With the continued spread of Covid-19 in Malaysia, this article offers some tips on how to sanitize your car to make sure it is free of germs and bacteria. Most people in the country are already practicing the habit of washing hands, and cleaning and disinfecting relevant contact points to prevent the spread of Covid-19. But what about the interior of your car?
Best techniques to sanitize the interior of a car
e-hailing drivers and even the general public should take necessary precautions during this period as Covid-19 cases surge. And it begins with the interior of the car.
If you or someone else who has been in your car shows symptoms of the illness, you should clean frequently touched surfaces, including the steering wheel, door handles, the shift lever, any buttons or touch screens, wiper and turn signal stalks, passenger and driver door armrests, rear door handles, and seat adjusters. For e-hailing and cab drivers who are driving their own cars or rented cars, or those who live in areas with high Covid-19 case numbers, it is very important to regularly clean the surfaces mentioned above. It is advisable to clean the surfaces after dropping off a passenger.
Sanitizing and cleaning a car’s interior is not that difficult, but a car’s interior is less durable than a work table or a laptop and you want to clean them without damaging them. So what do you do? Don’t worry, with some exceptions, there are many cleaning solutions found in the house that kill the Covid-19 virus in a car without damaging its interior.
First up are the common alcohol solutions, which contains at least 60 percent alcohol. For the most part, nearly every interior surface of a car can be cleaned with isopropyl alcohol. Isopropyl alcohol is applicable and safe to be used on a car’s surfaces from plastic trims to painted chrome to imitation leather. Whether it’s plastic, a painted surface or leather, there’s no signs of degradation when exposed to pure isopropyl alcohol. On the other hand, car leather and imitation leather with urethane coatings can be cleaned with alcohol, but over time they are susceptible to damage and discolouration. Therefore, all-leather interiors require the use of a proper leather cleaner and conditioner.
Whatever you do, don’t use bleach or hydrogen peroxide on the inside of your car. Bleach kills the virus but it will likely damage your car’s upholstery. Also, ammonia-based cleaners are not advisable on car touch screens, as they can damage their anti-glare and anti-fingerprint coatings.
If the above chemicals are unavailable, you still have the always dependable soap and water. Constant washing, with soap and water can also destroy the virus but don’t overdo it. In addition, soap and water are also safe for most car interiors, especially fabrics and older leather that may have begun to crack.
Lastly, when cleaning the interior be sure to use a microfiber cloth on all surfaces. A microfibre is made of a fabric that consists of tiny little loops to capture and sweep away dirt and dust particles before they can scratch delicate or shiny surfaces.
Once you’ve finished cleaning, don’t forget to wash your hands before and after driving.