When you think of seasonal cleaning, you probably consider your kitchen, bedroom, and maybe even your storage unit or your garage. But if you drive to work—or put considerable mileage on your car for pleasure—it’s important to put some elbow grease into your ride at least once per quarter. Here’s exactly how to deep-clean your car (and maybe actually enjoy your commute!).
How To Deep Clean The Inside Of Your Car
How to Clean Your Leather or Cloth Seats
No matter what kind of seats you have, they’re likely in need of a good scrubbing—especially if you have any set-in stains to deal with. Garment Groom is specifically formulated to spot-treat upholstery (like cloth seats) and our Leather Cleaner works beautifully on vinyl or leather seats by dissolving surface dirt and grime, and protects your seats from future cracking, water damage, scuffs, and scratches.
How to Clean Your Car's Carpet
After you’re done vacuuming any obvious dirt or debris from the car’s carpets, go in with a more targeted cleaner. In addition to using Garment Groom on cloth seats, it’s great at handling any set-in stains on your car’s carpets, too. Take a small brush like a toothbrush or our Pot Brush to scrub away any dirt or stains, and for anything major that needs a good shampooing. A small amount of Laundry Detergent diluted in a bucket is gentle enough to keep the carpet intact while washing away debris (and any lingering odours)!
How to Clean Your Console & Dashboard
This is usually the trickiest part of cleaning your car, especially if you commonly eat or drink inside it. First, take everything out of your console, including any spare change, hair ties, or old wrappers that tend to build up. Instead of starting with a duster, spray some All-Purpose Cleaner on a clean cloth, then give all surfaces a thorough rub-down. If the idea of using dozens of Q-tips to get into the hard-to-reach crevices seems overwhelming, try using an old Dish Brush: Its soft-but-sturdy natural fiber bristles can get into small spaces and loosen up any dirt or debris.
Some dashboards are wrapped in “leather,” so finish with a full wipe-down with Leather Cleaner, which will condition and protect all at once. Then it’s time for the final touch: an Art Deco Car Diffuser, which looks more like jewelry than the usual fragrance plug-in. Pair it with your favorite Murchison-Hume fragrance on the go.
Lastly, give the inside of your windows a quick clean with our streak-free Glass Cleaner.
How to Clean Your Trunk
While most car-owners aren’t too concerned with how their trunk looks, it can quickly get out of hand—especially if you throw things in it often. Because the trunk of your car is often lined with the same material as your car’s carpets, you can also treat them with Garment Groom or laundry detergent depending on how much work they need.
Finish with a good few spritzes of Room & Linen Spray, and enjoy the refreshing scent of the all-natural car diffuser.
How To Clean The Outside Of Your Car
How to Clean Your Car's Body
First, park your car in a shady spot, as direct sunlight can sleep up drying too much, leaving your exterior with soap or water stops. Then get two buckets ready—one with soapy water, and the other with water alone, as well as a sponge, clean rag, or lambswool mitt. Once you remove any loose dirt and debris like twigs or leaves by hand, rinse your car with a hose and lather up your rag. Get to work washing any dirt off the exterior, alternating between soapy water and clean water. Use a soft-terry towel to dry your car by hand.
How to Clean Your Tires
Even if you’re not off-roading on the regular, there’s a good chance your tires could use a good wash, too. Still, there’s no need to do anything separately than you would with your exterior: a good sudsy scrub should do the trick!
How to Clean Your Headlights
If you notice the lights aren’t as bright at night or appear foggy in the daytime, it’s time to clean the surface of your headlights—not only can foggy, oxidized or otherwise obscured headlights be an eyesore, but they’re also a safety hazard at night or during heavy rain. The good news is that you don’t need to rush out to buy a headlight-specific cleaner—instead, try using toothpaste with an old toothbrush! The mild abrasive action will clear the cloudiness. Finish with Glass Cleaner for a perfect finish.
If this sounds time-consuming, it’s because it is: But setting aside a couple of hours a few times per year will go a long way in keeping your car in great shape. It’ll be especially worth it when it’s time to sell!