Fresh, airy spaces are preferred by all when it comes to living spaces. Sunlight pouring in through the window and light breeze serve as selling points for a house. On the contrary, the enclosed environment of a car is a whole new story. People prefer tightly shut windows and cool air conditioners here. Sunlight is a big no. These preferences lead bacteria to burgeon and fester on suitable ground. If not eliminated in a timely manner with the best ways to kill germs in cars or disinfect your vehicle, these bacteria will most likely pose great health issues. Common among these issues are cold, fever, infections, flu, cough, skin infections, etc…One needs to know how to clean a car effectively to kill different types of germs and bacteria present in the car. Let’s get started.

6 Best Ways to Kill Germs in Car – Disinfect your Vehicle - Acko

6 Ways to Kill Germs in Car:

Germs and other bacteria pose a great threat to you and your family’s health especially when you spend long hours inside your car. However, there are effective ways in which you can maintain cleanliness and kill germs in your car. Take a look at the following methods you can use if you are wondering how to kill germs in a car.

1) Remove the Dust and Mould:

One of the major hosts for germs and bacteria is dust. If one looked at dust under a microscope, they would find various types of germs festering on dust particles. Since a car has a tightly sealed environment, the chances of bacteria growing inside are much more than open spaces.

You can remove most of the dust from the interior of your car with the help of a brush or a blob of slime to reach tricky places. Complete the process with the help of a vacuum cleaner. Don’t forget to remove any food particles as these can become a breeding ground for mold.

2) Clean/Replace the Cabin Air Filter:

The cabin air filter is responsible for cleaning the air inside a car. You should consider changing the air filter if you notice that the air is not cool enough, or if unpleasant, moldy air is being circulated in the car. If you keep using the same dust-accumulated air filter there is a chance that you and your family are breathing the bacteria in the car’s air conditioning system. Consider changing this air filter at least every 6 months. If you use your car for off-roading, you may have to change the filter more frequently.

3) Using Car-safe Disinfectants:

Nowadays, you can buy disinfectants that are meant specifically to disinfect the interiors and exteriors of a car. You may get these in the form of wipes or gels. Use a good quality disinfectant on the surface that is frequently being touched. For example, the steering wheel, gear stick, armrest, touchscreen, buttons, door handles, mirrors, etc… The chances of you catching an infection are reduced greatly if these surfaces are kept clean.

4) Clean the Entire Upholstery:

Things like car seats, cushions, etc… become a fertile ground for germs and bacteria. You can clean the seats and other fabrics, first by using a vacuum cleaner to remove loose dust and then with soapy water or an alcohol-based solution.

While cleaning the upholstery of your car, remember that aggressive cleaning is not required. On the contrary, you may end up damaging these surfaces. Do not scrub hard while cleaning the seats if they are covered with leather, else there will be discolouration.

Be careful about water getting absorbed in the cushions. If it does, the damp patch can pose a problem of its own. Instead of killing the germs, wet cushions (plus summer heat) will serve as a perfect place for them to grow. The best practice is to dampen a cloth with alcohol solution or soapy water and clean the seats.

5) Use a Sanitizer Spray:

Another step towards disinfecting your car is spraying a sanitizer in the car. You must be aware that sanitizer manufacturers claim that their products are capable of killing 99.9% of germs and bacteria. So, don’t forget to spray a sanitizer after you give the car a thorough cleanse. This will help you kill any residual microbes that can cause an infection. These days, sanitizer sprays come in a variety of fragrances as well. You can choose between lemon, lavender, orange, mango, lemongrass, and many more.

6) Let Sunlight Pour in:

It is said that sunlight is one of the best natural disinfectants that are available free of cost. Thus, let the interiors of your car be exposed to the good old UV rays after you disinfect your car by cleaning and other methods. Letting in some fresh air will also be helpful if you are not parked in a dusty spot.

Beware that sunlight may not be fully effective in places it cannot reach. For example, the area under the glovebox, under the seat, below the steering wheel, etc. Do not use sunlight as an ultimate disinfectant, it may not be as effective as cleaning and sanitizing using soap and sprays.

With the help of the above methods you now understand how to clean the car’s interior. Let’s take a look at how to clean the car’s exterior.

Also,read: 10 Factors Which Determine Car Insurance Premium?

How to Clean a Car’s Exterior Surfaces?

Giving your car a nice clean bath would seem like a chore. But it can be quite enjoyable if done correctly. Additionally, you also save some bucks otherwise spent on a car wash.

The easiest and fastest way to clean a car would be using a hosepipe. But if you wish to save water then the good old bucket method is the next best choice. Here are the things that you will require for washing the exterior of your car:

  • Bucket
  • Small container
  • Sponge
  • Squeegee
  • Warm water
  • Car wash liquid/shampoo
  • Microfiber towels

Step 1: Begin with removing loose, dry dirt from the car’s surface. Either splash water or use a blast of air for the purpose. 

Step 2: Dip the sponge in soapy water and start gently rubbing the surface.

Step 3: In this step, you need to remove the soap before it begins to dry. Splash water by using a small container until the entire soap is removed.

Step 4: Wipe the surface with a microfiber cloth until it is completely dry. Dry the glass (windows, windshield, mirrors, etc…) with the help of a squeegee.

Step 5: Open the boot and other doors to wipe any residual water or soap.

Polishing your car is an optional step. You can use a good car polish or wax and buff it on the car’s surfaces to coat them with a good shine.

Also, read: Long-term Comprehensive Car Insurance Policy

How to Kill Coronavirus Living Inside Your Car?

The coronavirus or COVID-19, that is responsible for killing thousands and endangering the lives of millions of people around the world, can surprisingly be killed very easily. Since this virus can spread through sneezing or coughing, a car’s environment becomes a perfect enclosure for transmission. Here is how you can eliminate the virus from your car:

1) Maintain Hygiene:

Politely ask the passengers to cover their mouths while coughing or sneezing in the car. The virus will not accumulate on any surface of the car if hygiene is maintained.

2) Clean the Car Regularly:

Scroll up to find 6 ways in which you can kill germs from your car. These methods are effective against coronavirus as well. Disinfect your car regularly to kill any harmful microbes or viruses from the car.

3) Avoiding Driving Frequently:

According to the World Health Organization, the coronavirus is automatically destroyed within 12-16 hours if untouched. Consider not taking your car for a ride for at least 12-16 hours after the previous one. That is, quarantine your car for at least 12-16 hours in between rides.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can vinegar be used to kill coronavirus?

Vinegar is made up of 5-8% acetic acid and may include other chemicals or flavourings. While acetic acid does kill other types of bacteria including Staphylococcus aureus and E. col, it may not be as effective on COVID-19. Thus, avoid the use of vinegar while disinfecting the house and car against coronavirus.

What are the types of microbes found inside a car?

It is found that around 700 strains of bacteria can thrive inside your car at different locations. Bacteria like Staphylococcus, Propionibacterium, Bacillus, Actinomyces, Corynebacterium, and fungi like Penicillium, Alternaria, Aspergillus, and Cladosporium can be found in a car. Thus, give your car a thorough cleanse from time to time.

How frequently should I wash my car?

In a normal situation, one should wash their car at least 2 to 3 times a week. However, since the outbreak of coronavirus, you should consider disinfecting the car at least every two days.

Can I wash my freshly painted car?

Yes, but only after you allow the paint to dry fully. Else there are chances of the paint getting ruined during car wash. Also, be sure to gently clean the car and do not use force while scrubbing the exterior.