Car Cleaning Tips to Stay Safe During COVID-19

car cleaning tips for COVID-19

We want you to be safe during this COVIDC-19 pandemic and keeping your car clean is part of the battle. Your car is what you may use to go shopping which could be considered a high risk activity. We follow the science of The World Health Organization which states that the The COVID-19 virus has been proven to live on solid surfaces up to “many days”.

It would be advisable to try and limit your car use to periods where at least 36 hours have passed in between trips.

One of the ways the virus can infect an individual is through the transmission of droplets from an infected person – they cough onto a surface and you touch it or you unknowingly bring it into your vehicle on shoes, hands, clothes, shopping bags…

Clean the surfaces in your car

You want to start by disinfecting all the high-touch surfaces in the vehicle:

  • steering wheel
  • centre touchscreen
  • door handles (inside and outside)
  • shifter
  • key fob
  • turn signal stalks
  • wiper controls
  • locks
  • seat adjusters

The best car cleaning products to use

best car surface cleaning products
We recommend the use of isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol for cleaning the surfaces of a vehicle. It is available at drug and hardware stores. Start by spraying the rubbing alcohol onto a microfibre towel and then wipe everything down. It’s that easy.

One of the most convenient methods to clean car surfaces is with the use of disinfectant wipes. But they are not all created equal. Always test cleaning products and solutions on a small, inconspicuous spot first. Our favourite disinfecting wipes are Lysol wipes as they seem to leave less residue.

A strong soap and water mix is also a great cleaning product and may be easier on car surfaces like leather. The COVID-19 virus is destroyed when its outer membrane of fats and proteins is destroyed, which soap and water does very nicely.

Car cleaning chemicals to avoid

We advise you to avoid the use of really harsh chemicals to clean your vehicle’s surface because they can damage them. Laundry bleach does an excellent job of killing viruses but can ruin a vehicle’s surfaces. There is no recommended ratio for diluting bleach with water.

More chemicals on the “don’t use” list are:

  • hydrogen peroxide
  • ammonia
  • strong cleaners meant for exterior surfaces

Fabric seat cleaning

Cleaning your fabric seats is a more time consuming and difficult task. We recommend the use of a soap and water mix while lightly scrubbing it in with a soft brush and drying with a towel.

There are also many disinfecting upholstery cleaning solutions available at hardware stores. These are also good for cleaning fabric seats to remove COVID-19 virus contamination.

It is advisable to take the clothes you wore in the car off and wash them. Always wash your hands thoroughly after returning into the house and after handling any material that could have come in contact with the virus.

Cleaning tips at the gas pump

Take the same precautions as with any other outside surface. If you can’t wash your hands after using the pump, use a disinfecting wipe or hand sanitizer. You could also carry disposable latex or plastic gloves for filling up.

Keep your hands clean

Once you finish cleaning vehicle surfaces don’t forget to wash your hands. You also want to wash your hands before and after driving. Always remember that hand washing is at the top of the WHO’s guidelines to protecting yourself against coronavirus. Frequent hand washing is a good habit to get into and those clean hands will keep your steering wheel and other frequently touched surfaces in your car from looking dingy.

More Vehicle Washing Tips

For more car cleaning tips you can visit our article on tips on preparing your car for re-sale.