Rubber mats can be the dirtiest part of your car. They absorb dirt and grime from your shoes. When kids (or grownups, too) drop milk, chocolate, chips, or any other food stuff, gravity will pull them towards the waiting arms of your mats!
And when you step on dog’s poo, or any other animal’s, then that yucky stuff will be there in your mats. If you don’t clean it up right away, you probably deserve to have the worst smell in your car!
You can get a new rubber car mat by buying on an auto parts store or via Amazon for about $20. But if you want to save some bucks, you should consider washing and reusing them. Unlike a carpet mat, rubber is durable and can last longer. Here’s how to clean rubber car mats in a few, easy steps.
Take your rubber mats out of the car. Shake ’em and clap ’em together like a bird’s wings to loosen small food items that must have been stuck. Pebbles, dust, and dirt could also come off just by your shaking.
Rinse the rubber mat with water. Use a high-pressure hose to remove stubborn dirt that have clung to the mat since the last time you cleaned it up (or maybe since you bought it and put it in your car!) If you’re at a DIY car wash, consider washing the rubber mats alongside your car with the high pressure hose and brush.
Use your preferred cleaning solution. If you have several bucks to spare, consider getting this Complete Car Care Kit from Meguiar’s. Make sure that the solution you choose is mild enough for rubber.
Get a tire brush or anything with long and stiff bristles. Spray your rubber mat with the cleaning solution and scrub the dirt out of the mat until you’ve covered every nook and cranny of the ridges of your mat. You may need to do it for a few minutes just to get at all the dirt.
Blast the rubber mat once more with the high pressure hose to remove the dirt and the cleaning solution. Please, DON’T DRY YOUR MATS IN THE SUN unless you want your mats to fade and crack, and well, make their way to the dumpster more quickly.
Instead, dry it with a microfiber towel. If it’s a breezy day, you can also dry them in the shade. Do not put them back into the car until they are completely dry. Otherwise, you’re just inviting molds and rust in the floor of your car.
This is simply the best way to clean rubber car mats! It’s simple, effective, and will not cost you an arm and a leg.
Don’t use rubber or vinyl protectant or anything that contains silicone for repelling water. They tend to make the rubber slippery. When you’re driving, you don’t want your foot slipping under the wheel. It’s just unsafe.
Remember to clean your rubber mats and your car floor regularly. No matter the season, it’s always a good idea to keep the interior of your car clean and smelling good!