Clean spaces mean a clean mind, which is especially important when driving. If you have a family vehicle, the fall brings a lot more time in the car, running from school to extracurriculars, and it’s easier on everyone when the car is kept clean and organized.
In this blog, we’ve compiled some top tips for keeping your vehicle's interior neat and tidy. But first, let’s start at the beginning.
Start with a purge
Before you start to clean and organize, you will want to purge your car ruthlessly. Take out everything—all the garbage, sporting goods, colouring books, empty water bottles etc. Pull out car seats and remove any organizers on seat backs. Don’t forget about your centre and dashboard console!
Throw away all garbage, take any items not being used back into the house or donate so they don’t end up back in the same spot.
Deep clean your car
Once your car is empty, you will want to tackle the cleaning. Take out all the floor mats and shake them down. Vacuum all the carpet and upholstered seats, and hose down the rubber mats. Spot treat any upholstery spots or stains. Wipe down the leather interior with a special leather cleaning spray. Vacuum the dashboard and console of your car; don’t forget the cracks! Use a window cleaner to clean all glass services inside your vehicle and the outside mirrors! Wipe down all the buttons and handles with a spray or damp cloth.
Lastly, freshen your seats with a car spray or upholstery cleaner!
Determine your in-the-car needs
Now that everything is out and your vehicle is sparkly clean, it’s time to determine what items you really need in your car.
Toys, books and sporting goods can clutter your car and are often left behind. So take inventory of what’s genuinely being used and what’s just clogging up space.
Here are some things you might want to keep:
- Emergency Kit – you can assemble one or purchase a pre-made one online.
- Re-usable Grocery Bags – keep these in your car for grocery bags; it helps to store them in a tote, so they don’t end up rolling around everywhere.
- Seasonable Tote Bag – use these totes to store your seasonal needs, but switch them up every season. For instance, during winter, extra blankets, toques, boots and during summer, sunscreen, flip-flops, etc). But please note, only store items that you use and make sure to switch out!
- Paperwork in the glove compartment – all AAA information, insurance, and registration. You also might want to consider a phone charger cord, a small flashlight and a tire gauge for emergencies.
- Small items contained in a clear zippered pouch with smaller items such as tissue, bandages, pain relievers and band-aids. This could also be a good place for those no-melt snacks.
Consider a "no eating rule" in the car
It doesn’t sound like much fun, but wrappers and food crumbs can keep a car messy and hard to maintain cleanliness. If you must eat in the car, try sticking to non-sticky snacks.
Travelling with pets
If you travel with four-legged friends, keep them in a carrier for their safety and cut down on pet hair.
Nothing gets left behind
Every time you pull into the driveway, remind your kids and yourself to grab all your stuff. Whatever came in needs to come out. Creating this habit might be challenging, but it will make a HUGE difference in the long run.
Items that could help maintain your new clean and organized car:
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