SafetyVehicle Maintenance

How to Sanitize a Vehicle after Someone You Don’t Know Rides in it

A lot of things have changed since the novel Coronavirus was discovered to have traveled to the United States, setting off waves of reactions across states and local communities.

For one thing, we’re a lot more concerned with cleanliness…which isn’t a bad thing. Studies have shown that many of the things that we touch without thinking about are a lot dirtier – on the physical and microscopic level – than we think.

For example, the gas pump! It is almost 12-thousand times filthier than a public toilet seat! And the average car steering wheel is four times dirtier than that same public toilet seat. Apparently, twelve-percent of Americans never clean their cars, and 32% only do it once a year!

A COVID-cing Argument

Vollara FreshAir Mobile device
The FreshAir Mobile reduces airborne contaminants in our vehicles

Here at Blue Ribbon Transportation, that’s unacceptable. We clean each of our cars after every ride...even when there’s not the risk of COVID-19 or any other flu or infection. And we use the revolutionary FreshAir Mobile technology from Vollara to keep the air inside the vehicle as clean, fresh and dust free as possible.

We’re committed to keeping our riders and their families safe.

We’d like to share some tips on the best way to clean and sanitize your vehicle – so it’s as fresh and virus-free as our rides are.

Car Cleaning Simplified

So the nice thing is, the supplies you’ll need are probably right at hand, or will take a short trip to the store to pick up. And they’re not that expensive:

  • Microfiber cloth
  • 70% Isopropyl Alcohol
  • Gentle dish soap (Ivory)
  • Disposable gloves
  • Bucket of water
  • Approved leather cleaner

Most of the surfaces of your car can be cleaned with just the Isopropyl alcohol. In fact, the people who make almost every part of your vehicles’ interior? They use the very same alcohol to do any final cleaning before the parts ship to car manufacturers. So they test every item to make sure it will not degrade when alcohol is applied.

You’ll want to make sure you hit the high touch areas of your car: the door handles – outside and inside, steering wheel, gear shift, seat upholstery, seat belts, mirrors, turn and wiper signal levers, any buttons on your radio and climate control unit, driver and passenger armrests, grab handles and seat adjustment levers and buttons – on all seats.

It takes a few minutes for the alcohol to be effective against the Coronavirus, so don’t wipe it off too quickly.

By the way, auto manufacturers recommend the microfiber cloth because of how it traps dust and particles. Using paper or standard towels can actually scratch what you’re cleaning with the accumulated dirt.

Cleanest Seat Around

For the actual seats and upholstery, though, you’ll want to avoid alcohol. Most imitation leather and leather seats have a protective urethane coating. This coating can be damaged if cleaned with alcohol too often or scrubbed too hard. Use the gentle dish soap with a little of the water to sanitize and wipe the seats down.

If you have leather or faux-leather seats, apply some of the approved leather cleaner to them after you wipe off the soap. This preserves their appearance – just don’t rub too hard. Some folks have actually rubbed the color of the leather right off.

Keep These Cleaners Inside the House

While bleach, hydrogen peroxide and ammonia-based products work well on us, the laundry and household surfaces, you won’t want to use them on your car. Bleach and hydrogen peroxide will damage the interior, and sometimes, because it’s a closed system, the bleach smell will linger.

Ammonia-based cleaners can seriously damage the anti-glare and anti-fingerprint coatings on your vehicles’ touch screens and consoles. Plus, you don’t want to take the chance of accidentally mixing the bleach and ammonia. Even in small amounts, it can be harmful to your health.

Oh, and be sure to wash your hands before you get back into the car later. No sense ruining all the good cleaning you’ve accomplished!

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