Cleaning a Car or Truck Interior During Coronavirus

how to clean car interior during coronavirus

Do you want to clean a car’s interior fabric and plastic for Coronavirus, without creating damage to your surfaces?

By this time, we’ve all heard that cleaning common surfaces and hand-washing are some of the best methods to defend against the spread of Covid-19. When it comes to this, the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and health experts across the globe are of one mind. Cleaning saves lives.

This is especially true when you believe that someone with the novel Coronavirus has been inside your car. Cars possess many frequently touched surfaces. Examples of these are your steering wheel, door handle, and shift lever to name a sample few of the many. In this case, immediate disinfection can mean all the difference. Moreover, if you habitually transport passengers, cleaning these surfaces is crucial.

So how can you clean all those surfaces without doing damage?

Sample High-Touch Areas

Door Handles


Engine Start Button

Seat Belt

Seat Adjuster

Window Control

Mirror Adjuster

Gear Shift


Signal Indicator

All Dashboard Controls




What You Shouldn’t Do:

To begin with, there are several alternatives to be avoided at all costs. Hydrogen peroxide and bleach, for example, can damage your car’s upholstery. Additionally, any cleaners with an ammonia base should be avoided. These can cause damage to touch screens by removing their anti-glare and anti-fingerprint coating. Furthermore, avoid anything abrasive when cleansing a touchscreen device. This includes paper towels or tissues. Finally, use common sense. Don’t treat all surfaces equally.

What You Should Do to Clean for Coronavirus?


First, wear gloves when disinfecting and cleaning a car. The CDC specifically recommends the following:

“Gloves and any other disposable PPE used for cleaning and disinfecting the vehicle should be removed and disposed of after cleaning; wash hands immediately after removal of gloves and PPE with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.”
alcohol to kill coronavirus in car

Apply Alcohol-Based Cleaners

The CDC suggests using alcohol-based cleaners of at least 70% alcohol is the most effective. Alcohol not only kills SARS-CoV-2, but it’s surfaces of your car. Just keep it away from the leather upholstery. Most leather seats have a protective layer, but unless you know the manufacturer’s specifications, it is much better to be safe than sorry.

how to clean covid-19 in vehicle with soap

Soap and Water

Another great solution that is effective on most surfaces, including leather seats, is a simple mixture of water and soap. Just be sure not to scrub too hard, or get the fabrics too damp.

using microfiber to clean car interior

100% Cotton Cloth or Microfiber Towels

In general, microfiber towels and/or old cotton t-shirts are a useful solution that can be used just about anywhere.

Regarding Leather Surfaces

Although we’ve mentioned leather several times above, it’s worth repeating. Avoid bleach, hydrogen peroxide, ammonia-based cleaners, and alcohol. Leather-specific cleaning wipes are ideal, but a damp cloth with water and soap is likely to do the trick.

Stopping Coronavirus

Certainly, the most effective solution to stop the spread of Covid-19 is to simply stay home and not share a vehicle. If you must share a car, however, drive a rental, get your car serviced, or transport others, then frequent disinfecting is the most effective method to keep yourself and others safe.

Professional Cleaning

Without fail, if you are truly worried, a professional detailing or cleaning will be the most effective treatment. Contact our service department for a complete list of detailing services and treatments currently on offer.

Cleaning a Car or Truck Interior During Coronavirus | Sterling McCall Nissan