Spring has nearly sprung for those of us on the West Coast, and it’s time to think about spring cleaning. Before you go diving into that hall closet, have you thought about spring cleaning your car? Throughout the year, all kinds of gunk gets into the nooks and crannies of your car. Here are a few tips and tricks for spring cleaning your ride!
Cup Holders: These always seem to be a magnet for grime and dirty pennies. The condensation from your drinks merges with the general fuzz and dirt that accumulates in a car and together they form some kind of unholy paste that seems impossible to remove. We always start with a good vacuum of the cup holders, just to get anything loose out of there. Then we use a cleaning solution (a simple all-purpose cleaner is fine) and a paper towel or sponge and really get in there to clean out the gunk. The same basic technique can be applied to clean out any of the storage cubbies in your car in need of a good cleaning.
Floor Mats: Think about the purpose of a floor mat - to catch all of the dirt from your shoes. Well, that dirt doesn't clean itself! Floor mats are one of those things that somehow make a car feel dirty or clean on their own. Take them out of the car and give them a good vacuum and shampoo and you’ll be surprised how much cleaner your car feels when you put them back! All-weather floor mats might also be a smart investment, since a quick shake can get rid of most of the dried dirt or debris your shoes track in.
Windows and Mirrors: When you go to the car wash, they usually wipe down the interior windows quickly with a rag. Most of the time that’s fine, but periodically it can leave a film on your interior windows. This is most obvious on the windshield where that film attracts excess moisture in the car and you find yourself using the defroster more than normal. Use a high-quality glass cleaner and a clean microfiber cloth to really give those interior windows a good scrub and remove the film of car washes past from the inside of your car. Your side view mirrors sometimes suffer the same fate, so be sure to get those too!
General Straightening: You spend hours per week in your car and somehow items from your house find their way into the trunk, never to be seen again. Spend some time going through the contents of your car (including the trunk and glove box) and removing the things that you forgot were even in there. Getting the extra heavy junk out of your trunk can also improve your gas mileage! While you’re at it, be sure to check the tire pressure on your spare. You never know when you might need it, but you do know it shouldn’t be flat.
In addition to cleaning out your car, spring can be a great time to have your car inspected or have any outstanding basic maintenance done before any summer trips. Winter can be a rough season for cars, and the mildness of the San Diego spring is the perfect time show your car a little bit of annual love!