21 smart tips on how to clean & organise your car


You leave pair of shoes in the passenger foot well. An empty packet of sweets has been laying on the back seat for months. Before you know it, your car has become a disgusting rubbish tip and you can’t even remember the last time you washed the exterior.

It’s time for a change. Let Expert Home Tips guide you on how to clean and organise your car. Don’t forget to share it with your pals, we’re trying to spread the word of our blog – thanks!

1. Shoe organisers are not just for shoes

Neat & organised, perfect.
Neat & organised, perfect.

The mighty shoe organiser can be a parent’s best friend. They can be casually slung over the front passenger seat headrest, containing everything you need for a long journey. Baby wipes, toys, snacks, nappies can all be neatly packed and easily accessible. You can also hang one in your boot, slung over the back seat headrest packed full with car cleaning products, first aid kit, snacks that have a long shelf life and tissues.

2. Toothpaste your headlights

Grab an old brush too!
Grab an old brush too!

It’s extremely important to keep your headlights clean, for obvious reasons. Did you know that you can clean them with toothpaste? You really can! Check out this amazing YouTube video on Headlight Restoration by ChrisFix. I honestly can’t wait to try it out for myself.

3. Put plastic bags in old tissue boxes

Brilliant use for an old box.
Great use for an old box.

Used tissue boxes are an inexpensive storage for useful plastic bags. Stuff a load of old bags into an old tissue box and keep it in your car. Use it for rubbish, wet clothes after swimming and muddy shoes. What a brilliant tip!

4. Use Cola on your windshield

No ice please.
No ice please.

Have you got lots of dead flies and grime on your windshield? Place a large towel underneath to protect the good paint, grab a bottle of coke and pour it all over the glass. Wash with a rag and then rinse with a wet cloth.

5. Organise your glove-box

Bonus points for colour coordination.
Bonus points for colour coordination.

You know what they say – tidy glove-box, tidy mind. Well they don’t really, but keeping it organised can’t be a bad thing! Put all the important documents in a folder so you have easy access to them. If you’ve got lots of wires you occasionally use, wind them up neatly and store them in an old cardboard toilet roll.

6. Prevent car battery corrosion with Vaseline

Grab your pot!
Grab your pot!

Is there anything Vaseline can’t do? This time your trusty pot of petroleum jelly can help save you money in repairs and battery replacement. Find out more at eHow.com. For more uses, please see 31 astonishing things to do with Vaseline Petroleum Jelly. It’s eye-opening.

7. WD-40 for bird poop removal

I see you...
I see you…

Parked under a tree? You can remove bird poop with WD-40 spray. Spray it on, let it sit for a bit and rinse with water. This will also work on pesky tree sap.

8. Keep a pack of baby wipes in the car

You little beauties.
You little beauties.

Baby wipes are brilliant for all kinds of things, even your car. You can clean your dashboard, (do a spot test first), plastic fittings and grubby hands, so make sure you keep a pack in your glove-box. To discover more wondrous ways to use them, visit Anushka’s 39 unexpected uses for baby wipes.

9. Clean with a pair of old tights

Look out for holes.
Look out for holes.

If you’re worried about damaging your car’s exterior when washing it, use an old pair of tights as a cleaning rag. It will be super soft and you won’t get any scratches! This is such a useful way to re-use all those tights with holes in them.

10. Work from top to bottom

Be smart.
Be smart.

This may be a no-brainer, but make sure you clean the upper surfaces of the interior of your car, finishing with shampooing the carpet. Catch all the dust from nooks and crannies with a waiting vacuum cleaner hose. Which leads us on to my next tip…

11. Use brushes to clean air vents

Any old inexpensive brush will do.
Any old inexpensive brush will do.

Grab an old paint brush or make-up brush, spray it with a little furniture polish and use it to get rid of dust in air vent crevices. This is a great, inexpensive way to clean them thoroughly.

12. Remove frost from car windows

Be gone!
Be gone!

You’ve woken up, you’re in a rush and what’s that? Frost all over the windows! Have no fear, rubbing alcohol is here. Keep a little spray bottle in your car to gelp get rid of frost on cold winter mornings. To find out more, visit Anushka’s 23 practical uses for rubbing alcohol.

13. Prevent a smeared windsheild

Just the vinegar please.
Just the vinegar please.

This is a clever tip for you. Wipe your windsheild wipers with cloth soaked in malt vinegar, and you’ll never suffer from a smeared window again! For more tales of amazement, check out 21 surprising uses for vinegar.

14. Keep a cheap phone in your glove-box


You’ve probably got an old phone lying around your home that has a battery life of about 10 days and looks like a brick. Store it in your car glove-box for emergencies. You never know when your phone might run out of battery and you’ll need to use it.

15. Clean the top of the windows

Don't forget!
Don’t forget!

Sometimes people can forget to clean the top of the car windows, resulting in a thick film of dirt. Make sure you’re not one of those people and give it a good wipe-down when you’re washing your windows.

16. Coconut oil for leather

Crazy [tip] as a coconut.
Crazy [tip] as a coconut.

Wipe your leather clean with a damp cloth, dry it and then apply small amounts of coconut oil. Buff gently with a clean dry cloth for a good moisture injection. Visit 21 clever uses for coconut oil that may surprise you for other excellent tips.

17. Coloured nail polish for touch-ups

Quick, to the shop!
Quick, to the shop.

If you’ve discovered a small area of your car where the paint has come off, head to the nail polish aisle to discover the right shade for an easy touch-up. Do this to minor problems and you’ll never notice the difference!

18. Declutter daily

If you do it once a day, at the weekend you can play!
If you do it once a day, at the weekend you can play!

If you use your car regularly for various short journeys, then you probably end up with a messy car by the end of the week. Every time you leave your car in the evening, give it a quick once-over. Remove any rubbish and wipe down the surfaces. This will help you in the long run. If you want to learn more, check out Anushka’s Declutter Your Home: 7 stress-free ways to do it now.

19. Vaseline tiny scratches

Trusty ol' petroleum jelly.
Trusty ol’ petroleum jelly.

For tiny scratches on the dashboard and plastic trim, grab your pot of Vaseline and gently apply to the area. This will help to remove them and for larger scratches buff gently. Be careful though, you don’t want to damage these surfaces.

20. Stick car mats & wheel hubs in the dishwasher

Sparkles, courtesy of your dishwasher.
Sparkles, courtesy of your dishwasher.

Hub caps and car mats will quite happily be cleaned in the dishwasher. This will save you lots of time and they’ll get a great soak. Who knew? find our more in Anushka’s 21 things you didn’t know you could clean in the dishwasher.

21. Day trip bag

Importantly, have FUN.
Importantly, have FUN.

Aid spontaneity by packing a bag full of all the items you might need for a day trip. Be prepared for anything and include a towel, blanket and anything you need for a fun day out. Don’t forget to include snacks that don’t go off. Your organisation will be rewarded with a lovely long-lasting memory with your fellow passengers – big or small!

I hope you’ve enjoyed all the tips on how to clean & organise your car. If you’ve got tips you want to share, please do so by commenting below.


Lifelong biscuit addict. Obsessed with recipes, cooking & eating. Slightly lazier than the average bear, so likes writing about life hacks & discovering the quickest / easiest way to do things.

  1. 1 simon john Reply

    do not keep any documents for your car in the vehicle,because if its stolen the thief will laugh his head off
    all the way to sell it…

    1. 2 Colleen B Reply

      Hi Simon – you can keep all the car manuals in there which could help you, but yes I agree – nothing that will help a thief to sell it!

  2. 3 Ivy Baker Reply

    My car battery has a bit of corrosion on it. So, I loved that you talked about how petroleum can help remove that. I wonder what else that can help with on my car.

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