Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, keeping our surroundings clean and sanitized has become more important than ever. As we continue to practice social distancing and wear masks, we must also ensure that the spaces we occupy – including our cars – are clean and free of germs. If you’re looking for tips on how to sanitize your car at home, you’ve come to the right place.

In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know to effectively clean and disinfect your car’s interior. From simple DIY methods to more advanced techniques, we’ve got you covered.

5 Easy Steps to Sanitize Your Car at Home

You don’t need a lot of fancy equipment or supplies to sanitize your car effectively. Here are the essential steps to follow:

Step 1: Gather the necessary materials

Before you start cleaning, make sure you have all the supplies you need. This includes:

  • A vacuum cleaner
  • Cleaning cloths or microfiber towels
  • All-purpose cleaner
  • Disinfectant spray or wipes
  • Brushes or q-tips for hard-to-reach areas

Step 2: Remove debris and trash

Start by removing any larger debris or trash from the car. This includes things like wrappers, food crumbs, and empty water bottles. Use a trash bag to collect everything and dispose of it properly.

Step 3: Vacuum and clean the interior

Next, use a vacuum cleaner to thoroughly clean the car’s interior. This includes the seats, floors, and dashboard. Be sure to get into all the nooks and crannies, such as the area under the seats and the air vents. Use a clean, dry cloth to wipe down any hard surfaces.

Step 4: Disinfect high-touch surfaces

Now it’s time to disinfect the areas of the car that are most commonly touched. This includes:

  • The steering wheel
  • The gear shift
  • The door handles
  • The seat belts
  • The radio and climate control buttons

Use a disinfectant spray or wipes to thoroughly clean these areas. For hard-to-reach spots, use a q-tip or small brush to apply the disinfectant.

Step 5: Let the car dry and air out

After you’ve finished cleaning and disinfecting, leave the car’s windows open for a few hours to allow fresh air to circulate. This will help dry out any moisture and reduce the risk of mildew or mold.

DIY Car-Cleaning Tutorial: How to Disinfect Your Vehicle

If you prefer to make your own cleaning solutions, here’s a simple recipe for a DIY disinfectant:

  • 1 cup of rubbing alcohol
  • 1 cup of water
  • 10 drops of essential oil (optional)

Mix the ingredients together in a spray bottle and shake well before using. This solution is effective in killing germs and viruses on hard surfaces.

When using the disinfectant, be sure to follow these tips:

  • Spray the solution onto a cloth or paper towel, rather than directly onto the surface, to avoid excess moisture
  • Don’t use alcohol-based disinfectants on leather or vinyl surfaces, as it can cause damage over time
  • Let the disinfectant sit for at least 30 seconds before wiping it off

Sanitizing Your Car: Tips and Tricks for At-Home Cleaning

In addition to the steps outlined above, there are other things you can do to keep your car clean and sanitary:

Clean the air vents and filters

The air vents and filters in your car can accumulate dust and dirt over time, which can circulate throughout the car’s interior. Use a brush or compressed air to remove any debris, and replace the air filter if necessary.

Wipe down the steering wheel and gear shift

These are some of the most frequently-touched areas in your car, so it’s important to keep them clean. Use a disinfectant wipe or spray to thoroughly clean these surfaces, and consider using a steering wheel cover to protect against future germs.

Removing stains from upholstery

If you have stains or spills on your car’s upholstery, try using a mixture of water and dish soap to clean it. Apply the solution with a cloth or sponge, then blot with a clean towel to dry.

Make the cleaning process more efficient and effective

To save time and effort, here are some tips:

  • Use a handheld vacuum to clean hard-to-reach areas
  • Invest in a steam cleaner to sanitize upholstery and carpets
  • Clean your car regularly to prevent dirt and grime buildup

Keeping it Clean: A Guide to Sanitizing Your Car on a Budget

You don’t have to spend a lot of money on fancy cleaning products to keep your car clean and sanitized. Here are some budget-friendly ideas:

Using household items as cleaning tools

You can use items you already have at home to clean your car, such as:

  • Baking soda and vinegar, which can be used to clean upholstery and carpets
  • Old t-shirts or towels, which can be cut up and used as cleaning cloths
  • Toothbrushes, which are small enough to clean hard-to-reach areas

Making your own cleaners and disinfectants

In addition to the DIY disinfectant recipe listed above, there are other cleaning solutions you can make at home using common household items:

  • Baking soda and water can be used to clean hard surfaces
  • Vinegar and water can be used to clean windows and mirrors
  • Lemon juice can be used to remove stains from upholstery

Finding low-cost cleaning products and equipment

Check your local dollar store or discount retailer for affordable cleaning products. You can also shop online for deals on cleaning supplies and equipment.

The Ultimate Car Sanitizing Checklist

Here’s a comprehensive checklist of everything you need to do to sanitize your car:

  • Remove debris and trash
  • Thoroughly vacuum the interior
  • Clean hard surfaces with an all-purpose cleaner
  • Disinfect high-touch surfaces with a disinfectant spray or wipes
  • Let the car dry and air out
  • Clean the air vents and filters
  • Wipe down the steering wheel, gear shift, and other frequently-touched areas
  • Remove stains from upholstery and carpets

For each item on the checklist, be sure to follow the tips and guidelines outlined in this article.

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Sanitize Your Car’s Interior Like a Pro

If you want to take your car-cleaning game to the next level, here’s a more advanced process for sanitizing your car:

Step 1: Pre-clean the car

Before you start disinfecting, thoroughly clean the car’s interior using a vacuum cleaner, all-purpose cleaner, and microfiber cloth.

Step 2: Steam clean the upholstery and carpets

Using a steam cleaner, tackle any stains or dirt on the car’s upholstery and carpets. This will not only make them look better, but it will also help sanitize the surfaces.

Step 3: Disinfect high-touch surfaces

Using a disinfectant spray or wipes, thoroughly clean the areas of the car that are most commonly touched. Be sure to get into all the crevices and hard-to-reach areas.

Step 4: Clean air vents and filters

Using a brush or compressed air, clean out the air vents and replace the air filters if necessary.

Step 5: Deodorize the car

Use an odor eliminator or air freshener to give the car a fresh scent. Look for products that are free of harsh chemicals and are safe to use around pets and people.

Step 6: Consider professional-grade equipment and products

If you want to achieve a truly deep clean, consider investing in professional-grade equipment and products. For example, you could use a detailing machine to steam-clean the upholstery and carpets, or use an industrial-strength disinfectant.


By taking the time to sanitize your car’s interior, you can help protect yourself and your passengers from germs and viruses. Whether you’re using simple DIY methods or more advanced techniques, the key is to be thorough and consistent in your cleaning efforts.

Remember to clean your car regularly, and don’t forget to pay attention to high-touch areas like the steering wheel and gear shift. With the tips and tricks in this guide, you’ll be well on your way to a clean and sanitized car.

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By Happy Sharer

Hi, I'm Happy Sharer and I love sharing interesting and useful knowledge with others. I have a passion for learning and enjoy explaining complex concepts in a simple way.

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