How to Get Rid of Salt Stains in Your Car

It's tough to keep your car looking clean this time of year, especially where carpeting and floor mats are concerned. These tips can help.

If you live where winter is a five-month-long ice and snow storm, you shouldn’t wait until spring to give your cabin a well-deserved deep cleaning. While cleaning out the interior, you may notice unsightly road salt stains. Here’s how to make quick work of this cleaning task. (Don’t miss the 20+ things you should do to get your car ready for winter.)

How to remove salt stains from your car using vinegar:

Step 1: Gather your supplies

  • 1 spray bottle
  • 1 bottle of household distilled white vinegar
  • Hot water
  • Scrub brush with hard bristles
  • Dry cleaning cloth
  • Wet/dry vac

Step 2: Make the solution

  1. In the spray bottle, make a cleaning solution consisting of 50 per cent vinegar and 50 per cent hot water. (Don’t miss these other brilliant uses for vinegar all around the house!)
  2. Spray the solution onto the affected areas (carpet and floor mats will likely have the most salt stains).
  3. Let the solution sit for a few seconds, then scrub vigorously with the scrub brush.
  4. Soak up the remaining mixture with a dry cleaning cloth.
  5. Use a wet/dry vac to suck up any remaining solution and salt residue.
  6. Hang floor mats to dry. If parked inside, you can keep the windows rolled down to air out the vinegar smell.

How to remove salt stains from your car using foaming carpet cleaner:

Step 1: Gather your supplies

  • Foaming carpet cleaner
  • Scrub brush
  • Wet/dry vacuum

Step 2: Apply foaming carpet cleaner

  1. Spray the foaming carpet cleaner generously on the salt stains.
  2. Use the scrub brush to gently work the salt up to the surface.
  3. Allow the cleaner to dry.
  4. Vacuum up the dried residue.

Next, find out how often you should wash your car in the winter.

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Originally Published on The Family Handyman