How to Disinfect a Vehicle
Before disinfecting the vehicle, remove as much contamination, like dirt or loose debris, as possible. This step allows the disinfectants to work more effectively by making better contact with the surfaces you're cleaning. For example, thoroughly vacuum the vehicle before application.
Disinfecting Hard Surfaces and Leather
The safest disinfectants to use on a vehicle are standard disinfectant wipes and general-purpose disinfectant sprays. For hard surfaces, while an aerosol spray would work, we like to stick with disinfectant wipes because of their controlled application.
These wipes can be applied to most hard surfaces, including plastic, wood, metal, rubber, and leather. We recommend avoiding touchscreen navigation/entertainment systems, but more on that later. While using premoistened disinfectant wipes, it's important to be as thorough as possible when wiping an area. This includes getting into small areas around window controls, buttons, knobs, the steering column, and more.
Once you've wiped an area enough to prevent any chance of leaving behind water spots, we recommend following up the damp cloth with a dry towel to remove excess liquid.
Disinfecting Fabric Seats and Carpet
When disinfecting carpets and fabric seats, a disinfectant wipe is safe to run across the surface. However, we suggest using a standard all-purpose spray disinfectant to get a deeper, more effective clean.
When applying, don't soak the fabric with the spray. Allow the spray to dwell for the proper time recommended by the manufacturer; however, similar to the wipe application, we recommend following up your spray with a dry towel once it has been allowed to dwell. This step is optional, but it can be helpful to dry the seats more quickly and remove extra debris.
Other Tips and Areas to be Cautious
We recommend extreme caution regarding touch screens like navigation or entertainment systems. These screens are very sensitive and can easily be damaged by alcohol-based cleaners. Harsh cleaners can damage the screen's anti-glare coatings and cause other issues, such as blushing. It's always a good idea to check the manufacturers' screen care recommendations before cleaning them. If you're in doubt, stick to the safest option: wipe the screen down with warm water on a damp towel.
Finally, don't use harsh bleach-based cleaners. While these may work as a disinfectant option, they come with a high risk of damaging a vehicle's colors and materials.