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With COVID-19 causing record numbers of disinfectant and cleaning supply sales (and shortages) around the world, it’s natural to worry about getting your car’s interior clean as a whistle. The team at CARSTAR Robert’s Collision & Repair knows your family’s safety is your number one priority. Still, we don’t want you to ruin your car in the process! Read on to find out the best practices to use when disinfecting your vehicle.
First, a little bit of information about how COVID-19 reacts to certain surfaces: the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 is passed from person to person when they cough or sneeze. Tiny droplets are released, carrying the virus, which a healthy person then breathes in. You can also catch the virus if you touch a surface that has the virus on it and then touch your eyes, nose, or mouth. The virus can survive on a variety of non-porous surfaces for multiple days. The virus survives on porous materials for a far shorter time, though, frequently only hours.
Before you begin cleaning your car, using a pair of disposable gloves is recommended. On non-porous surfaces that allow for the virus to live for an extended period, an alcohol solution of at least 70% is necessary to kill the virus. While a bleach or hydrogen peroxide solution will also destroy the virus, they will also cause damage to the vinyl and plastics most modern cars use today. You should also refrain from using any ammonia-based cleaning products to disinfect your car. These are usually found in ‘blue glass cleaners,’ and will break down the vinyl on your dashboard. Over time, this will make your vinyl sticky when exposed to light and heat. If you can’t get your hands on any alcohol or cleaners, you can give your car a rub down with good old soap and water. You may need to scrub down surfaces longer than you would with another cleaner, but with some elbow grease and patience, soap and water will do the trick.
Once you have your alcohol solution, taking a paper towel or rag, thoroughly wipe down all non-porous surfaces. You’ll want to pay special attention to those areas that get heavy traffic and are often touched. This will include your door handles inside and out, any window controls or cupholder areas, and armrests. You’ll need to spend some time on the steering wheel, gear shift, parking brake, and any other controls you use while driving. Go over your radio controls, air conditioning and heater controls, and your center console and glove box thoroughly.
For some final notes, if your car hasn’t seen a good scrub in some time, you may want to wash it down before disinfecting. First, go over your car’s interior with a soap and water solution to break down any build-up before letting it dry. Then, go over those same surfaces with your alcohol solution. While time-consuming, any disinfecting down the line will be easier and take less time this way. Remember to throw away any disposable gloves and paper towels, and promptly wash any rags or buckets you may have used. And don’t forget – wash your hands for at least 20 seconds once you’re done!
CARSTAR Robert's Collision & Repair in Monterey would love to be your go-to auto body shop whenever you want an excellent, honest facility to repair your vehicle. We are here for all of your auto body repairs, paint jobs, and auto detailing needs. We strive to be your one-stop auto shop and we work hard to provide you with an outstanding customer service experience! Our skilled technicians provide the best service in the region. Make your appointment today!We're located at 234 Ramona Ave, Monterey, CA. 93940. We look forward to your visit!