Whether you treat your car like your second home or simply a trusty steed to get you from A to B, we all appreciate a clean and tidy interior.
But life gets busy, and sometimes those pesky crumbs and clutter just sneak up on you.
No worries! Dive into these easy-peasy tips to ensure your car remains a spotless sanctuary amidst the hustle and bustle.
1. Clean-up Friday
Stepping into a cluttered car can be a mood-downer. Make it a routine to clear out unnecessary items. Stash a small trash bag for those random receipts, wrappers, and stray bits of trash. A little tidying goes a long way!
Now, some people can do this daily – especially those who daily drive that car to work. Great!
I don’t drive to work, but I drive daily, randomly, for various tasks and stuff.
So I have a “clean up Friday”. Every Friday evening, I take a trash bag and throw away everything I don’t need. Everything I need, I take it out and put it in its place.
It never takes me more than 15 minutes, and believe it or not, usually I never notice the build-up of stuff like wrappers and things untill thursday.
2. The mats!
Keeping the floor mats clean usually helps a lot!
Every few days just give them a shake or a quick vacuum. Or even a wash once in a while. I usually wash my rubber mats once a month and shake them 2-3 times per week depending on dirt build-up.
Now, some people use textile mats. Make sure you have your rubber ones or a spare set handy in case you wash them if the textile ones don’t dry fast enough and you need to go somewhere.
3. The cleaning
Okay, every 4-5 months I might just be nice and clean the whole dashboard nicely with dedicated chemicals like Meguiar’s and stuff. But I don’t always have the time. Especially for the daily driver. The most important rules for the daily driver are: it should be clean, not perfect and it shouldn’t make us ashamed (I’m not talking about price, I’m talking about a huge freaking stain of dirt on the door or something like that – not cool).
But usually, once every 2-6 weeks, as time allows, I do this:
- Cleaning. I wipe every plastic and buttons and stuff (dashboard, steering wheel doors etc) with non-alcohool disinfectant wipes. Fast. We are not detailing, we are moving fast. I usually really focus only on the front doors, steering wheel and gear knob – the most used parts.
- Making it shine and stuff. I wipe them again with a dedicated car wipe (tried a lot of brands, most of them are good enough but I like Meguiar’s G4000 Supreme Shine Protectant Wipes when I can get them). Again. This is not focusing on details. I try to get all the surfaces but I am not focusing too much on any area unless it actually has a spill or something.
- Vacuum if there are a lot of crumbs. I usually don’t do this because… there are no crumbs!
And everything takes like 30-40 minutes tops. I especially urge you to to step 1, and clean before applying chemicals like dashboard shine wipes and stuff. Things should be clean! Then we make them shiny! You wouldn’t apply wax to a dirty exterior would you? No!
And my interior usually looks amazing! Granted, spills and crumbs are rare.
Yes it would be a difference if it was detailed by a pro – or even by myself if I sank some hours into it. But it’s clean, it looks good enough and you won’t be ashamed of it if you need to give that odd friend a ride to work. And you didn’t wase time.
4. Freshen up!
Here’s a tip: those tree air fresheners usually suck and can be too much or too powerful. For a couple of days. Then their odor just goes away.
Instead, try a gentle car diffuser or a discreet sachet tucked under a seat. Fresh, subtle, and just the way a car should smell.
There you go!
If you adopt my routine or a similar one, take a deep breath and enjoy that clean, organized space. A tidy car is not just about looks – it’s about feeling great every time you hit the road and knowing it really is clean.
Keep it spotless and keep cruising!