Getting stains out of cloth car seats doesn’t have to send you out running to the nearest auto detail place. You can pull them out yourself if you follow seven easy steps.

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Take some knowledge under your belt and you’ll be ready to bring the life back into those car seats. Say goodbye to ancient milk stains and who-knows-what your kids ground into the seat fabric.

Maybe ignorance is bliss on that one.

Knowing how to get stains out of cloth car seats is simple — we broke it down into seven easy steps.

How to get stains out of cloth car seats in 7 easy steps

Are you ready to clean up your cloth car seats? Let’s get started.

1 – Remove car seats from the vehicle

To begin, let’s discuss the first step on how to get stains out of cloth car seats.

Remove all loose items from the car and off the seats. Take out children’s booster seats and safety seats. Next, if possible, remove the seats from your vehicle. This will enable you to work around them for a more thorough cleaning effort. You don’t want any crumbs or spills hiding from your reach. If the seats aren’t removable you can still proceed with the following steps.

2 – Vacuum the car seats

Before you do anything else, let’s get those car seats vacuumed. Take a brush to the chair while you’re at it in an effort to break down any debris that’s sticking to the fabric.

Change the end of the vacuum hose for the appropriate end-piece for vacuuming.

3 – Mix a stain removal solution

If you’re not a do-it-yourself sort of person, then you may wish to bypass this step and take a quick jaunt to your local home department store. You’re bound to find a decent stain removing solution in the cleaning aisle.

Plastic bottle with soap suds

The Inspired Housewife found a favorite car upholstery stain remover recipe in the following ingredients: 1 cup dish soap, 1 cup white vinegar, and 1 cup club soda.

Pour the ingredients into a plastic heavy-duty spray bottle and shake it up to mix well.

4 – Apply the cleaning solution

Now it’s time to put your cleaning solution to use. Whether it’s store-bought or do-it-yourself, it’s time let it works its magic.

For your store-bought solution, follow the application directions on the bottle.

For the recipe we shared from The Inspired Housewife, spritz the solution all over the car seats. Don’t be shy about getting the solution on there. It’s time to say goodbye to those unattractive stains.

5 – Let it sit for about ten minutes

After you’ve sprayed on the stain removal solution, let it sit for about ten to fifteen minutes. This will allow the solution to work through the particles that make up the stain. You want the solution to break it down for easy removal. If you fail to let it sit, you’re missing a key step in how to get stains out of cloth car seats.

6 – Rinse with a clean, damp rag

Now that you’ve allowed the solution to sit a while, it’s time to “rinse” the cleaning solution off. You can do this by taking a damp rag with fresh water and wiping away at the car seats.

7 – Air dry the car seats

Finally, you need to allow the car seats to air dry. We hope you chose a warm, sunny day for this. If you couldn’t remove the seats from the car, leave your car doors open. If it’s winter, park your car in the garage then open it up to let it dry. You may wish to bring those seats indoors and set a fan in front of them. You could also set them down a safe distance away from the fireplace. 

Clean the car carpet

You may also wish to thoroughly clean the car carpet while you’re at it. Now that your car seats are out of the way, this is a good time to do that.

Use the same cleaning solution and get to work, following the steps above. Feel free to incorporate a steam cleaner if desired for an added boost of sanitization.

Steam vacuum in car

Photo credit: Autowise

Other applications

Don’t wait until guests are going to ride in your car. Don’t wait till it’s time to put the car on the market. Give your family a car interior that is beautiful and comfortable for the everyday family activities that await.

You owe it to the longevity of your car’s interior fabric too! The longer you let dirt sit, the more it wears away at your vehicle’s fabric. Don’t let your car age prematurely. The wear and tear of debris is something that’s evadable in any car.

Now that we discussed how to get stains out of cloth car sets, you may find that do-it-yourself cloth car seat solution helpful in removing messy stains incurred on kitchen carpet.

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