How Can You Clean Your Car Air Vents Effectively?
Although it should be cleaned every week and detailed monthly, there's more to cleaning your interior than just wiping off the dashboard and vacuuming the carpet. Car air vents need to be maintained regularly, too, to avoid dust buildup and musty odors.
Why does my car smell bad?
Air vents will circulate odors if they haven't been properly dusted and cleaned. Odors can come from outside, inside the cabin, or even within the air condition unit itself. These odors can be caused by bacteria that have built up from condensation. They also can arise when it's time to change the cabin filter.
Which tools work best?
Cleaning your car air vents effectively is as easy as using the right tool. A small, soft and flexible brush will easily dust out your vents the next time you detail your interior. Make sure your brush will pick up dirt and not scratch delicate or plastic surfaces. Turn the air on, and let the vents blow out as you dust, so that you don't push dust and dirt back behind them. If you wish to dampen your brush with a safe cleaner, make sure it is ammonia and silicone free.
What about tough odors?
For tough odor problems, Lysol is a useful disinfectant that can be sprayed into the intake vent or grill. Let the air condition run after using an anti-bacterial spray to work its way through the system and take care of the lingering problem. There are also professional odor treatment products at auto parts dealers and online. They work much like a can of Lysol to kill odors caused by bacteria.
Although a small brush will agitate the dust and any grime enough to remove most of it, tight cracks that a small brush won't detail may require a Q-tip or toothpick for removing any minute remaining buildup. For easier cleaning, some detailers are able to pop out the air vents in select car models and wash them by hand in hot soapy, water. Check your manufacturer's guide before attempting to remove a vent, as it may cause damage.
Check out some of these interior cleaning products and make sure you use this tip for more effective cleaning; Run the air and clean out your vents before vacuuming the rest of the car. Dusting out your vents makes a mess on upholstery and carpet, and will make more work if you save it for last.
Photo Credit: HighTechDad via Flickr