One of life’s ironies is that the more time we spend in our cars, the messier they get, and the less time we have to give them the good clean that they (and we) deserve. Last week, we looked at how you can give your vehicle a five-star clean on the outside. This week, our attention is shifted to your vehicle’s interior.
Step one: grab the bin bag. If your car is fast becoming an oversized version of your handbag, or a bin on wheels, it is easy to just keep adding the mess; after all, what is one more wrapper or coffee cup on top of the countless existing ones? Grab a bin bag and chuck everything that you have been meaning to throw away for weeks, months – or even years! Have a box on the side, too, so that you can put everything that is leaving the car, but not destined for the bin, in there to sort out later. The idea is to completely clear out your car of everything and anything that can go. This includes seat covers, car mats and fluffy dice.
Step two: wash the removable upholstery. Once your mats and covers have been removed, pop the covers in the washing machine and give the mats a good scrub with a brush and hot soapy water. Leave them to dry while you crack on with the rest of the interior.
Step three: vacuum. It is time to say “goodbye” to the countless crumbs festering in your footwell and in the crevices of your seats. Use the nozzle attachment to give the car a really good clean. Keep that binbag nearby so you can avoid clogging the vacuum with larger objects. Don’t forget to get right in between the seats and down the backs, as well as underneath.
Step four: wipe. How you clean your upholstery depends on whether it is fabric, leather, or artificial leather. It can be a good idea to get a specialist cleaning product if you want to be cautious about retaining the condition of the upholstery. For fabric, however, water with a squeeze of washing detergent will give you a lovely finish and leave your car smelling lovely. Go easy on the liquid; you don’t want to soak the seats. For leather, unless there is heavy scuffing and soiling, a wipe over with a damp cloth and a bit of leather spray should be fine.
Step five: polish: A microfibre cloth and some polish spray will make your car sparkle! Don’t forget the console and dashboard but avoid using products on the windscreen as they may smear.
Once you've invested time and effort into cleaning your car's interior, it’s more likely that you will take pride in it and start to remove rubbish as you go. You could even pop a little bin in the car – as long as you remember to empty it! Remember to give your engine the attention it deserves as well and schedule regular servicing at your local garage. If you don’t have time to do it yourself but are desperate to get your car sparkling, check out valeting services near you.