Car interiors can (and whenever possible, should) be kept as pristine as the paintwork. This gives you greater ownership pleasure and enhances your vehicle’s resale value.
You don’t have to spend every weekend detailing your car interior, though.
Apart from a weekly vacuuming, the rest of these maintenance tasks can be done every two or three months.
Here are our four surefire ways of keeping your car interior looking (and smelling) like new.
CAR INTERIOR TIP #1: GOOD WINDOW FILM
The sun is the biggest ageing factor when it comes to car interiors. Harsh UV rays and hot air will wear out your seats and trimmings if your windows are bare.
If your car doesn’t come with window film, we strongly suggest getting them tinted. Good brands to consider include V-Kool and RikeCool.
Don’t forget to ensure that the front and rear windows’ visible light transmission (VLT) levels meet LTA requirements.
CAR INTERIOR TIP #2: WEEKLY VACUUMING
You’ll be surprised how much dirt, foliage and gravel your shoes can pick up and transfer into the cabin.
Hair and pet fur can easily accumulate, too. Vacuuming your car weekly will keep dirt and potential allergens at bay.
While you’re at it, take a few minutes to throw away any empty bottles, receipts or carpark coupons that may have piled up.
You might even be complimented by impressed friends and relatives.
CAR INTERIOR TIP #3: GET NEW FLOOR MATS
Sometimes, all you need to spruce up your cabin is a set of new floor mats. If your current ones already have holes in them, toss them out!
Think of floor mats like pants. You wouldn’t wear torn pants with big holes in them, would you?
It won’t matter how clean the space is if your passengers notice that they’re putting their footwear on ratty floor mats.
CAR INTERIOR TIP #4: CLEAN THE DASHBOARD
Apart from dusting the dashboard, you should invest in a quality trim cleaner from a reputable brand.
Apply it sparingly using a sponge applicator and remove any excess with a microfibre cloth.
You can add the product to plastic door panels as well.
This will darken your black trimmings and depending on the product, add a layer of sheen.
CAR INTERIOR TIP #5: CLEAN AND CONDITION THE LEATHER
Most cars in Singapore come with leather upholstery and they need to be periodically cleaned and conditioned.
You can do this by either using two separate products or a 2-in-1 formula for convenience.
Always test the product/s on a small inconspicuous area of the seats first, such as the side of the squabs, in case the colour runs.
BONUS TIP: SERVICE YOUR CAR AIR-CON
Your interior might look great even after four of five years, but how does it smell?
If you’re using air-fresheners to mask odours, your air-con might be the problem.
Get your workshop to service the air-con system and ensure that the condenser and evaporator are properly cleaned.
Changing the cabin filter will not remove odours. And the generous use of air-fresheners might just make your passengers sick.