Men Washing His Car

Cleaning Your Car
Tips on How to Clean Your Car

At Herb Chambers Alfa Romeo of Millbury, we fully understand the concerns our clients have about exposure to COVID-19, or coronavirus. In order to reduce the risk of exposure to germs outside their homes, many people in Millbury and beyond are wearing masks, frequently using hand sanitizer and wiping down items they purchase during their errands. What's easy to overlook, though, is that once you load those items into your Alfa Romeo, they are then touching interior surfaces. According to the World Health Organization, studies suggest that the coronavirus may live on surfaces for a few hours or up to several days. That means that you should be sanitizing the interior of your car to kill any germs it may have collected on your last visit to the grocery store or pharmacy. 

Car cleaner wiping car door with rag

How Long Does Coronavirus Survive on Surfaces?

Your Alfa Romeo is made up of many different materials, including leather and plastic. You'll find that several tools are needed to properly sanitize all the surfaces in your vehicle. According to the National Institutes of Health, the virus that causes COVID-19 is stable for up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to two to three days on plastic or stainless steel. Another study suggests that similar viruses can live on "inanimate surfaces like metal, glass or plastic for up to nine days."

Cleaning the interior of the car with a microfiber cloth

What's the Best Way to Sanitize My Car's Interior?

Always wash your hands before cleaning your Alfa Romeo. Do you have disposable gloves? It's smart to wear them when cleaning. Most common EPA-registered household disinfectants will work well for sanitizing your vehicle. Just be sure to read the product's label to make sure it's safe for the surface you're planning to use it on. Keep disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer in your vehicle, so you're always ready to wipe down surfaces in your Alfa Romeo.

Worker washing of interior leather seats

How to Clean Leather Seats in My Car

Does your Alfa Romeo have leather seats? When caring for them, only use approved leather cleaner. To ensure the cleaner you have works properly on your seats, simply spot test it on a hidden area within your vehicle's interior. When cleaning, always use a microfiber cloth to prevent scratching the material. Don't have leather cleaner? Mix two parts vinegar to one part water to make your own solution. Afterward, apply leather conditioner to give your seats an extra polish.

How to Disinfect Surfaces in My Car

The most important areas of your Alfa Romeo to keep clean are the dashboard and the steering wheel. Bacteria tends to collect in these spots, as air is cycled throughout the vehicle. To clean your dash, simply use soap and water. Dish soap can be used, as it works well on interior surfaces. Simply dampen the surface of what you'd like to clean, then scrub for 20-30 seconds. Pay extra special attention to surfaces you touch most frequently, like your dash and steering wheel. Other high-touch surfaces can include:

  • Door Handles
  • Door Buttons
  • Key Fob
  • Steering Wheel
  • Inside Door Buttons
  • Seat Belts
  • Gear Shifters
  • Touchscreens
  • Buttons on the Dash
  • Buttons for Lights
  • Buttons for Windshield Wipers
  • Glove Compartment

Do I Need to Disinfect My Car's Exterior?

Thanks to the sun, wind, rain and other elements from nature, your vehicle's exterior is less susceptible to germs. That being said, it's still smart to disinfect the areas you touch most frequently. These areas can include door handles, handle buttons and the gas cap.

Are There Disinfectants I Should Avoid Using in My Car?

If you want to avoid damaging your Alfa Romeo model's interior surfaces, don't use bleach or hydrogen peroxide to disinfect. These can damage the vinyl and plastics in your cabin. You should also avoid any ammonia-based cleaning products used to clean glass, as they can break down the vinyl on the dashboard. Heat and light may then cause your dashboard to become sticky.

Here at Herb Chambers Alfa Romeo of Millbury, we want to do our part to help educate our clients and keep them safe and healthy during this difficult time. If you have any questions about car care or need assistance, please don't hesitate to reach out to our Alfa Romeo dealership in Millbury, MA.