Cleaning the Car Before and After that Summer Roadtrip

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Summertime is the perfect time to get on the road and find adventures! Many people will think back to summer and remember a special road trip. While summer road trips can be amazing, they can wreak havoc on your car if you aren’t careful. The good news is, there are things you can do to keep the mess out of summer road trips. Check out our messless summer road trip tips!

Messless Summer Road Trip Tips

Clean Before the Trip

When planning a road trip it can be easy to focus on the itinerary and all of the packing needs. While these things are incredibly important, it’s also important to invest some time into cleaning before the trip. Taking the time to clean the car before the road trip can set you up for success all summer. Even better, it can help you to keep the car clean all summer. Here are a few tips for cleaning the car before a summer road trip:

  • Start with decluttering – The car that got you through the busier times of the year can quickly become overfilled with everything you’ve needed. These items may have served you well but they can be a big problem during a summer road trip. Take some time to remove all items from the vehicle that will get in the way of your summer road trip.
  • Clean all the cloth surfaces – This can include carpets, upholstery, and even ceiling liners. These areas can trap dust, dirt, and mess. Use a steamer cleaner carpet cleaner product to thoroughly clean these areas. This will help you to remove messes and keep things cleaner on the road.
  • Change the air filter – Did you know your car has its own air filter? Changing out your car’s cabin air filter can help you to have better air quality in the car while on the road. Take a few minutes to change the air filter so that you can truly enjoy your trip.
  • Clean all the hard surfaces – Use a kid-safe all-purpose cleaner on a microfiber cloth to remove dust and germs from the hard surfaces of your vehicle. Taking the time to do this will set you up to keep things clean while on the road!

Preparation Can Be a Game Changer!

When it comes to planning a road trip it is important to invest some time into preparing the car for the trip. Not only do you need to take the time to clean the car, but you also need to do a few things to help it stay clean while on the road. Spending time on preparation can save you a great deal of time on post-trip clean-up. The beautiful thing is, that most of these things will not require much time from you. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Put in a car cleaning kit – Road trips can be an amazing way to connect but they can also get messy pretty quickly. Put together a car cleaning kit to use while on the road. Include kid-safe all-purpose cleaner and microfiber cloths for quick clean-ups. It can also help to include a carpet stain cleaner for spills and messes while on the road. Small trash bags can also help with picking up as you go. For everything you need to keep your car clean, check out our Clean Car Bundle. This bundle includes a fast acting, water based, grease cleaner/motor oil remover, gentle enough for laundry stains and auto carpet cleaning. All with a fresh Mountain Peak Scent! Plus a car scrubber pole, 2 microfiber duster/washer mitts, and 2 microfiber cleaning cloths.
  • Set up storage in advance – One of the potentials for messes is clutter and items getting thrown in random places. Take some time before the trip to set up storage options for things like snacks, tablets, cords, and more. These storage spaces can help you to keep the car cleaner.
  • Assign jobs before you leave – When taking a road trip with your family or friends it can help to assign jobs before you leave. This can mean saying that some people are in charge of putting everything back in storage containers. Others may be in charge of grabbing trash and disposing of it. With small children, it can help to ask them to pick up a set number of trash pieces. That simple direction can help them to make cleaning manageable.

Clean After the Trip!

Spending time on the road with family or friends can be a great adventure. Sometimes focusing on the fun means that the car doesn’t stay as clean as we might like. This can be sand from a beach trip, dirt from a hiking trail, or your child’s hidden collection of rocks from every stop. Even the best planning before the trip can’t prevent some messes. Here are a few tips for cleaning up after a road trip:

  • Unpack everything – When you get back from a road trip, you can sometimes be more tired than you were when you started. It can be tempting to leave items in the car for later. Take some time to completely unpack your vehicle. It will help you to see which areas will need your attention with cleaning.
  • Vacuum all of the surfaces – Dust, dirt, and mess can quickly accumulate on a road trip. Take some time to use a carpet stain remover and vacuum your entire car. It will help you to remove sand, dirt, leaves, and other messes that get tracked into the vehicle. It’s also a great way to remove things like stray snacks that may have rolled under seats.
  • Clean all the hard surfaces – Use a kid-safe all-purpose cleaner on a microfiber cloth to remove dust and germs from the hard surfaces of your vehicle. Removing smudges, germs, and messes from the hard surfaces will help you to avoid stains and help your car serve you going forward. Make sure to clean door handles and buttons as well.
  • Reset the car for future needs – After you have cleaned out the car, take some time to switch out the way your car is set up. Put in storage solutions that will serve you well for your responsibilities when you return from the trip. This can include spaces for sports equipment, options for groceries, and a cleaning kit for future maintenance.
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