Coronavirus Outbreak: Here are a few ways to disinfect the interior of your car

The whole world is facing one of the most challenging and demanding situations with the growing concern and threat over Coronavirus a.k.a COVID-19. The government, doctors, etc, have all asked us to practice the necessary hygiene and social distancing to break the chain of the spread of this corona.

In many places, public transport has shut down too, which means in a case of emergency you may be required to use your car. And being a country that has more than 30 million cars on the road, it becomes necessary that we practice the necessary hygiene and cleanliness in the car as we would in our own houses.

Image: Pixabay

In case you are required to drive the car, make sure it’s disinfected first. And that is possibly best done by using Hydrogen Peroxide, which you can try and buy from a medical or general store.

The easiest and the best way to use it is to spray it on the surface that you want to disinfect in the car and then wipe it with a clean cloth. The fact that Hydrogen Peroxide is not corrosive, means you can spray it on any metal surface. Just be careful not to let it come in contact with fabric to avoid discolouring.

(Also read: Coronavirus Lockdown: How to maintain your vehicle when it remains unused for a long time)

If you don’t have hydrogen peroxide at home or are unable to buy it, you can also opt for any household detergents or disinfectants such as washing powders, bleaches, conditioners or liquid soaps and shampoos. Dettol solution diluted in water should be effective too. One must make sure to wear face masks and gloves while doing the disinfection process to avoid contact with dust and germs. Also, once used, make sure you discard the gloves and masks in a closed dustbin for safe disposal to avoid spread of germs.

It is also likely you are bored working from home and want to do something else than just watch Netflix. So why not shower your prized possession parked in the garage with some TLC (tender loving care). Many owners like to keep their car shining from outside more than the inside as it’s easier to clean and is also the only visible profile.

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However, keeping the car clean from inside is more important as that’s the space you spend your maximum time in. Firstly, make sure the cabin is properly vacuumed to remove all the dust and grime that gets deposited with time. Also, make sure the carpets and the more difficult to reach areas like the front under seats section, the recess in the front console, bottle holder slots on the door trims and also the gaps between the seats and the console are cleaned thoroughly. Leather seats are comparatively easier to clean with cream solutions whereas the fabric seats need to be dealt with by proper vacuuming and then spraying of a cleaning or soap solution followed by brushing the area that has been sprayed.

The buttons and the knobs on the central console and the steering wheel used for various functions in the car and also the door locks are the parts that we come in contact with more often and they get oily and sticky. It is important that unlike the seats, you do not spray on these controls but wipe them gently with multi-surface cleaning creams like Min, etc, most of which you can find online.

Image: Overdrive

Another important part of an automobile that needs thorough cleaning is the air-conditioning unit that might attract the virus from outside and then transmit it to the occupants inside. Hence, the AC units should be disinfected to get rid of any bacteria or mould.

Start with cleaning the vents, which might sound the easiest but is also one of the most tricky parts, as dust tends to accumulate in the smaller slots. Use a foam paintbrush as its sturdy bristles are also flexible to reach tight spots. This should be followed by cleaning the cabin filter, usually located around the glovebox. The best practise is to replace the cabin filter at least once every year.

However, you can regularly clean it using an air-compressor to get rid of the dust particles. Once that is done, the blades of the AC condenser fan should be wiped whereas the mesh of the condenser can be cleaned with pressurised air and sprayed with water or cleaned properly with a cloth. One must take care not to mess around with the other circuits around these parts in the engine bay.

And lastly, have a box of tissues and wet wipes along with a hand sanitiser in the car as it can come in handy when you are travelling alone or with family, children, and friends. All the personal habits that you have been following at your home to prevent spread of coronavirus, should also be practised in the cabin. Simple things like washing of hands before entering the car and after leaving the car, wiping off the steering wheel and gear lever with a wet wipe and also regularly sanitising your hands is highly advisable.

(Also read: New Audi A3 sedan with new design unveiled, expected to come to India in mid-2021)