Man Washing His Car

Car Sanitization Information
For Germain Lexus of Easton Customer Support

At Germain Lexus of Easton, we fully understand the concerns our customers have about exposure to COVID-19, or coronavirus. The Columbus community is already taking precautions to reduce the risk of germ exposure outside their homes, such as wearing facemasks and gloves, frequently using hand sanitizer and sanitizing items they purchase while running errands. It's important to note, however, that once you purchase items and load them into your vehicle, they are then touching your vehicle's interior. According to the World Health Organization, studies suggest that the coronavirus may live on surfaces for a few hours or up to several days. That means that you should be sanitizing the interior of your car to kill any germs it may have collected on your last visit to the grocery store or pharmacy. 

Car cleaner wiping car door with rag

How Long Does Coronavirus Survive on Surfaces?

Your Lexus contains a variety of surfaces within its interior, from leather seats to plastic on the dash. Therefore, you'll need to utilize different cleaning tools for washing your Lexus interior. According to the National Institutes of Health, the virus that causes COVID-19 is stable for up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to two to three days on plastic or stainless steel. Another study suggests that similar viruses can live on "inanimate surfaces like metal, glass or plastic for up to nine days."

Cleaning the interior of the car with a microfiber cloth

What's the Best Way to Sanitize My Car's Interior?

Always be sure to wash your hands before you begin sanitizing your vehicle, and wear disposable gloves if you have them. Most common EPA-registered household disinfectants will work well for sanitizing your vehicle. Just be sure to read the product's label to make sure it's safe for the surface you're planning to use it on. For added protection, keep a small bottle of hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes in your car so you can wipe down the vehicle and clean your hands frequently.

Worker washing of interior leather seats

How to Clean Leather Seats in My Car

It's important to ensure that your available leather cleaner is appropriate for your vehicle, so be sure to spot test it on a hidden area to verify that it won't leave any blemishes or discolorations. While cleaning, it is best to use a microfiber cloth to avoid scratching the leather. Don't have any leather cleaner on hand? Simply mix two parts vinegar with one part water and you can make your own solution. If possible, apply a leather conditioner after cleaning, too.

How to Disinfect Surfaces in My Car

The most important areas of your Lexus to keep clean are the dashboard and the steering wheel. Bacteria tends to collect in these spots, as air is cycled throughout the vehicle. To clean your dash, simply use soap and water. Dish soap also works by simply dampening the surface and scrubbing for 20-30 seconds. It's also a good practice to regularly wipe down your dash and steering wheel with a disinfecting product frequently. In addition, focus on high-touch places within your Lexus vehicle, which can include:

  • Door Handles
  • Door Buttons
  • Key Fob
  • Steering Wheel
  • Inside Door Buttons
  • Seat Belts
  • Gear Shifters
  • Touchscreens
  • Buttons on the Dash
  • Buttons for Lights
  • Buttons for Windshield Wipers
  • Glove Compartment

Are There Disinfectants I Should Avoid Using in My Car?

If you want to avoid damaging your Lexus vehicle's interior surfaces, don't use bleach or hydrogen peroxide to disinfect. These can damage the vinyl and plastics in your cabin. You should also avoid any ammonia-based cleaning products used to clean glass, as they can break down the vinyl on the dashboard. Heat and light may then cause your dashboard to become sticky.

Do I Need to Disinfect My Car's Exterior?

Due to exterior elements like the weather and sunshine, germs are less likely to live on the outside of your vehicle. However, it's still smart to disinfect areas you touch frequently. This includes door handles, handle buttons, the gas cap and other high-touch areas on your vehicle's exterior.

Here at Germain Lexus of Easton, we want to do our part to help educate our customers and keep them safe and healthy during this difficult time. If you have any questions about car care or need assistance, please don't hesitate to reach out to our Lexus dealership in Columbus, OH.

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