How to Get Stubborn Stains Out of Your Car

Is your car interior starting to look a little worse for wear? Many people don’t just use their car as a mode of transport from point A to point B, they also use it as a place to eat meals, get work done, take care of children, transport pets, apply makeup and even sometimes sleep. After a while, it is likely that stains and spills will build up on the upholstery and floor.

Of course, when it comes time to sell the vehicle these stains and odours will have a negative effect on the asking price. This is why it is so important to keep your vehicle as clean as possible. So what’s the best way to keep your vehicle stain free?

How to Clean Common Stains

If a stain occurs in your vehicle it is important to clean it up before it has a chance to settle into the fabric of the upholstery, otherwise it will stay there for a long time and be much harder to remove. Here are some of the most common substances that stain your vehicle, as well as some tips on how to clean them.

  • Ink – Test a hidden area of the upholstery for damage, then coat the ink stain with hair spray. Leave it for a few minutes so that it can absorb the ink, then wipe it away. Repeat the process if needed.
  • Blood – Use cold water and powdered laundry detergent to make a paste, then apply it to the stain until dry. After it has dried you can brush or vacuum the excess detergent away.
  • Coffee – The coffee spill should be diluted immediately with cool water, then blotted with clean rags or paper towels. If the stain still remains when the spot dries, spray it with glass cleaner.
  • Oily Stains – If you spill something oily or greasy, such as food grease or lipstick you can remove it with a watered down paint thinner formula and a cotton cloth. Place a little bit of paint thinner in a cup and add an equal amount of water, then dip a cotton cloth in the cup and rub it on the stain.
  • Vomit – If someone is carsick in your vehicle, you should clean it up as soon as possible so that it doesn’t set into the upholstery. Wipe it up and dilute the stain with cold water, then wash the area with warm water and mild soap. Try to neutralise the stain by pouring a small amount of club soda a cloth and then blotting it.

Keeping Your Car Clean

As well as cleaning up any stains as soon as they occur, you can also rent a steam cleaner occasionally so that you can deep clean the upholstery and carpet. A steam cleaner will usually cost around $35 to $40 for a 24 hour rental period and you can even use a few drops of lavender essential oil so that it gives the interior of your car a pleasant smell.

When it comes to cleaning the seams where the upholstery has been sewn together, you can use an old toothbrush to scrub out the dirt and debris. You can also remove the floor mats and clean them by using the same cleaner that you have used for the rest of the upholstery. Rinse them thoroughly and dry them with a microfiber cloth. Also, a lint roller can be a great way to pick up little pieces of fuzz, crumbs and hair as well as removing hard to reach debris.

Use a Car Boot Liner

One of the best strategies for avoiding stains in your car is to prevent them from ever occurring in the first place. If you often transport messy things in your boot like gardening supplies, food, muddy boots or wet dogs, consider using car boot protectors to keep your vehicle safe from any stains. There are boot liners that you can order which will be customised to your own make and model of car, such as Mercedes boot liners, Volvo boot liners and Land Rover boot liners. They will fit your boot exactly, so you don’t have to worry about stains damaging the interior of your car permanently.

Keep these tips in mind for keeping your car interior clean, so that your car will be a pleasant environment and persistent stains will not decrease the resale value.

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