You may know how to change your oil, rotate your tires, and install a new battery. You might even know your way around a spark plug. But do you know how to sanitize your car?


This often overlooked preventive maintenance task can be just as critical to your health as a working airbag, and yet so few of us take the time — or even know how — to do it. 


Below are some car sanitation tips to help you get rid of the germs and bacteria while not damaging your vehicle.

Tips for Better Car Sanitation

There’s a right and wrong way to sanitize your car. Follow the tips below for a cleaner and healthier commute.

Where to Clean

Focus your attention on the areas you and your passengers touch the most. These include:

  • Door handles
  • Seatbelts and seatbelt fasteners
  • Steering wheel
  • Shifting knob
  • Window buttons or cranks
  • Door locking buttons
  • Turn signal, headlight, and wiper blade stalks
  • Radio, GPS, and other dashboard buttons and dials
  • Heating and air conditioning controls and vents
  • Parking brake
  • Cup holders and consoles 
  • Mirrors 
  • Grab handles
  • Keys

What to Use

Most automobile manufacturers use alcohol to clean the interiors of vehicles, so a pack of alcohol-based disinfectant wipes is a good thing to keep on hand in your glove compartment or center console. 


Simple soap and water is also effective, and can be kept in a spray bottle along with a microfiber cloth for drying. Don’t scrub too hard as you may end up removing some of the surface coatings or dyes in your interior.


Sanitizing your hands is a good way of keeping your car sanitized. Keep a bottle of hand sanitizer with you and use it before entering your car to prevent the transfer of germs. 

What Not to Use

Bleach, hydrogen peroxide, and ammonia are all effective at killing germs, but they are also effective at damaging the plastic and vinyl surfaces of your car. Stay away from these products when sanitizing your car. 


And while window cleaning solution can obviously be used on your windows, it should not be used to clean the glass on a touchscreen display. 

Service Your Vehicle in Mobile, AL

As important as sanitation is, it’s equally important to have a vehicle in safe working order. The expert technicians at our Volvo service center in Mobile, AL, can do their part to keep you safe in your car by providing a variety of preventive maintenance services. Check out our service specials today, and stay safe — and sanitized — out on the road this summer.