Perspective

Spring clean your car with these detailing hacks

Sunday, April 1, 2018by  PEMCO Insurance

gloved hand with scrub brush on car seat.If you've kept a convertible or classic car under wraps all winter, now's the time to shake off that coating of dust and enjoy the beauty of the Northwest. Check out these do-at-home tips to help it (or any car) look like it just came from a detail shop.

  • Make wheels sparkle. Cleaners like Bar Keeper's Friend and Bon Ami remove grime on alloy wheels, like those made of aluminum or magnesium, without the risk of scratching you'd get with steel wool or even Comet.
  • De-fog your headlights. If your car's headlights have grown yellow and hazy with age, they can reduce visibility by up to 80%! Before you spring for a headlight restoration kit, try buffing your headlights with ordinary white toothpaste (Colgate is good). The mild abrasive can temporarily cut through the fog without scratching and give you clearer headlights.
  • De-gunk crevices. Frequently pushed buttons like your cruise control can accumulate a layer of grime. A toothbrush or Q-Tip help you really get in there!
  • Remove old bumper stickers with WD-40 spray. You'll revive the look of your car, and you could make your next drive safer. A PEMCO Poll revealed that, for about one in five drivers, their opinion of your bumper sticker affects how they behave toward you in traffic!
  • Find the mystery stink. If your car smells musty, you might have dirty vent or heater filters. Didn't know your car even has those? Many people don't! Check your owner's manual and change them.
  • Fizz away upholstery stains. You probably saw your mom dive for the club soda when you spilled grape juice on the carpet as a kid. Try it yourself for coffee, soda, ketchup or whatever feast found its way onto your seats.
  • Scrape up pet hair with a squeegee. Mist a little water on your seats and squeegee the hair away. No squeegee? Do this: With a damp open hand or while wearing a rubber glove, rub the seat in a circular motion. Pretty soon, you'll start seeing "curls" of pet hair collecting together, which you can pick up. The damp or gloved hand trick also works on the living room sofa when you don't want to drag out the vacuum.

Have a cleaning hack you'd like to share? Let us know, and we'll consider it for a future issue!

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