10 Things You Need to Keep Your Car Clean

You spend a lot of time in your car—the daily commute, the regular errands, road trips, and running to and fro. So, it makes sense that the car interior and exterior can quickly amass grit, grime, smudges, and other unclean additions. You don't need to bring your auto to the car wash to get a deep clean. Do the job yourself, quickly and affordably, with the help of these handy tools.

  1. Banish Bad Smells

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    Banish Bad Smells

    Traditional air purifiers, the kinds designed to hang from your rear view and clip onto the passenger side air vent, can add a pleasant scent but they can't remove bad odors from the air, they simply mask them. The PURGGO air freshener is different. The activated charcoal construction traps bad smells—including tough scents like smoke—leaving your car interior feeling fresher and cleaner. Available on Amazon; $39.99.

    Related: 15 Genius Tricks for Keeping Your Car Clean

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  2. Scrub Softly

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    Scrub Softly

    What is it about microfiber cloths that make them so good at cleaning your car? Microfiber cloths are so soft that they don't scratch your car's finish and they don't leave lint behind on the body, windows, or lights. These microfiber cloth mitts improve upon the utility of microfiber cloths by amping up the convenience factor. Don a pair of the mittens, then buff and polish to your heart's content, all while minimizing hand strain caused by gripping an ordinary cloth. Available on Amazon ; $15.99.

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  3. Reach Every Spot

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    Reach Every Spot

    As all car owners can attest, washing every inch of the windshield is nearly impossible. Thankfully, the Invisible Glass Reach & Clean Tool simplifies the task with its long-reach handle and pivoting head. Use it to achieve a streak-free finish on windshields, as well as corners, gaps, and other hard-to-reach places on your vehicle. Buyers will also get two reusable and washable microfiber bonnets. Available on Amazon; $13.47.

    Related: The 10 Best Accessories You Can Buy for Your Car

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  4. Degrease Your Wheels

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    Degrease Your Wheels

    Engines, tires, floor mats, upholstery, stainless steel accents—all parts of your vehicle take a beating from extended use. To banish grease and grime, car owners can rely on the powerful SuperClean cleaner-degreaser. The biodegradable and phosphate-free formula removes the toughest grease at full-strength, but it can also be diluted for gentler tasks. One squirt and your wax, dirt, oil, and tar mishaps will disappear! Available on Amazon; $5.47.

    Related: 7 Ways You're Ruining Your Car

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  5. Portable Suction

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    Portable Suction

    Save yourself from lugging the house vacuum outside to clean your car interior and opt for this lightweight wet/dry vac instead. The 2.5 gallon vacuum comes with five unique attachments to get into every nook and cranny of the car, whether it’s under seats or between the vents. Available on Amazon; $44.99.

    Related: 8 Surprising Things You Never Knew You Can Vacuum

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  6. Shine Without the Long Line

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    Shine Without the Long Line

    There’s really no such thing as a quick and easy car wash. Doing it yourself turns into a long, sudsy mess and going out for it is another expense and typically met with long lines. Of course, that is until now. The car care company Optimum has created a no-rinse product that cleans and protects your car without the hassle of pulling out the hose and needing buckets and buckets of water to get rid of soap suds. Mix 1 oz. of the No Rinse Wash & Shine with two gallons of water and use a microfiber cloth to clean your car. Dry the car off with a different clean microfiber towel and you’re all done! Even better, the product is environmentally safe, so whatever water is left in the bucket can be used to water your lawn or go down the drain without any issues. Available on Amazon; $20.25.

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  7. Unstick Stickiness

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    Unstick Stickiness

    For bumper stickers and decals, bird droppings and brake dust—for almost anything that sticks to your car and won't let go—there's Goo Gone Automative. Since the early 1980s, when the Magic American company first released its original cleaner, there's been no better product for removing stubborn, gummy residues. Today, Goo Gone comes in a range of permutations. There's Goo Gone for ovens; Goo Gone for tile; Goo Gone for... well, you get the picture. Conveniently, for cars, the solution comes in a spray gel formulation that clings closely to the surface where you apply it, making pretty painless work of getting rid of almost any gooey mess—without making a whole new mess in the process. Available on Amazon; $11.90.

    Related: 12 Things Never to Leave in a Hot Car

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  8. Repel Rain

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    Repel Rain

    Spray it on, then wipe it off—that's all it takes for Rain-X to make your car practically invulnerable to water marks, bug splats, and road spray. Think of it as an insurance policy against poor visibility. You can't prevent precipitation, or the path of insects, or the behavior of your fellow drivers on the road—but you can take an effective step toward ensuring your own safety. What if the damage has been done already? What if your windshield's already pocked to the point of obscuring your view? Don't worry! Rain-X 2-in-1 Glass Cleaner with Rain Repellent cleans up after the fact just as well as it protects you beforehand. Available on Amazon; $21.95.

    Related: 10 Things You Never Thought to Keep in Your Car

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  9. Good for On-the-Go

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    Good for On-the-Go

    Tub O' Towels is an easy one to toss in the glove box or trunk—and here's why you'll want it handy at all times. Their large 10-inch by 12-inch size allows you to get all the mess and cover any surface in the car with ease. And we mean any surface: Soaked in a solution that's free from harsh chemicals, the heavy-duty wipes can remedy stains on vinyl, metal, and carpet found in or out of the car. Plus, the durable weave of the sheets means you can scrub off even the toughest messes—oil, grease, and even tar—without being so abrasive that you leave behind a scratch. Available on Amazon; 90 wipes for $11.94.

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  10. Spinning Your Wheels

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    Spinning Your Wheels

    Even if you don't regularly off-road, chances are that you've simply got stuck in a rainy (and therefore muddy) day and seen your tires look worse for it. You don't need to muster up any extra elbow grease to deal with caked on mud, though. Add a Brush Hero Pro to your at-home car wash kit to handle your scrubbing needs. It attaches to a standard garden hose to spin, scrub, and deliver a supply of water directly to tough-to-clean parts of the car like your car's rims, wheel spokes, and grill. Switch between from the white brush to the black brush head (included) when going from a tough job on the tires to shining the chrome details, but never worry about switching out batteries—it gets powered by your garden hose's water output! Available on Amazon; $39.99.

    Related: 13 Hacks Every Car Owner Should Know

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  11. Squeaky Clean

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    Squeaky Clean

    A clean car is a happy car.

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  12. See the House of the Week

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    Discover and admire beautiful and innovative home architecture, from grand Victorians to quaint cabins and all the styles in between. Take a look at the latest images and inspiration!