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Buying Guide: Best Car Care Carpet and Upholstery Products (2024)

Caring for the interior of your car should be paid just as much attention as caring for the exterior of your car but is often neglected because of the work it takes to do. If the interior of the car is maintained though, spot cleaning the carpets and upholstery in the vehicle should be only have to be done once a month with a deep cleaning performed every 6 months to keep the appearance looking new.

There are many products out from which to choose to clean the various areas within the vehicle and there are many who have different ideas of what it takes to clean and detail the inside of the vehicle. An easy place to begin when choosing a cleaning products to use in the car is to look at the type of surfaces and materials that are within your interior.  Materials generally used in the interior are carpet, velour, vinyl, rubber, and plastic. Once the material is determined, the rest is just knowing which product to purchase.

Caring for the Carpet

  • Scrub Brush
    To clean stains out of carpet and upholstery, a good quality scrub brush is needed.  Choosing a brush that can easily be held on too and gripped is ideal. We recommend this Chemical Guys car interior brush.
  • Turtle Wax Power Out Upholstery Cleaner Odor Eliminator
    A foaming cleaner, you scrub this into the stained areas on the upholstery and scrub in with the designed brush lid. This product is has an odor eliminator to help deodorize as it cleans. Read more about it on Amazon.
  • Turtle Wax Power Out Carpet Cleaner Odor Eliminator
    This product as a removable brush cap that allows for cleaning in tight spots.  It is designed to clean carpet that has had heavy use. Read more about it on Amazon.
  • Tuff Stuff Foam Cleaner
    Receiving 5-star ratings for its cleaning excellence, Tuff Stuff Foam cleaner is designed to remove the even the toughest set in stains.This product comes in both a foam cleaner as well as an aerosol that you can spray and use with a scrub brush. Read more about it on Amazon.

Fabric and Upholstery Protector

Once you have performed a deep clean on the interior and you have cleaned all the carpets and upholstery in your vehicle, you want to protect the hard work you have put into it or maintain the cleanliness that already exists.  Using a protector will help do just that.

  • Scotchgard Auto Fabric and Carpet Proctector
    This product protects both the fabric and carpet in your vehicle’s interior by allowing liquid to bead up on the surface which allows you more time to clean up spills before it absorbs into the seat or carpet.Simply spray the protector over all carpets and fabric after your car is clean.  Read more about it on Amazon.

Cleaning Leather and Vinyl Upholstery

When the upholstery in the car is made of leather, a special cleaner made specifically for leather needs to be used.  Cleaners work differently depending on whether you have an inexpensive leather material as compared to a softer, richer leather.

  • Lexon Leather Care Kit with Sponge
    This kit includes four 16.9 ounce bottles of non-darkening leather care formula, leather conditioner, leather cleaner and Vinylex protectant along with the applicator sponge.  Read more about it on Amazon.
  • Meguiar’s Gold Class Leather and Vinyl Cleaner
    This product both cleans and conditions at the same time. This products is a spray and wipe cleaner.  Read more about it on Amazon.
  • Meguiar’s Gold Class Leather Conditioning
    After using the leather and vinyl cleaner, spraying the conditioning on the seats allows for the leather to stay conditioned and prevents cracking as can be found in older leather seats that are not taken care of.  Read more about it on Amazon.

All Purpose Cleaners

Some want to only buy one cleaner to perform the duties for all surfaces and the following products claim to be safe and work on most all interior surfaces including carpet, fabric, vinyl and leather.

  • Meguiar’s D101 Detailer All Purpose Cleaner
    Meguiar’s Detailer All Purpose cleaner receives high ratings it’s excellence in cleaning all interior surfaces of your car.This product comes in smaller, ready-to-use bottles as well as gallon concentrated economical size.  Read more about it on Amazon.
  • Griot’s Garage Interior Cleaner
    Griot’s Garage Interior cleaner uses no dyes or chemicals and is another product that receives high ratings from us for its performance in getting set-in stains out and its performance in cleaning all surfaces.  Read more about it on Amazon.

Car Wipes

  • Armor All Carpet and Upholstery Wipes
    After spending time cleaning and maintaining your car, an easy way to keep it that way is to be able to clean up spills immediately so stains do not set in permanently.Carpet and Upholstery wipes by Armor All provides an easy way to do this by providing 12 pre-moistened wipes in a plastic canister that can be easily stored in your car and allows you to have something to clean up a spill and stain while out and about.  Read more about it on Amazon.
  • Meguiar’s Gold Class Rich Leather Wipes
    Providing 25 pre-moistened wipes per canister, Meguiar’s Rich Leather Wipes cleans, moisturizes and protects spills as they happen.   Read more about it on Amazon.

Maintenance is key in keeping the interior of the car clean and with the right tools, products and a bit of elbow grease, maintaining the clean appearance will become an easy task.