How to Clean Your Car for Coronavirus

Men Washing His Car

Cleaning Your Car
Tips on How to Clean Your Car

At Hagerstown Honda, we fully understand the concerns our customers have about exposure to COVID-19, or coronavirus. When traveling outside for essentials, many people in Maryland are wearing masks, frequently using hand sanitizer and cleaning items they purchase when they get home. Don’t forget, though, that these items are also touching the interior surfaces in your vehicle. According to the , studies suggest that the coronavirus may live on surfaces for a few hours or up to several days. That means that you should be sanitizing the interior of your car to kill any germs it may have collected on your last visit to the grocery store or pharmacy. 

Car cleaner wiping car door with rag

How Long Does Coronavirus Survive on Surfaces?

From leather seats to plastic on the dash, your car may have a variety of different surfaces that require several products for a proper clean. According to the , the virus that causes COVID-19 is stable for up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to two to three days on plastic or stainless steel. suggests that similar viruses can live on “inanimate surfaces like metal, glass or plastic for up to nine days.”

Cleaning the interior of the car with a microfiber cloth

What’s the Best Way to Sanitize My Car’s Interior?

Wash your hands and put on disposable gloves if you have them before starting the cleaning process. Most will work well for sanitizing your vehicle. Just be sure to read the product’s label to make sure it’s safe for the surface you’re planning to use it on. It’s also good to keep disinfectant wipes and a small bottle of hand sanitizer in your car so that you can clean surfaces and your hands on the go.

Worker washing of interior leather seats

How to Clean Leather Seats in My Car

If you’re using a new leather cleaner, it’s smart to spot test it on a hidden area to ensure it will work well for your specific seats. Always use a microfiber cloth to avoid scratching the leather. Don’t have any leather cleaner? Mix two parts vinegar with one part water to make your own DIY leather cleaner. If you can, apply a leather conditioner after you’re done.

How to Disinfect Surfaces in My Car

The most important areas of your Honda to keep clean are the dashboard and the steering wheel. Bacteria tends to collect in these spots, as air is cycled throughout the vehicle. To clean your dash, simply use soap and water. Just dampen the surface and scrub for 20-30 seconds — dish soap works fine if that’s all you have. It’s important to also wipe your dash and steering wheel with a disinfecting product frequently. Other high-touch surfaces to focus on cleaning can include:

  • Door Handles
  • Door Buttons
  • Key Fob
  • Steering Wheel
  • Inside Door Buttons
  • Seat Belts
  • Gear Shifters
  • Touchscreens
  • Buttons on the Dash
  • Buttons for Lights
  • Buttons for Windshield Wipers
  • Glove Compartment

Do I Need to Disinfect My Car’s Exterior?

Even though germs and bacteria are less likely to survive on the outside of your car thanks to the sun and other weather, it’s still smart to disinfect areas you touch frequently. Some high-touch surfaces to clean can include the door handles, handle buttons and gas cap.

Are There Disinfectants I Should Avoid Using in My Car?

If you want to avoid damaging the interior of your Honda, don’t use bleach or hydrogen peroxide to disinfect. These can damage the vinyl and plastics in your cabin. You should also avoid any ammonia-based cleaning products used to clean glass, as they can break down the vinyl on the dashboard. Heat and light may then cause your dashboard to become sticky.

Here at Hagerstown Honda, we want to do our part to help educate our customers and keep them safe and healthy during this difficult time. If you have any questions about car care or need assistance, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our Honda dealership in Hagerstown, MD.