car out of the garage and get to cleaning!
From cleaning the carpets to dusting out the vents, here are some pro tips to get back that new-car feel!
Take a systematic approach
Your car’s interior sees a lot of traffic coming in and out, which means you’ll need to tackle each area carefully. Depending on how you use your car, certain spots will get more traffic than others. If you ride alone, it’ll be the driver’s seat. If you have kids, the backseats are likely to take the worst of it.
Before getting into that deep clean, prep the interior first by:
Pulling out your floor mats
Wiping down vinyl, leather and plastic surfaces with a damp cloth
Picking up trash and emptying the storage consoles
Use the right cleaners
First off, never use dish soap. Although it’ll remove dirt and wax, it can also strip your car’s finish. Instead, use a cleaner meant for vehicles.
You’ll likely need different cleaners for different areas like plastic dashboards, glass windows and alloy wheels. Choose products with easy application that won’t stain.
Work from top to bottom
You may be tempted to start with the carpets, but don’t do it! You’ll get them dirty again as you clean upper surfaces. Start at the top and work your way down instead.
Vacuum the ceiling, dash and inside of storage consoles
Clean the windows
Sweep out vents and cracks using a detailing brush
Vacuum the seats; slide them forward so you can get underneath as well
Use a protectant to polish the dashboard, steering wheel and door panels
Unless you’ve had your car professionally detailed, you probably haven’t heard of clay-barring. This trick uses a special compound to pluck years of grime and dirt from your car’s exterior. And the good news is, you don’t need a pro to do this for you.
Purchase a clay-bar kit, which includes detailing lubricant, a microfibre cloth and the actual clay. After lubricating the surface, slowly move the clay bar along the body. It will pick up particles bonded to the paint and frame. You’ll know you’re finished when the clay stops gripping the surface, and glides across smoothly.