When you step foot into your car, there’s nothing worse than breathing in a terrible odor. Bad odors usually come from carpet stains that haven’t been cleaned in a while. To make matters worse, if you sit on a carpet stain, your clothes may get dirty and stinky as well. So, if you want to freshen up your car, it’s time to get rid of your carpet stains for good. Not only will you get rid of the odor, but your car will also look and feel nicer to ride in.

How to Clean Car Carpet Stains

You can prevent stains by using adhesive plastic floor mats to protect your vehicle’s carpet from becoming dirty. Premium quality auto dealer supplies including adhesive plastic floor mats can be purchased from MBR Marketing at https://mbrmarketing.com/adhesive-plastic-floor-mats.

Gather Your Supplies

Luckily, it doesn’t take too many supplies to get rid of carpet stains. All you need is the following:

  • A vacuum with a stretch hose
  • A towel or dry cloth
  • A hard-bristle brush
  • A clean bucket
  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Mild dish detergent

Using a vacuum with a stretch hose is required to vacuum all the hard-to-reach areas in your car. If your vacuum doesn’t reach your vehicle, you may need to plug it into an extension cord. Also, do not use paper towels or anything flimsy as an alternative for a towel or dry cloth. These will not do a good job of cleaning up carpet stains and may leave additional debris behind.

For this guide, you’ll be creating your own cleaning solution. With your clean bucket, fill it with one gallon of hot water. Then add a few drops of mild dish detergent and one cup of distilled white vinegar. Mix the solution around using any long tool.

Step 1: Throw out Garbage and Clean the Floor Mats

First and foremost, you’ll want to throw out any garbage inside your car, including wrappers, plastic bottles, and tissue paper. Get rid of anything that belongs in the trash. This ensures that no extra garbage is contributing to the bad odor. Next, take out the floor mats from your car and turn them upside down to eliminate all the accumulated dirt and debris. If you have a garbage can nearby, you can empty your floor mats into it. Otherwise, make sure to vacuum anything you drop to avoid littering.

Step 2: Vacuuming

Before you start vacuuming, keep your floor mats outside of your car so you can reach the carpets. Begin cleaning the carpets using the stretch hose of your vacuum. As you clean, press down with slight to medium pressure to ensure you pick up as much debris as possible. Make sure to get in all the hard-to-reach crevices. Since you’re already cleaning the carpets, you may as well continue vacuuming underneath the car seats.

After finishing up with the car floor, vacuum the car seats. Don’t forget to get in between the small holes beside the seat belts. Once you’re done with that, go ahead and vacuum all the cup holders. If your car has any compartments below your doors or behind the car seats, vacuum those as well. Lastly, clean out the trunk! Throw out anything that doesn’t belong in there and vacuum thoroughly. The goal is to clean as thoroughly as possible so that you don’t even see a speck of dirt.

Step 3: Cleaning the Carpet Stains

Now it’s time to clean any stains you see in your car. Grab your bucket of cleaning solution and wet your hard-bristle brush in it. Begin scrubbing the carpet stains in circular motions and press down with hard pressure. In this case, there’s no such thing as over scrubbing. Keep on cleaning for at least 1-2 minutes so that the solution gets deep into the carpet’s fibers, which will help remove the stains.

Before you stop scrubbing, ensure there’s no soapy residue left behind. The residue will give dirt something to hold onto if there’s any still there. You can get rid of the residue using some water and drying it with a towel or cloth. If after the first application the stain is still there, go ahead and repeat this step.

Once you’ve removed the stain, dry your carpet by blotting it until you’ve removed as much moisture as possible. As a reminder, do not use paper towels or anything flimsy as an alternative for a towel or dry cloth. Depending on how big of a stain you were dealing with, you may need to use more than one towel or cloth to see the best results. Avoid drying your carpet with anything damp.

Remember that stains that haven’t been cleaned for a while are usually more difficult to remove. You’ll likely need to scrub for several minutes to remove stubborn stains. If, after several minutes and the stains are still there, try using glass cleaner as a stronger solution. Let the cleaner soak into your carpets for five minutes before blotting out the moisture. In the future, make sure to clean up new stains as soon as possible, whether it be a coffee or soda spill. Diluting new spells with water and blotting them with a cloth will make it much easier to completely clean later.

Step 4: Vacuum Again and Air out

Even though you swept earlier, you’ll want to give your carpets another vacuum using the stretch hose. This will help suck up any leftover moisture that your towel or dry cloth couldn’t. Go over the cleaned stains multiple times and press the vacuum down with medium to hard pressure. Once you’re done with that, go ahead and air out your car. Open up all the doors or windows.

Leave your doors or windows open for at least 5-10 minutes to completely air out any lingering odors from your cleaning solution. This will also help your carpets to dry in case the vacuum missed any leftover moisture. Avoid stepping on your freshly cleaned carpets with dirty shoes. If there’s still an odor coming from your carpets, you can dust them with borax or baking soda. Dust generously and wait at least an hour for it to remove the smell. Then, vacuum whatever’s leftover.