12 Household Items that Can Be Used for Cleaning Your Car:
- Vinegar has lots of uses in the home and in the car. You can use it from everything from deodorizing to cleaning the windshield or upholstery. As a general rule, use 3 parts water to one part vinegar for your cleaning solution. You can also mix 3 parts vinegar to 1 part water in a spray bottle and spray your windshield to help keep it free of frost in the winter.
2. Dawn Dish Soap
- Dawn, when mixed with a bucket of water, becomes an inexpensive car soap. If you want to increase the impact, add vinegar for tough grime on your car and tough stains on your seats or floors. Do not use on leather seats. Leather needs moisture and this mixture may be too abrasive.
- If you have essential oils at home, you can create your favorite scent and make your own hanging car air freshener! This is a really fun idea to customize the scent of your car. Here is a simple tutorial of how to make your own: http://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/2012/08/make-your-own-car-air-freshener-in-minutes.html
4. Rubbing Alcohol
- Rubbing alcohol is great for removing stains. Dab the stain with alcohol and make sure to use a die-free cloth. Do not rub, just dab. (link to cleaning ink from seats) You can also use a solution of ¼ cup of rubbing alcohol to 1 liter of water to prevent frost from accumulating on your windshield in winter. If your windshield is already frosty, spray undiluted rubbing alcohol directly on the outside of windshield and watch the ice melt away!
- Woolite works as a leather cleaner! Use a mixture of 1 part Woolite to 10 parts water to clean and condition your leather seats. This post found on Pinterest has step-by-step instructions: http://isewdoyou.blogspot.com/2012/03/how-to-clean-car-leather.html
- Cornstarch is another household cleaning wonder that can be used when cleaning your car. To clean your car windows, use a solution of ½ cup cornstarch to 4 cups of water, spray on to your glass, wiped with a clean, die-free rag (such as a washcloth). Your windows will sparkle almost as brightly as your smile! You can also use cornstarch as a natural deodorizer on your upholstery, sprinkle on and let sit for 30 min before you vacuum. If you have a grease or oil spot on your upholstery, floorboards or mats cover it with cornstarch and let it set for 12 hours. Cornstarch will absorb the grease, then vacuum and clean.
- If your headlights are getting foggy, use toothpaste to brighten them up! Just apply toothpaste to the clear plastic casing, and scrub with a brush. Wipe the excess away.
8. Coconut Oil
- Not only is coconut oil great for cooking and softening your skin and hair, it is also an excellent conditioner for leather. First wipe your leather clean with a damp (not wet) clean die-free cloth, dry. Add small amounts of coconut oil and rub into the leather gently with a clean, dry cloth. Make sure to spot test first. We at pedalsandpumps.com tested this idea and it worked great!
9. Fabric Softener Dryer Sheets
- Some commercial products for cleaning your car can actually do more damage than good. Use a dryer sheet to wipe dust off of your cars dashboard instead. You can even tuck a sheet in the glove box or between the seats to help keep your car smelling as fresh as your laundry. Placing a dryer sheet in your air filter can also help keep rodents away!
- After you have dusted your dashboard, you can add shine with a little olive oil. First make sure to spot test in a hidden area before you treat the whole area. Once you are sure that no discoloration will occur, apply a small amount olive oil to the dash and rub with a clean cloth. It will look shiny and new!
11. Cooking Spray
- Cooking spray can be used to keep dirt and brake-dust off of your tires and wheels when cleaning your car. Just clean the area and spray on the cooking oil. This will make cleaning your tires easier in the future. You can also use it to remove bugs stuck to the front of your car, just spray and wipe.
12. Baking Soda
- What can’t baking soda do? It deodorizes, just sprinkle it on your floor mats and vacuum away for a refresher. It is also a less abrasive cleaner. Use a paste of baking soda and water to clean dirty seat belts. Apply the paste to the nylon, gently scrub, rinse, and air dry. It is important to use non-abrasive cleaners on seatbelt material so that you do not weaken the integrity of the fabric.