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Over time, grime and dust can build up in your car. Some parts of your car, such as the air vents and the various crevices, are especially challenging to clean. For some cleaning hacks, check out these secret car cleaning tips with household items such as toothpaste, olive oil, and Q-tips.

Clean the car headlights with toothpaste

Toothpaste in front of a headlight, highlighting secret car cleaning tips
Toothpaste and car headlight | Mark Putzer, MotorBiscuit

Not only is toothpaste great for cleaning your teeth, but it’s also effective for cleaning the headlights of a car. To make your headlights shine, reach for your tube of toothpaste. Gently rub the toothpaste on the headlights with a toothbrush or cloth, and then rinse them with water.

Use olive oil to clean the dashboard

Does your dashboard look dull? Pour a little olive oil onto a cloth and then rub the dashboard with it for a brighter appearance.

Clean the air vents in your car with Q-tips

Air vents are one of the most difficult parts of a car to clean. However, Q-tips or any other brand of cotton swabs are an effective remedy. Spray the air vents with a cleaning solution and then use a Q-tip to lift out the dust and grime. Cotton swabs are also useful for clearing other hard-to-reach areas, such as around the badge on a steering wheel and the crevices of the center console.

Use a paintbrush to clean your car’s hard-to-reach crevices 

Another tool that’s good for cleaning hard-to-reach crevices in your car is a paintbrush. Just spray the various crevices of your car’s interior and then use the paintbrush to wipe away the dust and grime.

Remove pet hair in your car with a squeegee

If you’re a pet owner and frequently take your fluffy friend for a drive, you likely have a car that’s inundated with pet hair. The rubber strip on squeegees is very effective at picking up pet hair. Go over the upholstery and carpet in your car with a squeegee, then suck up the dislodged pet hair with a vacuum cleaner. You can also use the squeegee method for removing pet hair around your home.

Use shaving cream to remove stains in your car

Along with shaving the hair off your body, shaving cream is very versatile for cleaning. To help remove stubborn stains on the upholstery and carpet of your car, spray them with shaving cream, as detailed by GlasglowLive. Rub the shaving cream on a stain with your hands or a brush, and then wash it off with a damp cloth. You can also use a fabric vacuum cleaner to remove excess moisture.

Clean your car’s windows and windshield with vinegar

Vinegar is another versatile cleaning aid. This includes cleaning a car’s windshield and windows, especially for preventing smears. First, clean the windows and windshield with your cleaning solution of choice. After that, wipe them with a vinegar and water mixture at a 1:1 ratio. Then, rinse the windshield and windows with water. 

Use silicone molds in your car’s cup holders to prevent drink spillage

One of the best ways to have a clean car is to prevent messes in the first place. A common source of messes in a car is spilled drinks. However, you can prevent drink spillage by slotting silicone molds in the cup holders. The silicone molds can catch any spillage from drinks or crumbs from food. When the silicone molds get dirty, you can just take them out, clean them, and slot them back in again.


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