When it comes to ensuring that your car remains in pristine condition, it's not just the outside of your car that you should look after. The inside matters too and is just as important as the exterior.
After all, it's incredibly easy for our vehicles to succumb to everyday wear and tear, especially if they are used on a daily basis with muddy shoes, kid's sticky fingers, motorway lunch pit stops, and long family journeys put into the mix.
Here, we explore why your car's interior is just as important as the exterior and offer some advice on cleaning the inside of your car.
Why is cleaning the interior of your car important?
It's extremely important that you maintain and care for the interior of your car; if left unmanaged, it can cause your car to decrease in value and can have a significant impact on the overall condition of your vehicle.
One of the main problems caused by not giving the interior of your car the TLC it deserves is that a build-up of dust particles containing grit and chemicals can eat away at the surfaces, causing long-term damage that cannot be rectified easily or, sometimes, at all.
How can you look after your car interior?
When it comes to cleaning the inside of your car, there are a number of easy things you can do that will make a big impact.
Clear out the rubbish
The first thing you'll need to do is clear out any rubbish that's accumulated - there's no point cleaning around empty crisp packets and takeaway coffee cups. As well as the seats and floor, check in your door cubbies, glove box, boot and other storage areas for anything that shouldn't be there.
No one particularly enjoys vacuuming but it's essential if you stand any chance of staying on top of those pesky dust particles; it can also be very satisfying as vacuuming really does make a big difference. You should get into the habit of vacuuming your vehicle frequently, taking care to vacuum the seats, floor, rear space and the car boot. If your vacuum has car detailing attachments, you can use these to get in the nooks and crannies like the vents, around the base of the gear stick and around any dashboard controls.
Mats and carpets
The mats and carpets need particular attention as anything brought into the car on people's shoes will end up on the mats or carpets. The first step is to remove the mats from the car and give them a good shake to start with, then vacuum them to get the worst of the debris off.
You may also need to scrub or even steam them to get out any stains, grime or stubborn dirt. Steam cleaning is also a great way to tackle stains and blemishes that will not lift easily. Let the mats dry fully before returning them to the car. While the mats are drying, vacuum, scrub and steam your carpets too, letting them dry out too.
Remove pet hair
If you have a furry friend who leaves hairs over your car, you may find vacuuming alone doesn't quite cut it. You can add a little fabric softener to water and spray the solution onto the upholstery, breaking the static bond between hair and fabric for easy vacuuming or, using a rubber glove, run your hand across the fabric in a single direction, causing static energy to lift the hair. You can also use a lint roller or sticky tape to get stubborn hairs.
Remove seat stains
Similarly to the floor, your seats can become the unwitting victim of dropped or spilt food or drink, especially if you have children. There are many car upholstery cleaning products available to use, or you can make your own (combine two parts water with one part vinegar and a drop of washing-up liquid). Spray the stains with the solution and leave to soak for about 15 minutes, then wipe away with a damp cloth.
Wipe down surfaces
You should also make sure that you give your dashboard a good wipe down too, as they're prone to accumulating lots of dust particles quickly. Use a microfibre cloth and dashboard cleaning solution to help with this, and don't forget your steering wheel, displays, hand brake, door handles and any other surfaces. If you stay on top of this cleaning task, it's usually light work.
Clean your cup holders
Condensation and spillages can make the bottom of cup holders moist and sticky and, when combined with dust and hairs, they become rather gross. If you can remove your cup holders, take them out and give them a good scrub; if not, use some cotton buds dipped in a cleaning solution.
Clean your windows
When driving any distance, your visibility should always be a top priority, so it's very important the inside and outside of your windows are clear. Use one of the many car glass cleaners and a microfibre cloth to leave your car's glass windows and windscreen gleaming.
Invest in fabric protection
Perfect for hard-wearing fabrics, leathers and plastics, fabric protectors are compounds that have been developed to coat the fibres of the upholstery with an invisible resin-based material. This protects it from everyday wear and tear, food, drinks, pets, and kids' sticky fingers.
Carbase's Safeguard Paint Protection also includes the application of upholstery protection.
Oh, don't forget to give your car a spritz of air freshener when you are finished to ensure that it smells showroom fresh!
Get in touch today
At Carbase, each of our high-quality used cars boasts a level of exterior and interior cleaning that is second to none. Our impressive fleet of used cars is ready and waiting on our forecourt to be test driven.
Get in touch today to find out more. Our friendly and approachable team of experts are on hand and more than happy to help.
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