How to Clean Car Mats: The Secrets of Easy Cleaning

Clean car mats have no effect on the serviceability of the car and safety on the road. But the fact that it is much more pleasant to drive in a clean interior is a fact. It is not necessary to go to a car wash. It is enough to clean the interior, throw out all unnecessary things, wipe off dust, and clean mats. We will tell you how to clean the car mats without spending a lot of time and effort.

Car mats come in many forms: rubber, textile, tufted (made of carpeting), and EVA mats. Let’s figure out how best to clean each of them, and what products to use for this.

How to wash rubber mats in the car and how to dry them

Rubber mats are much easier to wash than other materials: dirt is not absorbed into the rubber but remains on the surface. Another thing is that you will have to wash such a mat often because dirt on it becomes immediately visible.

Take the rubber mat out of the cabin and shake off the debris from the surface. Apply a brush or sponge cleaner with soapy water, and then rinse with plenty of water. You can also do without the cleaner – just wash the mat under water. But the water should by no means be hot: the rubber may deform due to the high temperature.

Hang the mats vertically and let the water drain off. Or dry them with a microfiber – it absorbs moisture well.

Tip: In winter, rubber mats should not be washed in the cold – the material becomes brittle, and the mat may crack.

How to wash tufted mats in the car – 3 ways

With tufted mats (made of carpeting) will have to tinker with them longer than with rubber mats, but cleaning them is not so difficult. There are a few ways:

  • Dry cleaning with an auto chemical

First, vacuum the mats of dust and debris. Then pour a special cleaning powder on the surface and spread it evenly with a brush. Leave it for at least 3 hours and then vacuum up the dirty powder.

  • Wet cleaning

Be warned right away: if you have a long pile, this kind of cleaning is not an option – the mat will lose color and you may damage the antibacterial protective film on it.

If the pile is short, you can use any carpet cleaner, detergent, and soap. Dilute the cleaner in warm water and lather it up. Apply to the rug and scrub well. Remove the dirty foam from the rug with a clean brush.

If you have a wet vacuum cleaner, that’s a beauty altogether. There is nothing easier than cleaning a carpeted rug with such a vacuum cleaner. Use a special shampoo for carpet cleaning.

  • Cleaning with folk remedies

It happens that there is no vacuum cleaner – not that a detergent, but even the usual, or auto-chemistry, and the carpets are begging: “Wash us.” Let’s go to plan B and see what we have at hand. You may not be able to do a general cleaning, but stains can be removed.

  • Citric acid – removes wine or juice stains. Soak the stain with a cloth and sprinkle it with the acid. Allow to stand for 20 minutes and then wipe with a damp cloth.
  • Mineral water – removes coffee and other beverage stains. Pour a little water on the stain and then blot it with a cloth. If the stain is stale, you can first soak it in mineral water and then apply a window cleaner. Leave it for a few minutes and then wipe it with a damp cloth.
  • Soda is also a good stain remover. Sprinkle the stain with baking soda, rubbing it in, and after 20 minutes, remove the baking soda with a napkin.
  • The flour will get rid of greasy stains. You need to pour the flour on the stain and the grease will be absorbed into it. Then remove the flour. If the grease is stale, first apply a mixture of water and salt to the stain – it will dissolve the grease, and then sprinkle with flour.
  • Vinegar is a good stain remover. Dilute it with water at a ratio of 1:5, and wipe the carpet with a moistened cloth. Then wipe again with a cloth and water.
  • Ice – this will help remove the gum. Freeze it with an ice cube and the gum will come off the surface.

Tip: If pile mats can be removed before cleaning, it is better to do exactly that – take them off, wash them (just not in the washing machine), and dry them. If you want to clean the carpet without taking it off, then do not overdo it with water. Do not allow water to seep through the carpet to the bottom, as this can cause rotting of the bottom or corrosion.

How to clean textile car mats – dry and wet cleaning

Textile mats can also be cleaned in two ways:

  • Dry vacuuming.

Go over the textile mat with a regular vacuum cleaner – it will remove the dirt and lift the lint. But it’s not a good idea to knock the mats out of the textile: you could damage the material.

  • Wet cleaning

Textile mats can also be cleaned with plain water or with any cleaner, laundry detergent, or soap.

Dilute the cleaner in warm water, apply it to the rug, and scrub well. After rinsing with water or removing the dirty foam from the rug with a clean brush.

Tip: If you clean with a head of water, make sure that it is not too strong because you might damage the fibers of the fabric.

Remember that textiles should not be twisted. After you have cleaned the rug, hang it to dry in an upright position.

  • Cleaning EVA Car Mats

EVA mats are car mats with cells that collect all the debris and dirt. On the one hand, they are more difficult to clean, but on the other hand, such mats are much more practical than the others, because they do not let dust or water through.

The first tip when cleaning an EVA mat: pull it out of the cabin as carefully as possible, so as not to turn it upside down. Pulled it out? Perfect – now give it a good shake.

Then everything is according to the known scenario: apply detergent, scrub, and rinse with water with a sponge or microfiber. It is very convenient to clean such mats under a strong jet of water – it washes everything and everything out of them.

EVA mats can not dry, and immediately put back in the cabin, but make sure that the bottom of the mat is dry.

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Written by Emma Miller

I am a registered dietitian nutritionist and own a private nutrition practice, where I provide one-on-one nutritional counseling to patients. I specialize in chronic disease prevention/ management, vegan/ vegetarian nutrition, pre-natal/ postpartum nutrition, wellness coaching, medical nutrition therapy, and weight management.

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