Tips for Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Car to Avoid Spreading Coronavirus
With the COVID-19 virus outbreak, you should thoroughly clean and disinfect everything you touch and use, including your car. In this article, we’ll give you some precious tips about taking care of your vehicle to avoid spreading the novel coronavirus.
But first, let’s talk about the COVID-19 virus, how it’s spreading and how long it lasts on objects and surfaces.
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses named for their shape that looks like a crown or a corona. SARS and MERS are part of the coronavirus family as well as viruses that cause the common cold. Previously known as the "2019 novel coronavirus" (2019-nCoV), the official name given by WHO for the virus that’s responsible for the current outbreak is the "severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2" (SARS-CoV-2). This virus causes a disease called COVID-19, which is the reason why most refer to it as "the COVID-19 virus." It can cause flu-like symptoms that range from mild to severe, including fever, cough, and shortness of breath.
The COVID-19 virus can be easily spread from person to person. When someone infected sneezes, coughs or even talks, they may spread droplets containing the virus a short distance, which quickly settles on surrounding objects and surfaces, including cars. Anyone who touches those objects and surfaces and then touches their mouth, nose, and eyes can get infected.
“Current evidence suggests that novel coronavirus may remain viable for hours to days on surfaces made from a variety of materials.” - CDC states.
How to keep your car clean?
Luckily, you’ll find on store shelves products that you can use to kill viruses and bacteria in your car. Chances are you probably already have these cleaners at home. The key is choosing the right products and using them correctly. You should carefully read the car manufacturer’s instructions regarding cleaning and disinfecting your vehicle.
Before you go shopping for cleaning products and disinfectants, make sure you also grab a box of disposable gloves - wear a pair of these while cleaning and discard immediately after you’re done!
Once you have your gloves, you can go ahead and search for the products that will get your car rid of the COVID-19 virus among other viruses and bacteria. When shopping, carefully read the instructions of each product - the last thing you want is to damage your car’s interior.
According to the CDC, solutions that have at least 70% alcohol are effective against the COVID-19 virus. Nearly every surface in the inside of a car can be cleaned with products containing isopropyl alcohol. Avoid products that contain bleach or hydrogen peroxide, as these substances will damage the interior of your vehicle. Ammonia-based cleaners should be avoided as well because they can damage the anti-fingerprint and anti-glare coatings.
Microfiber cloths are great for cleaning and disinfecting your car; they won’t scratch your vehicle and are easy to find and use.
So let’s recap. You’ll need:
- disposable gloves;
- alcohol-based cleaning solutions;
- a microfiber cloth.
Surfaces you need to frequently clean:
- steering wheel;
- door handles;
- grab handles;
- shift levers;
- passenger and driver door armrests;
- wiper and turn signal stalks;
- touch screens;
- seat adjusters.
- Put a pair of disposable gloves on.
- Apply cleaner on a microfiber cloth and gently rub the inside of your car, focusing on the surfaces mentioned above.
- Once you’re done, take the disposable gloves off and throw them away.
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
Ultimately, we encourage you to be alert, not anxious and take all the preventive measures recommended by the authorities. Take care!