We’ve compiled a list of our top techniques to not only clean your car quick, but also achieve a “straight out of the dealership” clean! These tips are our favorite, since not only will you be saving money as compared to going to the auto detailer, but you can do this easily at home, with products that you already have on hand.
“UnCrumb” Your Car Using A Toothbrush
Crumbs have a very sneaky way of hiding in our car. They always fall into the crevices of your car, never to be seen again. But, cleaning them up seems like an impossible task! To remove these crumbs and make your life easier in the process, use a toothbrush to gather all crumbs up, then wipe away or use a vacuum for best results.
Clean Cloudy Headlights With Toothpaste
Toothpaste, especially whitening toothpaste, cleans your cloudy headlights to perfection. Apply toothpaste to the plastic lens cover with a cloth and thoroughly rub it in all over the lens. Use that elbow grease. Then rinse off with water, and dry. Voila! Your headlights will be sparkling like the day you rolled off the dealer’s lot.
Clean Your Floor Mats Like a Pro
Your car’s floor mats are a magnet for dirt, oil, and grime. Whether you have a job that requires you to get dirty, or simply have kids who play sports, we’ve got a tip that can help you get your mats in great shape again. Don’t pay retail price at the auto detailer when you can clean your floor mats just as well by yourself at home. For fabric mats, use a stain remover to help loosen up any difficult stains, then load them into your washing machine on “gentle” cycle along with some detergent. You only want to wash these in a front-loading washing machine, so as not to ruin your washer.
Screwdriver To Clean Nooks And Crannies
Every car has tiny nooks and crannies where dirt and grime love to live. If you wipe it away with a cloth and a cleaner, the dirt just doesn’t come off entirely. So, what to do? You take a screw driver, and old cloth, or T-shirt, drape it over the top of the screwdriver, and it becomes a soft-surfaced scraper. Work it into wherever you have pesky dirt in your car, and your friends will be asking you where you got your car detailed!
Peel Off All Those Ugly Bumper Stickers Easily With Some WD-40
Are you over those bumper stickers you thought were cool once? Well, now you can peel them off easier than it was to stick them on. All you need is some WD-40. Just spray some WD-40 directly on the sticker, allow some time for it to soak through, and then pull it right off. No more peeling at a ripping bumper sticker for hours.
Use Hair Conditioner For The Perfect Shine Finish On Your Car
You know what’s better than silky smooth and shiny hair? A Shiny Clean Car!
You can achieve that shine perfection for your car by using a hair conditioner. Just make sure it’s a conditioner that contains lanolin. That is the magic ingredient that gives your car that waxy finish. Just pour some onto a towel, and work in circular motion until you see that brand new car shine.
Make Your Windshield Crystal Clear With Cola
Sometimes the weather can really mess your windshield up. Rain mixes with dirt, or pollen mixes with rain and dust, and your windshield is streaked and blurry. This is a driving hazard, and one that can be easily fixed. When Windex just isn’t cutting it, go to your nearest fridge and grab a cola. That is your new glass cleaning tool. Simply pour the cola over the glass. Place a towel on the hood to protect the paint. The bubbles in the soda will fizz away the grime. Make sure to wash away the sticky soda off, or else the stickiness will attract dirt all over again.
Get A Perfect Wipe Down With A Coffee Filter
Want to get rid of every single speck of dust/dirt in your car? Then wipe it down with coffee maker filters. They are made of lint-free paper which is perfect for dusting. It grabs on to EVERYTHING. The best part about this is that dust won’t fly everywhere like when using a traditional feather duster. In a couple minutes, you could be done dusting your every surface in your car.
Get Rid Of Dead Bugs On The Front Of Your Car With Cooking Spray
Are you coming back from a road trip? Well, make sure to have your PAM handy. And this time, you’re going use it for a different kind of grill —your car grill that is. Apply cooking spray to your car grill or bumper, then wipe all the bugs off easily with a towel. The oil from the PAM will help remove crusted on bugs in a snap.
Clean Out Cup Holders Using An Old Sock, Travel Cup, And Windex
Finally, you’ll be able to clean out that coffee from 2015 you dropped in your car cup holder. The way is a little unconventional, but it works. Get a travel cup, place an old sock over the cup, and spray it with windex. Then place the cup inside the cup holder. Twist and turn it, and watch it lift dirt, food, coffee, everything, away!
Scent Car With Essential Oils On Wooden Clothes Pin
Car fresheners are usually overwhelming, chemical based, and can cause more harm than good. So, using essential oils, which are natural are a much better option when freshening a car. It’s also less expensive, because just a few drops go a long way. Take your favorite scent of essential oil and place a few drops on a wooden clothespin. Place the clothes pin on one of your air vents.
Rub a Clay Bar On Car To Get A Dealership Wax Finish
Rub a clay bar across the outside of your car when you’re done washing and drying it. The clay picks up any built-in gunk that may be stuck on your car’s exterior, and it also leaves a nice finish!
Wipe Wiper Blades with Alcohol to Avoid Streak Marks.
You know when you wipe your wiper blades “clean”, but then when you turn them on to wipe off a little rain, it’s streak city. Very annoying, right? Well, to prevent that from ever happening, you take some rubbing alcohol, put some on a cloth or towel, and wipe the blade clean. When you turn those babies back on, zero streaks!
DIY Cleaner That Will Remove Any Stain On Your Car Seats
Overtime, it’s inevitable to get stains on your car seats that are so ingrained, that no cleaner will get out. Until now. This DIY cleaner will do the trick: mix a cup of vinegar, a cup of club soda, half cup of dish soap into a spray bottle. Mix solution in a spray bottle, spray directly to seats, and work it in with a small towel or scrub brush. Let dry. All clean.
Olive Oil To Polish Leather
Instead of buying expensive cleaners to replenish your leather seats, use olive oil. It’s cheaper, natural, and it works. Apply a small amount of oil onto a clean cloth or small towel, rub it in circles on your seats. Be sure to apply sparingly, as a little goes a long way.
Rid your car of pet hair using a squeegee and spray bottle
Don’t waste your time vacuuming your pet hair in the car. It won’t pick it ALL up. So, what’s the point? To pick it ALL up, use a squeegee, and a little water in a spray bottle. Mist the spray bottle on the seats and use the squeegee to loosen the hair. It will gather every single pet hair on your seats, leaving them perfectly clean.
Keep Cupholders Clean Using Silicone Cupcake Liners
Your cupholders are probably the dirtiest part of your car. So many things constantly spilling and getting stuck inside. The simple solution to keeping them clean all the time, is lining them with silicone cupholders. They keep your cup holders from getting sticky. Just throw them in the dishwasher when it’s time to clean!
Reduce Odors in Your Car, Naturally
Is your car’s odor less than desirable? If so, you can clear out any residual smells from your car with a simple fix. Just take some baking powder and sprinkle on the seats and floor of your car. Let this sit for several hours, then vacuum it up. The baking soda will soak up the smells in your car, and your family will thank you!
Use Kitchen Powder Cleaners To Get High-End Detailing Look On Tires
Those powders that you use to clean and polish your pots and pans, are more useful than you think. They actually are amazing for detailing those rims and tires like a pro! Just take a cloth or towel, sprinkle some of the powder, and spray some Lysol onto powder. Then, just work into the rims and tires. Scrub until you see the transformation right before your eyes. You’ll think your car just rolled off the dealer’s lot!
Freshen Your Car With Scented Wax
Does the smell of normal car fresheners give you a headache? Try one of these DIY car fresheners. All you’ll need is a glass jar with holes drilled or poked into the lid. Then, you can fill with wax cubes or your favorite candle. The heat in the car will cause the max cubes to melt, making your car smell fresh and heavenly.
Keep Your Car Clean With a Trash Bin
Sometimes our cars become overridden with bits and pieces of trash. To keep it from collecting in an unsightly manner, try using one of these car-friendly trash cans. The size and shape are perfect for fitting in your car and leaving your passengers with enough leg room to still enjoy the ride.
“Erase” Stains and Buildup From Your Car’s Leather
If you’ve got leather or vinyl seats, boy do we have a solution for you! Often times, spills and sticky residue can make its way onto your car’s seats. To fix this, you can use a Magic Eraser to gently scrub out stains. You’ll need to get the Magic Eraser slightly wet in order for it to work properly. Before trying this out on the main visible portion of your seat, you’ll want to test this in a hidden spot to make sure it won’t harm the interior of your car.
Clean Air Vents Easily
Cleaning your air vents can be a tough task. The area is difficult to clean since there are so many nooks and crannies for dust and residue to build up in. One trick is to take a foam paint brush that you can easily purchase from any dollar or hardware store. Using this to clean your vents will make your life much easier.
Newspaper for Cleaning Windows
As long as you don’t have tinted windows, you can use this hack. Simply take your favorite glass cleaner and spray onto your car’s windows. Ball up a piece of newspaper and wipe clean. This is a superb method for getting your car’s windows sparkly clean.
Dryer Sheets to Remove Bugs
Squished bugs that have found their way onto your car are not only bad for your car’s paint, they are also unsightly. A way to remove dead bugs from your car is to spray your car with some water, and use a dryer sheet to gently rub on the surface of your car.
Remove Salt from Your Car
If left on your car for too long, salt can be damaging. It can cause rust and even ruin your paint. To remove, simply mix one part vinegar and one part water in a spray bottle and spray on the slat. Thanks to its neutralizing properties, the vinegar makes it easy for you to wipe the salt off with a cloth.
Detail Your Vinyl or Leather Surfaces
The armrest in your car is probably one of the grimiest, since it receives a lot of handling. It’s also a surprisingly difficult area to clean since just wiping it with a cloth won’t get into the crevices. A great way to give this a nice clean is to take a toothbrush and a mild dish soap and scrub the area. This will get rid of any buildup and oils left on these surfaces.
Use a Sheet to Protect Your Car From Messy Little Ones
If you have small children in the household, you probably have some trouble keeping your car’s seats free of crumbs, dirt, and sticky messes. One way to resolve this is to use a flat sheet to cover your seats. Every so often, you can change out the sheet, and it’s as simple as throwing it in the wash to get it clean again–easy peasy!
Dry Your Car Off Thoroughly After Washing
We all know the drill: your car has just been freshly washed and somehow the next day you’re seeing dried water spots all over the exterior. The best thing to do right after giving your car a wash is to dry it thoroughly. This will ensure that no dirt or bugs stick to the water drops, and will keep your car looking clean for as long as the weather will allow.
Use an Iron to Remove Spills
It happens to the best of us–you notice that there’s a sticky pill melted into the fabric of your car’s upholstery. Never fear, there’s an easy way to fix this. Not many people know that you can take an iron and a piece of thick paper to remedy this. Place the paper over the spill and iron on top. The sticky mess will lift from the upholstery and onto the paper.
Get Rid of Streaky Windshield Wipers
Not only are streaky windshield wipers unsightly, they can also be dangerous because your vision is impaired. Be sure you have clean windshield wipers with this tip from Popular Mechanics. Just take a clean rag and dab it with some rubbing alcohol then wipe the edge of the blade. Be sure that you do this only on rubber windshield wipers; if they’re made of another material, take caution.
Clean the Inside of Your Windshield With Only 2 Ingredients
Speaking of windshields, nothing is worse than when you’re driving during a rainstorm or snow storm with the inside of your windshield caked with film or dust. Even dusting your windshield regularly can’t remove the film that can develop, but luckily, you have the answer in your house. Mix one teaspoon of dishwashing soap in a bowl of warm water, then add a few drops of white vinegar to the mixture. Dip a microfiber cloth in the solution, and go over the inside of the windshield. To get into the corners, try using a ruler with the cloth draped over it. Dry with a clean microfiber cloth and you’re done! If you want a way to clean without chemicals, this is perfect.
Clean Vents With Silica Gel
Your car’s air vents work hard. They’re probably also covered in dust, grime, and all sorts of bacteria. You can use these silica gel gummy cleaners to remove grime, disinfect, and clean your vents and other crevices properly. These can be found at many online retailers for a couple bucks, and will save you tons of hassle.