How to Turn Your Dirty Car into a Clean CarI Like Clean Cars, and I Cannot Lie

I freakin’ love my minivan!  It may not be cool, but it’s so dang comfy and practical.  Seven people or a sheet of plywood can fit inside.  My sweet ride is a 2012 and, in my heart, I know that we’ll have to part company at some point but that will be a sad day.  Until then, I’m going to take good care of her.

Even though I keep this car pretty neat, my old Explorer was always disgusting.  You just can’t be responsible for keeping your car clean when you have little ones.  They pee.  They barf.  They poop.  Toddlers also eat constantly so the puffs and Cheerios are an issue, as is juice.  Having clean cars at this stage of the game is the absolute lowest priority, in my opinion.  If that is the stage you’re in, don’t you worry a bit.  You just survive and keep everyone alive.  Pretty soon those babies will go to school and you’ll have a little time to tidy up.

Ridin’ Dirty

So you’ve been riding around in a toxic waste dump.  No biggie.  But let’s get your car super clean and make it smell good inside so you don’t have to worry about the EPA tracking you down.  There are two ways to go about this:  have it detailed by a professional or do it yourself.  A professional will charge close to $100 but you can do it yourself in a couple of hours for free.  I would rather spend $100 on Jack Rogers, but that’s just me.

Let’s work on the inside first.  Follow these four steps:

Get everything that doesn’t belong out.  Throw trash away and put everything else where it goes.

Get your duster and dust everything. Use a dust rag to get in all of the crevices (ugh, that word is so gross).  Wipe any sticky spots with a wet cloth.  Clean all of the windows, including the windshield.

Vacuum everything really good.  Use the attachments to get in between the seats and the console, under the seats, etc.  I use our Shop Vac but you can use your regular vacuum too.

Open all of the doors and spray the carpet down with Febreeze.  To keep it smelling nice, put an old scented candle under the seat.

Aahhh, that’s better!  Your dirty car is half-way to being a clean car.  Now for the exterior.

Workin’ at the Carwash

This is the fun part!  Get your kids outside, get a hose, a bucket of water with a little Dawn squirted in, soft cloths and turn ‘em loose.  You sit back in your lawn chair and supervise.  Make sure they:

Spray it all down good.

Wash everything, including the bumpers and wheels.

Rinse before the soap dries.

Clean the windows with Windex as the final step.

This may not be the most detailed wash job but it will be fun.  Let go of perfection and enjoy!

Wow, lookin’ good!  Remember that schedule you made for cleaning your house?  Do the same with your car:

Every time you fill up with gas, throw all of the trash away.

Everyone grabs all of their stuff when they go in the house.

Once a month or so, have a car wash party in your driveway.  Clean cars look sweet in your driveway and will make your neighbors envious, for sure.Free Printale Cleaning Bundle

Pimp My Ride

While we’re talking about maintaining our cars, it’s worth mentioning that you should not ignore those pesky lights that come up on the dash from time to time.  Last summer, my brake light came on and I didn’t want to deal with it.  I finally came clean to my husband and he took it in to find out I was dangerously close to losing my brakes completely as the brake line was damaged.  No bueno. Pay attention and make car maintenance a priority.  Your babies ride in this hunk of metal every day so keep it safe, sister!

Sweet!  You will never be embarrassed to have anyone ride with you again.  Check out my free printable Cleaning Bundle to keep you on track.

Kim Mayo