Interior Cleaning and Conditioning How To's

Interior Cleaning and Conditioning How To's

Interior Cleaning and Conditioning How To's

Other people may admire the outside your vehicle, but you see the inside every time you drive. Depending on how you use your vehicle, the interior may need even more TLC than the paint! This guide will take you through the basics of interior care. After all, it's what's on the inside that counts!

The interior of your car is a relatively small space. Small messes have a huge impact! Keep your interior looking great with weekly quick-cleanings. A little time spent cleaning each weekend will keep your monthly super clean-up from taking up your whole Saturday!

Weekly Cleaning Regimen

Use a soft microfiber towel to wipe down all solid surfaces (the Supreme 530 Microfiber Towel is always a good choice!). This microfiber cloth will catch the accumulated dust and minor spills that have occurred since the last detailing. BLACKFIRE Interior Detailer can be used during this step to help the removal of dust, fingerprints, and oily smudges and to impart a "just detailed" look quickly!

Remove pet hair in seconds with a dedicated Pet Hair Removal Tool - SONAX Pet Hair Brush, Speedy Pet Hair Removal Stone, and the Lilly Brush Mini Pet Hair Detailer are perfect for this! It takes just a minute or two to brush pet hair off the seats.

Floor mats probably bear the brunt of abuse during the week. Shake them out if they're not too bad. If you have a Metro VAC N GO 500 High Performance Hand Vac at your disposal, go ahead a give them a quick vacuuming. This little machine isn't cumbersome to use and it has great suction for a hand vac. A quick cleaning with BLACKFIRE APC All-Purpose Cleaner or SONAX Multi-Purpose Interior Cleaner can be used to remove any sticky stains or spots.

Unless you made a big mess that week, this is all you need to do on a weekly basis.

Monthly Cleaning Regimen

Give your interior a thorough cleaning about once a month. If you get into a habit, no spot or stain will go unnoticed.

If you own the Metro Vac ‘N Blo you'll find the clean-up a breeze. The Vac N Blo's crevice attachments make it easy to get into all those tight spots where only dirt and pocket change go.

Break out your SONAX Upholstery And Alcantara Cleaner and make carpet and upholstery stains vanish. Use our recommended Natural Tampico Upholstery And Carpet Scrub Brush to work the cleaner into the spot and blot it away with a clean towel. Once the spot is dry, you can re-vacuum the treated area to fluff the carpet pile again.

Wipe down all vinyl, plastic and rubber surfaces with a damp Cobra Microfiber Detailing Cloth. You can use either plain water or a cleaner, like BLACKFIRE Interior Cleaner. BLACKFIRE Interior Cleaner is a versatile, water-based cleaner for all leather, vinyl, velour, carpet, headliner fabric, wood, plastic, and metal. If a more thorough cleaning is necessary, use the soft-bristled Natural Horse Hair Interior Upholstery Brush to gently scrub the surface.

After cleaning, you'll want to protect the surfaces with an interior protectant, like BLACKFIRE Interior Protectant or Wolfgang Vinyl & Rubber Protectant. This makes the surface easier to clean the next time around, as well as adding a nice satin finish.

Warning! Avoid silicone-based protectants. Silicone leaves an oily residue and it attracts dust. Over time, it can turn your dashboard yellow. Stick to water-based protectants and you'll never have to worry about a greasy, yellow interior.

Next clean the interior glass using a non-ammonia glass cleaner, Wolfgang Perfekt Vision Glass Cleaner, BLACKFIRE Glass Cleaner, or GYEON Q2M Glass Cleaner. All of these cleaners are safe on tinted windows. Use the Waffle Weave Microfiber Glass Towel to wipe the glass clean with no streaks or lint. To avoid overspray, mist the towel with the glass cleaner, rather than spraying it directly on the glass.

You will need a small brush, like the Large Multi-Purpose Brush or the Mini Two-Way Detailing Brush to get inside the vents and in the seams where otherwise only dust, lint and the stray coins will travel. These areas are often overlooked and difficult to clean, but it makes a big difference in the overall appearance of your vehicle's interior.

Vinyl seats will respond best to Pinnacle Leather and Vinyl Cleaner for spills and dust. It also works superbly on leather. UV exposure has disastrous effects on both leather and vinyl so we have found the best product on the market today in UV protection is “ozone safe" 303 Aerospace Protectant. Coat your vinyl seats with 303 for lasting protection. The finish is clean, clear, and non-greasy. Wolfgang Vinyl & Rubber Protectant will also restore and maintain the supple, smooth texture of the dash, door panels, and console.

That's the lowdown on interior care. If you need more information on the care and conditioning of leather seats, please visit our guide entitled, "Proper Leather Care".

Odor Elimination

You can't see them. You can't escape them. Interior car odors are everywhere! It can feel like you're trapped in a fish bowl of bad smells when you have an odor problem in your vehicle. Fortunately, there are some excellent products on the market to quickly and permanently eliminate odors. Dakota Odor Bombs work as foggers or as quick-burst air fresheners. They eradicate odors in the air, on fabric, and on carpet. They are available in several scents to suit your taste. Dakota Non-Smoke is an odor-eliminating spray that is particularly effective at removing the smell of cigarette smoke. Besides being highly effective in automobiles, Dakota products work well in the home, in RVs, and in hotel rooms. Another excellent option is the Clean Air Genie Fogger. This one-time-use deodorizer permeates fabrics, air vents, and the air to destroy odors. It produces a temporary clean scent that gradually fades, but the foul smell never returns.