We touch a lot of their surfaces, eat while using them, track dirt and mud inside them, and carry passengers and pets along for the ride. When you add it all up, it’s easy to see why our vehicles are such a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. In fact, researchers have found that more than 350 germs per square centimeter can live in our car — on the gear shifting knob alone.

And while it’s impossible to rid your car of every last one, there are a few things you can do to sanitize your car and create a healthier ride for all aboard. 

Tips For Sanitizing Your Car 

Follow the car sanitation tips below and leave the germs in your tracks. 

Wipe down hard surfaces

Germs and even viruses can thrive on stainless steel, plastic and glass, or in other words, the very surfaces that make up many parts of your car. Keep some disinfectant wipes in your car, and give the following surfaces a thorough wipe down on a regular basis:

  • Door handles
  • Steering wheel
  • Shifting knob
  • Seatbelts and fasteners
  • Radio, GPS, and other infotainment controls
  • Heating and air conditioning controls and vents
  • Rearview mirror 
  • Turn signal and wiper blade knobs
  • Window controls
  • Armrests and consoles 
  • Parking brake 

Use hand sanitizer

The best way to keep your car sanitized is to first keep your hands sanitized. Keep a bottle of hand sanitizer in your car, and make it the first thing you touch upon entering or exiting your vehicle.

Vacuum and shampoo upholstery 

Dirt and food particles have a way of collecting in the crevices of the upholstery that make up a vehicle’s seats and floors. And because the inside of a car is often hot and poorly ventilated, it can create the perfect environment for bacteria to grow.  

Get into the routine of regularly vacuuming out your car, and become diligent about immediately disposing of any trash and clutter. You can also use some shampoo to give your upholstery a deep cleaning and further rid it of germs and bacteria. 

Change your cabin air filter 

There are two air filters in your car. One is located under the hood and filters air that enters the engine. The other is located inside your cabin and filters the air that you and your passengers breathe. 

Have a service professional check your cabin air filter a couple times per year, and have it replaced when it begins to look dirty.     

Clean your keys

Your keys are an extension of your car and carry just as much potential for germs. Keys come into regular contact with furniture, cell phones, and even the ground. And the area where your keys spend a lot of time — your pockets — are even dirtier than a toilet seat. Use some dish detergent and warm water to give your keys a gentle scrub every now and then. 

Sanitize, Then Service in Raleigh, NC

Sanitizing your vehicle is highly important, but don’t forget to have it serviced. While a clean car keeps you healthy, a properly serviced one keeps you safe. Visit the Kia Service Center at Fred Anderson Kia of Raleigh for oil changes, brake service, tire rotations, and more. But first, check out our service specials, including a complimentary car wash, and drive away in a safe and sanitized vehicle.