Genius Car Cleaning Tricks You'll Wish You Knew Sooner - The Habitat
The Habitat
Home
Share to PinterestGenius Car Cleaning Tricks You'll Wish You Knew Sooner
Share to PinterestGenius Car Cleaning Tricks You'll Wish You Knew Sooner
Advertisement

Most car owners prefer to drive around in a gleaming like-new automobile, but that’s not always possible. Muddy streets to dusty parkades don't seem to care that you just had your sedan detailed. How much you drive, the climate where you live, and the place where you park all contribute to grimy buildup; it takes time and effort to keep a vehicle clean. https://files.heftycdn.com/ wp-content/uploads/2018/10/7029cbbddbb9d76af3e1ca7b37cc6085-800x450.jpg Make it easier to maintain a clean vehicle by adding some genius, simple cleaning tricks to your car-care arsenal.

01

Make car odors vanish with baking soda

Whether that lingering odor in your car comes from a ride-along with your favorite fur buddy or a bit of food that fell under the seat a few months back, getting rid of the smell can be tough. Sprinkle baking soda in the smellier areas of your car, on fabric-covered floors and seats. Rub it in gently, then let it sit for a few hours. Vacuum thoroughly and the foul smells will be sucked up with the powder!

Advertisement
02

Remove dust from vents

Share to Pinterestclose up of cleaning car vent with brush

To keep your air vents free of dust, pick up a bag of inexpensive foam paint brushes at a local hardware or craft store. These multipurpose brushes easily slide between the vent’s blades and remove any dust residue. Keep a few in your glove compartment, and use them whenever the vents need some freshening up.

Advertisement
03

Freshen up your AC intake vent

Share to Pinterestwoman holding her nose by car vent

Your car’s air conditioner puts in double time to keep you cool and comfy in hot weather. But sometimes, when you switch it on, you get a whiff of a less-than-fresh odor wafting through your vehicle’s interior. An easy remedy is to run your AC at full power, then spray a disinfectant like Lysol into the outside AC intake vent, located at the bottom of your windshield.

Advertisement
04

Clean those hubcaps with dish soap and baking soda

Share to Pinterest

Grime-free, shiny hubcaps add a new level of visual appeal to your vehicle, but it’s hard to get them clean due to road-grime buildup. To bring back the shine, combine one tablespoon of dish soap, a half-cup of baking soda, and two cups of warm water. Using a sponge or rag, scrub the dirt away, rinse, and enjoy the shine.

Advertisement
05

Fog-proof your interior windshield

Share to Pinterest

Few things are as irritating as dealing with fog buildup on your interior windshield. It hinders your view, which becomes a safety issue. To fog-proof your windshield, spray a healthy dollop of shaving cream on a clean, dry, microfiber towel. Cover the entirety of your interior windshield, then wipe it clean with a fresh microfiber towel and you’re done. No more foggy windshield.

Advertisement
06

Detail nooks and crannies with a toothbrush

Share to Pinterest

Sure, you can order a professional auto detailing kit with special brushes to get in all the tiny crevices and other places dirt and grime like to hide. Or, you can use a soft-bristled toothbrush and spend a lot less.

A toothbrush gets in all the tough places a cloth can’t, easily removing debris and grime buildup from the dashboard, console, steering wheel, and door surfaces without scratching or damaging them.

Advertisement
07

Shine your car exterior with hair conditioner

Share to Pinterest

Substitute personal care products, like hair conditioner, for expensive car soaps. Fill a bucket with two cups of water and ½ cup of conditioner, then cover the entire exterior of your car with the solution using a microfiber cloth to prevent scratching the paint. Hose it down, stand back, and admire the shine.

This trick also leaves behind a protective finish, repelling water and dirt and keeping your car cleaner for longer.

Advertisement
08

Keep cup holders cleaner with muffin cups

If you enjoy sipping on a morning brew on your daily commute, this hack is for you. Keep your cup holders nice and tidy by popping in silicone muffin cups. They fit perfectly and catch any drips or spills from beverages.

Silicone muffin cups are inexpensive, available in an array of colors, and you can pop them out to clean them in the dishwasher or by hand using soap and water.

Advertisement
09

Clean headlights with household solutions

Over time, headlights start to fog over or yellow, and it becomes necessary to replace them or clean them up. Save yourself some time and money by using household staples to clear up the problem.

Yellowed headlights benefit from a paste made from baking soda and warm water. Cover the headlight generously, then polish with a clean cloth. Toothpaste is also a great solution for bringing back a healthy headlight glow. Squeeze it directly onto the headlight, then using a cloth, wipe it away from the center, outwards.

Advertisement
10

Get rid of dead bugs with dryer sheets

Share to Pinterest

Sometimes, you can wash your car and still find dead bugs covering your bumpers. To remove them, fill a spray bottle with water, then add a balled-up dryer sheet. Spray the bumper thoroughly. Then, take a second dryer sheet and rub gently over the bumper. This trick may also work for tar or sap.

Dryer sheets contain a chemical that can dissolve the paint finish, though, so it’s best to use them only on the bumpers.

Advertisement
11

Slime your console to remove dust

Little did you know that the slime you made in science class would one day help you remove dirt and dust from your car’s interior. You can find tons of slime recipes online in case you’ve forgotten how to make it. Use the slime like a cloth to clean your car’s surfaces.

Advertisement
12

Eliminate windshield streaks with alcohol

Share to Pinterest

If you’re having issues with streaks every time you use your windshield wipers, try this trick before replacing them. Wash them with windshield wiper fluid first, then wipe them down using a bit of rubbing alcohol on a cleaning rag. Not only will it remove any soap residue on the blade, but it will also do away with the streaks you get when you turn on your wipers.

Advertisement
13

Remove burn stains with a raw onion

Share to Pinterest

A burn on your car’s seats diminishes its appearance. To reduce the visibility of the stain, cut an onion in half, then hold it on the spot for a few minutes. You should notice the juice of the onion absorbing into the fabric. Remove the onion. Blot the area thoroughly with warm water to finish.

Advertisement
14

Coffee filter dust cloths

Share to Pinterestdusting the dashboard of a car

Home hack experts long ago figured out that coffee filters can also clean off dust from knickknacks and home accessories. You can also use them to remove dust and lint from the dash and console of your car.

Some people add a few drops of vegetable oil to the filter for some extra oomph.

Advertisement
15

Vinegar removes lingering odors

Share to Pinterest

If you have an unidentified odor that just won’t go away, try leaving a cup of vinegar in your car overnight. It not only gets rid of musty odors and lingering cigarette smoke, but it’s also eco-friendly, cheap, and safe to use.

You can also use a 50/50 solution of vinegar and water in a spray bottle to lightly mist the carpet from time to time to keep your car interior smelling fresh.

Advertisement
16

Remove stickers with a blow dryer

Share to Pinterestlots of bumper stickers on a car

Get rid of your outdated bumper stickers safely and easily with a blast of air from a blow dryer. Hold the dryer at least six inches from the surface, turn it to a low setting, and target the bumper sticker for at least 60 seconds. The hot air melts the adhesive, making it easy to peel off your once-awesome now-dated declaration.

Advertisement
17

Clean windows with newspapers

Share to Pinterest

Instead of using loads of paper towels to clean your car’s windows, try newspaper pages. The paper used by printers to create newspapers is made from multiple dense fibers packed tightly together, so it doesn’t fall apart easily when wet, doesn’t leave streaks, and doesn’t scratch the glass.

It’s important to only use newspapers that are printed in soy ink rather than petroleum ink. Test it on a small area. If the newspaper creates smears or stains when wet, it’s petroleum ink.

Advertisement
18

Cotton swabs as a detail tool

Share to Pinterest

Have trouble getting to those tiny little corners, edges, and hidden crevices in your car? Try using a handy cotton swab. They’re small enough for hard-to-reach places and strong enough to get the dirt off.

Carry extras in your glove compartment or console so that you can make good use of your time when stuck in traffic or waiting for your kids to get out of karate class.

Advertisement
19

Petroleum jelly brings luster to your dash

Share to Pinterest

Detailers warn that repeated use of solvent-based dash cleaners can cause them to become discolored, brittle, and eventually crack. There are water-based options, but they tend to be expensive. Many car enthusiasts swear by the benefits of giving the dash a good cleaning with warm water and a cloth, then wiping it down with petroleum jelly to make it shine like new.

Advertisement
20

Remove rust with soda pop

Share to Pinterest

Rust on a car is not good news, but you can remove it by pouring a carbonated cola drink over it. The carbonation breaks up the rust as the phosphoric acid eats it up. Once you’ve poured the soda over the rusted spot, rub it down with a piece of aluminum foil. Rinse with soapy water. The rust disappears!

Advertisement
21

Clear debris off of your car with a leaf blower

It seems obvious, yet many car owners have never thought of it before. A leaf blower can also become a multi-functional car maintenance tool. Use it as a dryer after washing your car. Clear off leaves and other debris that are covering the AC intake vent. Lift the hood, and get rid of dirt, dust, or leaf piles that have accumulated.

Canned air like you use to clean your keyboard can also come in handy for smaller spaces.

Advertisement
22

Use a sock for cleaning your cup holders

Share to Pinterestdirty cupholders in car

Cup holders are one of the most likely spots in your car to collect sticky, grimy dirt. To clean them up, find a jar that fits in the cupholder. Place a clean sock over the bottom of the jar, soak it with spray cleaner, then press the jar into the cup holder and twist. As the cleaner breaks up the dirt, the sock wipes it away.

Advertisement
Advertisement

Share

Ad
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement