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DIY tips to clean tough car stains this Holi

March 19, 2019, 08:24 PM IST by Nikhil Puthran


Holi is one of the majorly celebrated festivals of our country. However, this festival of colours might not be your car’s favourite occasion. And rightly so, with all the colours and water balloons, your car most often bears the brunt, especially if it is white in colour. While it is best to avoid taking out the vehicle, most of us would prefer visiting family or friends in our own vehicles to avoid inconveniences. Now, the commonly used synthetic colours during Holi are usually a blend of various chemicals like mineral oils, heavy metals and surprisingly, glass powder! Clearly, as compared to the natural colours, the synthetic colours are difficult to get rid of, especially from the upholstery. Read below to know some DIY tips on how to clean your car this Holi.


- Avoid using detergent powder or soaps to clean your vehicle as they do more harm than good. A good car washing soap, shampoo or foam should help. Use a microfibre cloth to wipe it dry and give it a fresh coat of wax to bring back the lost shine. Applying a coat of car wax a day before the festival will further ease the cleaning process. 

- The headlights use a tempered form of polycarbonate plastic that is inherently porous. To compensate for its porous nature, the headlamps are covered by a protective film. However, due to extended exposure to sunlight and UV rays, the films begin to degrade and the plastic becomes oxidized. After you wash the car, use a micro fibre cloth to rub a combination of vinegar and baking soda on to the headlights. The naturally abrasive quality of baking soda can work to release grime and dirt, and bring a polished finish to the headlights. 

- Avoid acid based solutions while cleaning the wheels. Wheel cleaning detergent, vinegar and hot water in a cleaning bucket should do the work better. 


- Moving to the interior; well, this is where the tough part begins. Most believe that using more water and soap is an easy way to clean the seat. However, this is not true and using more water will only dampen the seat, stain them further and leave a foul smell. The trick here is to use a little hot water with baking soda and rub it in a circular motion. Use a little vinegar with warm water and a few drops of dishwashing soap to scrub the stain from the seat. Use a towel with cold water to rinse off the detergent. Leave the windows open to let fresh air pass and dry the seats. 

- As for the leather seats, you can clean it by dabbing a cotton ball dipped in alcohol-based cleaners or a nail polish remover. Rub the seat with vinegar or lemon juice and let it sit for about 30 minutes before rubbing it with a damp sponge. Use a clean dry towel to wipe the seat dry of any liquid remnant. 

It is also worth noting that the above-mentioned tricks will be effective only on seats that are mildly stained whereas, the heavily stained seats will need a replacement or intensive treatment at authorized workshops. Also, the above-mentioned tips will only clean and not restore the upholstery to its original form.


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