Most Americans spend at the very least an hour in their car every day. In fact, according to the latest Daily Ride Index, the average American spent 12% more time in their car per week, from 9 hours and 43 minutes per week, to 10 hours and 50 minutes per week) from October 2018 to March 2019.
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From commutes to household errands, to kids carpools, and annual road trips; there are a ton of reasons to drive. For some, being behind the wheel is almost an all-day affair such as rideshare drivers like Uber drivers, food delivery drivers, truck drivers, law enforcement and first responders.
SEE ALSO: WE SPENT A TAD OVER 9 DAYS COMMUTING TO WORK IN 2018
During the pandemic, many people used their cars in non-traditional ways; for getting some alone time, for making business phone calls, and turning it into a makeshift office
From new car smell to trapped odors
That new car smell is a well-known odor, so much so that there are even car air fresheners in that very smell. As drivers nationwide spend more time driving, cars are becoming more like an extension of its users or family. Along with the day-to-day mess a vehicle can accumulate, think snack wrappers, gym shoes and the like, it can also contain and bottle up a variety of odors.
Men drive about eight more miles per day than women
From trash to school uniforms to old take-out boxes, pet odors, even mildew smells from rainstorms or carsick moments odors, there’s plenty of aromas trapped in your car. And the longer you own the vehicle, the more odors can be trapped in upholstery, carpets, and other areas.
Baking soda wonders
Baking soda is used to clean a variety of items from freshening up dish sponges to mattresses. The non-toxic staple is great for removing oil stains, absorbing odors, polishing silverware, even disinfecting cutting boards. But did you know you can use baking soda for getting rid of bad smells in your vehicle?
You can even make your own car air freshener by mixing baking soda with water and a bit of essential oil and place in a spray bottle
For your vehicle’s seats and carpets, just sprinkle some baking soda and let it sit for a few hours. Then vacuum the areas to clean up what’s left, and you’re done. If your upholstery is extra dirty, use a damp brush to clean the fabric even more.
For your rims and wheels, create a paste-like substance by mixing three cups of baking soda and one cup of water. Apply mixture on the rims and wheels, let sit for a few minutes and get to scrubbing. For eve more cleaning power and cleaning rust off, throw in white vinegar, apple cider or even lemon to the baking soda-water mixture.
You can place a small cup of vinegar inside your car overnight, the evaporation process will greatly limit strong odors
Dryer sheets for pet hairs and more
Leave dryer sheets in a few areas in your vehicle for a fresh scent. Such as under your car seats or in the trunk. You can also use these deodorizing sheets to remove pet hair, just run them along specific areas where the hair accumulated. The friction will remove the mess. You can also use dryer sheets for cleaning headlights. Just dampen a dryer sheet with water and rub to remove unwanted gunk, debris, and dirt.
Car enthusiasts like to place Bounce sheets under the hood and on tires to keep mice and other rodents at bay during the winter months
Charcoal briquettes and air purifying bags
Charcoal can be used to absorb odors and toxins in gases, such as air, so it works well to deodorize vehicles. You can place a few briquettes around your car to get rid of lingering smells. You can also buy charcoal air purifying bags for a more powerful absorption. Charcoal woks in the same natural way that baking soda does, but is more powerful because it’s more porous and can trap odors more easily as it absorbs them.
What car smell are you trying to get rid of?