Owning a car takes a lot of care and maintenance. One of the most used and abused area of your car is often overlooked. General maintenance and cleaning the car floor carpets or mats. Regardless of the material, be it cloth or rubber, these mats gather a significant amount of dirt, food, and liquid spills that require timely and efficient cleaning. This comprehensive guide outlines step-by-step processes on how to clean car carpets, ensuring squeeky clean and nice smelling car carpets.
Why Should I Clean Car Carpets?
A clean car interior contributes substantially to your overall driving experience. Properly cleaned floor carpets or mats not only ensure a pleasant car environment but also prevent the accumulation of dirt, debris, and allergens that could be harmful to your health. Moreover, timely cleaning helps in maintaining the quality and longevity of your car floor carpets, saving you money in the long run.
Cleaning Rubber Car Floor Carpets
If you have rubber mats like WeatherTech or other similiar brands, you’re in luck. Rubber car floor carpets are commonly used in regions with colder climates and frequent rain and snow. Their ability to dry quickly and prevent moisture from damaging your car’s interior makes them a preferred choice. Despite this, rubber carpets still accumulate dirt and require regular cleaning. Follow the steps below to clean rubber car floor mats:
- Remove the Mats from the Car: Start by removing the mats to avoid water and detergent getting inside your car.
- Remove Debris: Hit the mat against a hard surface to dislodge loosely attached dirt. For stubborn dirt, use a brush.
- High-Pressure Wash: Use a high-pressure water to effectively remove stubborn crumbs or dirt. Ensure to clean both sides.
- Apply Soap or Detergent: Use soap or detergent to eliminate all remaining dirt or stains. For odors, a mixture of baking soda and soap works wonders.
- Rinse Thoroughly: Use a hose or water pitcher to wash off the soap and rinse the carpet thoroughly.
- Dry the Carpet: Hang the mat on a rail or clothesline, ensuring it’s fully dry before placing it back inside your car.
Cleaning Cloth Car Carpets
Cleaning cloth car floor carpets is slightly more intricate, especially when dealing with liquid spills. Acting fast is essential to avoid any lasting stains or foul smells. The following steps outline the most effective way to clean cloth car carpets:
- Remove the Mat from the Car: Like with rubber mats, start the cleaning process by removing the carpet from your car.
- Vacuum the Carpet: Vacuum the carpet thoroughly on all sides to remove loose dirt and debris.
- Apply Baking Soda: Baking soda helps in absorbing unpleasant odors and aids in stain removal. Mix it with water and scrub gently with a rigid brush.
- Use Suitable Detergent: Apply a auto carpet detergent to clean off remaining stains and dirt. Your local big box store should sell some.
- Rinse and Vacuum Again: Post-cleaning, rinse the carpet and vacuum again to remove excess water and leftover dirt.
- Proper Drying: Ensure the mats are completely dry before placing them back to prevent damp smells.
Additional Tips for Effective Carpet Cleaning
In addition to these steps, remember the following tips for effective and safe carpet cleaning:
- Avoid using harsh detergents as they may damage your carpets. If it’s your first time using a product, test it first on a small area.
- Ensure complete drying to prevent mold and mildew. This is especially important in humid climates.
- Do this regularly. Cleaning enhances the lifespan of your car carpets.