How to Clean Car Upholstery: Best Way to Clean Car Upholstery
How to Clean Car Upholstery: Best Way to Clean Car Upholstery
Everybody wants to have a clean car. Nobody wants to drive around in a filthy vehicle. Unfortunately, life is filled with mishaps and accidents; so it seems inevitable that any car the average person is driving is going to get dirty in one way or another. It could come in the form of a coffee stain during the morning rush of the work commute. If you’re a driver who regularly has children in their vehicle, the chances of your car upholstery staying clean for long is laughable. Every parent is familiar with the discovery of fossilized french fries, melted chocolate sculptures, or dried up juice box ponds hidden behind the driver’s seat.
Before you take to having a one-sided boxing match with your dashboard, or unleashing an apocalyptic fury upon your little ones, know that these stains do not have to be a permanent source of aggravation. With a little know-how, some elbow grease, and time, the stains and grime in your car will be a distant memory. Use this guide to maintain cleanliness to your car seats, carpet, and even the ceiling, and repeat to yourself, “It’s gonna be okay.”.
How to Get Stains out of Car Seats
Since they’re unsightly and annoying, a lot of people want to know how to remove stains from car seats. No matter who’s fault it was, a stain can still be wiped out effectively with a car seat stain remover. You can whip one up with a couple of household ingredients, or go with a store bought car stain remover. In this article, we’re going to focus on some home remedies first, as some stains need to be dealt with immediately. For the best results, it’s best to identify what kind of stain you’re dealing with in order to create a cleaning solution that’s tailored to the substance.
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How to Remove Coffee Stains
If you or your loved one has spilled coffee in the car, it’s best to attack the stain with cold water (Not too much! Use a rag.) and blot it with a paper towel. Spray the stain with glass cleaner, leave it for a few minutes, and blot with another paper towel. This should pull the stain out best. If the stain isn’t completely gone, use water and a small amount of liquid detergent. Rinse the spot and dry it with a blow-dryer or fan.
How to Remove Ink Stains
An ink stain can be removed pretty easily with some hairspray and water. Spray the stain with the hairspray and blot it with a damp cloth. Do not rub the stain as this will usually spread the ink. If you don’t have hairspray you can also use rubbing alcohol.
How to Remove Lipstick Stains
White toothpaste and rubbing alcohol will rid your car of lipstick stains. Put some white toothpaste on the stain, wipe it with a damp cloth, and blot the area with rubbing alcohol on a rag.
How to Remove Chocolate Stains
Chocolate stains must be handled a bit differently. You’re going to want to rub the chocolate with a washcloth or wipe; do not attempt this. Wiping fresh chocolate is going to press it further into the upholstery. The best method is to use an ice cube and rub it on the chocolate until it hardens and then scrape it off. Any remaining chocolate can be removed with a wet cloth and a bit of dishwashing liquid.
How to Remove Greasy Stains
For a greasy cheeseburger or french fry stain, the best method for removal is to use a cup with equal parts paint thinner and water. Dunk a washcloth in the mixture and rub it into the stain. Shake some salt onto the stain, let it sit overnight, and vacuum the spot clean.
How to Remove Blood Stains
Never use hot water on a blood stain as it will set the stain and it may become permanent. Instead, use cold water with liquid soap on a damp cloth, or some hydrogen peroxide. Blot the stain with the cold damp cloth, rinse the cloth and repeat as necessary.
How to Remove Vomit Stains
You’re going to want to clean vomit out of your car as soon as possible (obviously). If the vomit is left to sit too long, it will settle into cloth or carpet and the odor and bacteria will set right in with it. First, you’ll need to remove the bulk of the vomit with paper towels and pour some cold water on the stain. You can then wash the stain with warm water and detergent. Finally, you should pour some baking soda onto the area to eliminate any odor.
Car Interior Stain Remover
If you encounter a stain that hasn’t been listed above, or you just don’t know what the stain really is, you’ll need a universal formula to clean car seat stains. One cup of warm water and ¼ cup of baking soda, mixed together, will create a great spot-cleaning solution. Apply the mix to any stains and let it absorb for about a half hour. With a dry towel, blot the stain spot; absorbing as much of the liquid as possible.
Next you’ll need the following ingredients:
- Warm Water
- Dish Detergent
- Distilled White Vinegar
In a spray bottle, mix ¼ cup of vinegar and a couple drops of detergent with warm water. Spray any and all stains in your vehicle. Let this mixture sit and do it’s work for about 15 minutes before soaking up all moisture with dry towels. This is how to clean car seat stains most efficiently and with the best results.
Carpet Stain Remover
Now that you’ve managed to get all the mysterious spots and stains out of the seats of the car, it’s time to turn your attention to the carpet. The carpet is a very vulnerable spot in your vehicle for food bombs and spills. Be it ketchup packets that were dropped and stepped on, or dirty work tools thrown haphazardly into the hatchback, you can lay these spots and blotches to waste with this formula for the best car carpet stain remover:
- 1 tablespoon of dish soap
- 1 cup distilled white vinegar
- 1 cup of club soda
Mix these ingredients to create a compound that will eradicate grease spots, oil stains, food marks, and milk or juice spills. Using a spray bottle, spray each stain abundantly with the solution and let it sit for about ten minutes. Equip a scrub brush and go over each stain with the brush in a circular pattern. This will eliminate most stains, but some darker stains may require another round of the procedure.
Once all stains are gone, you should go over the carpet with a wet/dry vacuum. Doing so will leave the carpet evenly cleaned and will get rid of any watermarks left from the solution. When the task is complete, you’ll want to leave your car doors open for a while to let the cleanser smell depart from the vehicle.
How to Clean a Car Headliner
When things get crazy in your car, the interior ceiling (or headliner) is in danger! Kids having a food fight in the back seat, or a night out with some rowdy friends in your car can result in food, smoke, or makeup stains on your car ceiling. Even if you have none of these perils in your life, over time, the roof of your car will become discolored and will need to be cleaned.
Before you begin, remember that the headliner fabric needs to be handled gently or you run the risk of tearing and sagging in the fabric. The safest methods will involve using a car upholstery cleaner and a microfiber towel. Spray a cleaning solution lightly on any stains and wipe it away gently with the microfiber towel. Once you’ve cleared all stains, go over the entire headliner area softly with the microfiber cloth.
If your headliner doesn’t have any major stains, you can simply use a vacuum cleaner with a handheld attachment. Go over your entire headliner with the vacuum to pull out any dirt or smoke residue.
Best Car Upholstery Cleaner
If you’re the type of person who just wants to purchase a cleaning product, rather than mixing a DIY car upholstery cleaner, you’ll want a car upholstery stain remover that’s going to work best. Interior car detailing is important to restoring your car, when choosing a brand be sure to consider their quality, to ensure that your car will be cleaned well. This is a list of the top-rated upholstery and fabric cleaners on the market:
- Car Guys Super Cleaner
- Meguilar’s G9719 Carpet & Upholstery Cleaner
- Chemical Guys upholstery Shampoo
- Blue Coral DC22 Upholstery Cleaner
- Armor All Oxi Magic Carpet & Upholstery Cleaner
Hopefully, after reading this article, you’ve unclenched your fists from your hair and are ready to liquidate the troublesome stains and blemishes from within your vehicle. So next time the coffee spills, the snacks drop, or the muck hits the ceiling, remind yourself that the problem is temporary. With the proper household items or a good store-bought cleaner, your car’s interior can be returned to its former glory.