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How to Wash Car Seats: The Best Cleaning Methods

How to Wash Car Seats: The Best Cleaning Methods

How to Wash Car Seats

A lot of people really need to learn a thing or two on how to wash car seats. From a certain standpoint, one might think that cleaning car seats is as easy as taking out the vacuum cleaner. In reality, though, it is actually more than that, especially when you have to deal with stubborn stains and even other messy build ups.

So, how should you go about it? Do not fret as we will give you some tips and tricks on how to deal with certain messes in your car seats. But then again, do remember that the things that we are going to share with you require a lot of time and effort on your part. These are not quick fixes.

At the same time, why do a quick clean when you have already removed your car seats? Better make the effort all worth it by really going in there and even disinfecting them. In the long run, you might just thank us for it because you will be driving in a pristine car.

The Importance of Deep Cleaning the Car Seats

It is extremely important to clean the car seats because they are the haven of dirt, grime, and even bacteria in your car. Just imagine the countless things that you put on them without even cleaning their surfaces. Other than that, this is the place where you are in constant contact with, so you really have to make sure that it is clean so as not to transfer any messes to your clothes or body.

Moreover, your car seats can also be the perfect place for bugs to live in. Imagine roaches crawling on top of you while you are driving. Yikes! All in all, you should be concerned with the grossness of it all. In fact, just keep in mind that bacteria and fungi can grow there, and eventually, those can get you sick.

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How to Wash Car Seats: The Three Major Techniques

There are various methods as well as cleaning agents for you to tackle your car seats. But here are the most effective ones that do not only remove the toughest stains but disinfect your seats as well.

Use of Fabric Cleaners

This cleaning solution is best used when, from judging the appearance, your seats do not look like they have too much food stains on them, or when they are only dusty and worn down a bit.

Materials Needed:

  • Vacuum
  • Fabric cleaner
  • Brush
  • Microfiber towel


  • Vacuum the seats while using a small nozzle to get rid of any debris.
  • Vacuum it slowly while following a certain way to make sure that the dust underneath can be sucked in.
  • Use a fabric cleaner and spray it all over the seat.
  • Do not saturate the seat too much as this will lead to developing mildew.
  • Before the cleaner dries, use a brush to work it in the seat.
  • To really dry out the fabric cleaner, use a microfiber towel and rigorously wipe the surface.
  • Vacuum the entire seat again.

Using Other Household Items

This cleaning solution can be done if the seats already smell different and there are visible stains on them.

Materials Needed:

  • Vinegar
  • Dish soap
  • Warm Water
  • Baking Soda
  • Spray Bottle
  • Brush
  • Vacuum
  • Microfiber towel


From the materials above, you can create two cleaning solutions. Do take note, though, that you cannot use both of these solutions in one car seat as doing so can destroy the car seat.

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Vinegar Solution:

Mix one part vinegar, one part dish soap, and three parts of warm water. Put the mixture in a spray bottle.

Baking Soda Solution:

Mix 1/4 cup of baking soda with one cup of warm water. Put the mixture in a spray bottle.


  • Vacuum the seats while using a small nozzle to get rid of any debris.
  • Vacuum it slowly while following a certain way to make sure that the dust underneath can be sucked in.
  • Choose a homemade cleaning solution and spray it all over the seats.
  • Rub it in using a brush.
  • Spray it again with warm water.
  • Brush it again.
  • Dry the surface down using a microfiber cloth.
  • Vacuum the seats again.

Wet Technique

This is the case where you really have to deep clean the seats for you to get a proper clean. Not a lot of people do this because you risk trapping moisture inside the car seat when they are not properly dried. So, you have to beware of that too.

Materials Needed:

  • Vacuum
  • Laundry Detergent
  • Brush
  • Water
  • Fabric conditioner
  • Microfiber cloth


  • Take out the car seats from your car. Be mindful of where the screws go in, so you will not be confused when you put them back.
  • Vacuum the car seats. Take your time to get the dust off of them.
  • Drench the seats with water. Make sure that they are entirely wet.
  • Apply laundry detergent and scrub it in using a brush.
  • Form a bubbly lather.
  • Rinse the seat with water and scrub it again with the detergent.
  • Give it a final rinse and make sure that the water runs clear.
  • Spray a bit of fabric conditioner on top of it.
  • Try to dry the seats as much as you can using a microfiber cloth.
  • Give it one last vacuum.
  • Let it out to dry in the open air.
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The Proper Care for Car Seats

Now you can see how much of a hassle it is to clean the seats on your own. Therefore, here are some things to remember, so that you will not stain them as much.

  • Try to not eat too much inside your car—no eating means no crumbs.
  • Do a bit of dusting after every car use. Using a brush is enough, so there will be no build up.
  • If there is a stain, deal with it right after you go home. This way, it will be easier to remove its remnants on your next deep clean.
  • If any liquid comes into contact on your seat, blot it immediately with a napkin or cloth. This is a safeguard against moisture buildup.

Final Words

You are now equipped with the recipes to the cleaning agents and the tried-and-tested tips on how to wash car seats. Do remember that you do not have to use the wet technique too often as this is only used in extreme cases. Choose the cleaning solution that you can manage and stick with it.