How to Clean your Cloth Car Seats

We all remember that day when we realize how much our car has become a second home for us. Our car’s seats have begun to play host to crumbs, stains, and dirt. That road trip with the kids, the commute where coffee spilled out of your cup, and general wear have urged you to think about how to clean your cloth car seats.

Fortunately, regardless of the age of your car, you can restore the look of your car’s seats with the proper techniques and products. We’ll take you through each step of the process. 

How often should you clean your seats?

The best way to clean cloth car seats is to have a weekly and monthly approach to maintaining their look. Each week, you should likely make time to vacuum the seats to remove any crumbs, dust, or dirt. Depending on how often you drive your car, you may also want to treat stains each week. 

However, if you do not use your car a lot, it may make sense only to do thorough cleanings once a month.

What products work best for cloth car seats?

Before you clean your car seats, it’s best to have the necessary products read to go. You should grab an oxygen-based bleach to help pre-treat any stains. Next, you should acquire a car fabric cleaner like the highly rated Tuff Stuff Multi-Purpose Foam Cleaner Spray or Turtle Wax Power Out! Upholstery Cleaner to clear out the dirt, grime, and stains attached to your seats. 

Lastly, you’ll want to use a spray-on fabric protector to coat your seat and prevent stains from setting into your fabric car seats. The Chemical Guys Total Interior Cleaner and Protectant Spray is a great option to protect all surfaces — including cloth — against dirt and stains.  

These products can help you clear away stains that are impacting the aesthetic look of your seats and protect them from future damage.

Tips on How to Clean Cloth Car Seats: Vacuum, spray, scrub, repeat

Now that you have an idea of what you’ll need to start, it’s time to go over the process. Here are the steps for how to clean your cloth car seats.

1. Vacuum your Seats 

Start the process by vacuuming your cloth seats to remove dust, dirt, and any crumbs. This step will clear the way for you to begin using the cloth seat cleaner for your car and avoid pushing these materials further into your car’s fabric.  

2. Do a Pre-Treatment

This extra step will make it easier to get rid of stains. Combine oxygen-based bleach with a small amount of water, and spread it over any stains. Leave it for an hour to allow it to begin lifting the stain off your car seat’s fabric. A powder will likely form that you can vacuum or brush away in preparation for the next step.  

3. Spray the Car Fabric Cleaner

Be sure to look at the car fabric cleaner’s directions before getting started, as it’ll likely include instructions on whether you need to mix it with warm water and how much water you need to use per gallon. Take the formula and water blend and put it in a spray bottle for easy and effective distribution. Then, lightly spray it over your seat. If you encounter some stubborn stains, allow the formula to sit for a few minutes.  

4. Scrub the Stain

Grab a microfiber cloth or a brush and carefully scrub the stain to ensure the cleaner is fully rubbed into your car’s fabric. Also, be sure to wipe away any excess moisture to avoid oversaturating your seats.  

5. Repeat the Process

Start from the beginning, and continue this practice for your other seats and any other stains in your car. Once you’re done, let each seat air dry. 

How to protect your cloth car seats

Now it’s time to preserve the cleanliness you’ve worked so hard to produce. Grab a fabric protector to spray onto your car seats. This action will prevent any dirt, grime, or crumbs from settling into your car’s seats. This product protects the look of your car seats and helps diminish the amount of work you need to do in the future to clean your car seats.

To get started on cleaning your fabric car seats, you need the right products. A fabric cleaner from AutoZone can lift those hard-to-clean stains that have set into your car’s seats. And it can make the work of restoring your car seat’s look and cleanliness easy.

You can walk away with a professional-grade look without taking your car to the dealership.

Visit your local AutoZone to check out our selection of car fabric cleaners today to ensure the interior of your vehicle looks as good as new!

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