How to keep your car germ free

Could coronavirus be living in your car?

Now that lockdown restrictions have eased and many of us will be using our cars more to go to work, travel for exercise or visit another household, we provide some advice on how to keep your car safe from germs.

Why is it important to keep my car clean?

As a compact space, cars are one of the dirtiest, most microbe-infected environments in our lives.

COVID-19 can persist on hard surfaces and remain infectious at room temperature for up to 72 hours, so, regular cleaning will reduce the risk of passing the infection onto other people.

Where in my car are germs most likely to hide?

According to research by CarRentals, the average steering wheel is six times dirtier than the average mobile phone screen and twice as dirty as the buttons in a lift.

Other areas with high levels of bacteria include your car’s gearstick, keys, cupholder, seatbelt, handbrake and door handles – all of which have been found to have more grime than a public toilet seat.

Disinfecting surfaces and washing hands between journeys is vital in preventing the spread of the disease.

Ben Tomasetti, our Chief Commercial Officer, said: “I urge motorists to keep a pack of disinfectant wipes and antibacterial gel in the car, so you can clean your hands and any surfaces you might have touched. As well as washing your hands thoroughly as soon as your journey has finished.”

I’ve tested positive. How do I go about cleaning my car to stop it spreading onto others?

If you’ve tested positive for the Coronavirus, you should self-isolate in line with Government advice. If you need to use your vehicle, or if you share your car with other people in your household, you should thoroughly clean and disinfect all surfaces and door handles to minimise the risk of spreading the disease. Until we’re told otherwise, cars should not be used for lift sharing.

Alternatively, you could ask a professional, mobile, car cleaning company, such as Dropless, to deep clean your car without the need to leave your home.

What’s the best way to keep my car clean?

Wear disposable gloves and aprons when cleaning. These should be double bagged, then stored securely for 72 hours before being thrown away in the regular rubbish after cleaning is finished.

Prepare everything you need before starting to reduce contact with any other surfaces (such as the garage door).

  • Vacuum floor and seats
  • Mop the mats
  • Disinfect surfaces with sanitiser wipes
  • Change your pollen and air filters
  • Disinfect the gearstick, steering wheel, buttons and door handles between drives
  • Use a disposable cloth to disinfect cleaning items and wash your hands thoroughly after removing gloves, aprons and other protection used

Do I need to clean a hired or courtesy car?

1ST CENTRAL supplies cars through our network hire and courtesy car services. Each vehicle will be deep cleaned before you take it out, however, you should still take precautions to keep the car clean between drives.

Will my car be deep-cleaned if it’s being repaired at a garage after an accident?

If your vehicle is being fixed by 1ST CENTRAL’s approved network of repairers, they’ll ensure it’s given a deep clean before it’s returned to you.

Do you wash your hands after filling the tank? Motoring experts warn that fuel pumps could be a hotbed for diseases.

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