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Is your car interior breeding germs?

Most of us keep our cars clean on the outside, but do you know what could be lurking on the interior?

From the door handles, steering wheel, dashboard to the upholstery, dirt and bacteria gathers all over the inside of the car. You clean your home regularly to make sure your space is healthy and comfortable for yourself and your family, but it’s just as important to the interior of your car. Especially if you eat and drink in there.

What is lurking in the interior of your car?

swabs being taken from a car interior

In 2015 Nottingham University carried out an investigation into the cleanliness of car interiors, their findings were quite alarming.  Swabs were taken from car seats, steering wheels and footwells to find out exactly what was lurking there.  The results were bacteria and viruses, including bugs that could lead to E.coli and staphylococcus.

Busy lives, eating and drinking on the go

In a survey of drivers 8% admitted to having a dirty car whilst more than half said they dropped food whilst they were in the car, a further 35% admitted to spilling drinks.

Many drivers and passengers discard rubbish in the foot wells and under seats, with the intention of clearing out once they reach their destination, but of course with our

busy lives the rubbish, and left over food tends to just build up.

Then we have pets in our cars, with dirty paws and the odd toilet accident, along with children being sick, all seeping in nicely to the upholstery of your car.

Dirty cars are harder to sell

The effects of leaving your car interior dirty can not only have health implications, it can also cause you problems when it comes to selling your vehicle.  The ideal would be to lease then you do not have this worry, however it is worth knowing that one in five drivers would expect to pay less if a car was dirty, with 8% being put off buying all together.  Remember its not just the look of dirt, but if your car is not cleaned regularly it can become very smelly!

Car interior being cleaned

With this in mind, it is important to know exactly how you can clean the inside of your car to have the best possible effect.

How to clean the interior of your car

Take out your floor mats

It’s amazing just how much dirt can gather under your mats, so if you want to do a proper job, these need to be removed. Give them a shake and then vacuum them, so that they’re nice and clean when you put them back in. Use a small vacuum attachment to clean as much as you can inside your car. There will always be small crevices that you can’t reach.

Use glass cleaner to clean your cup holders

Spray glass cleaner into your cup holders, leave it for a few minutes, and then wipe it clean using a paper towel. You should find that this is an effective way to remove the dirt that gathers here.

Use carpet cleaner to get rid of stains

spraying cleaning fluid to clean the interior of a car

Stains are almost inevitable in any vehicle, and carpet cleaner is a great thing to use here if you have fabric seats. Follow the instructions, and it should leave your seats as good as new. Don’t use too much, as it is important that it is able to dry completely, or there is a risk of mould forming.

Wipe your dashboard

To clean your dashboard, use car wipes. Start at one side, and work your way to the other, making sure that you clean around anything that might on your dash, such as controls. If you don’t have these wipes, you should be able to buy them at your local car store, or even the supermarket. If you can’t get your hands on any, then using a paper towel with multi-purpose household cleaner is the next best thing.

Vacuum again

At the end of the cleaning process, you should vacuum your car again. This is because you will have knocked dirt on the floor and onto seats while you did the rest of the cleaning, so picking this up is the last part of doing a great job. Once the interior of your car is clean, you are certain to be able to tell the difference, and this will allow you to enjoy the experience of driving your vehicle even more.