Tips and Tricks
Spring is a time for wonderful fresh smells, budding trees, flowers blooming, snow melting and deep cleaning. There is nothing better than being able to crack open the windows to let the cool spring smells replenish the stale winter air. Many people are inspired to do their spring cleaning with this season change, however we often neglect our vehicle as part of the spring cleaning process. The winter season can wreak havoc on our vehicles with all the snow, sand, salt and mud that gets tracked in and out.
General consensus shows that most people do not want to stand outside in the freezing winter months to vacuum out their vehicle. Car washes are always busiest on that first warm day of the season. You wait though, because there is nothing better than seeing your car free of the wintery mix of sand, salt and snow. Not everyone has access to commercial grade cleaning tools like we do here at Morrie’s, so we asked around for some tips and tricks people have learned over time on how to make cleaning your vehicle easy and convenient using everyday household items. Remember cleaning your vehicle may seem like a never ending chore, but it will help to protect the finish, prevent rust, and add to the resale value. A clean car is a happy car.
1. Using a toothpick and or cotton swab can help to remove dirt and grime from cup holders and around counsel shifters.
2. A cotton swab also works well to clean out heat vents.
3. Some people have air compressors at home. These can come in handy when cleaning your vehicle. You can use it to loosen up sand embedded deep down in the carpet for easy vacuuming. If you don’t have one, just use your hand in a flat motion to tap the carpet. You will see the sand popping up. Sprinkle some baby power on the carpet before vacuuming for a fresh smell.
4. Vinegar can be used to clean windows and chrome. Mix equal parts of white vinegar and water in to a spray bottle. Don’t forget the old trick using newspapers to wipe windows for that streak free shine. Vinegar can also be used for cleaning dashboards and steering columns.
5. Baking Soda can be used for cleaning tires. Add water to the baking soda to form a paste. Wet the tire and use a hard bristle brush to clean the tire with the baking soda. Let sit for a few minutes and rinse clean.
6. Use a brown paper bag or plastic sack from the grocery store to put excess garbage in. You can also use a few extra to put loose clothing in and one for things you need to take back in the house like, extra pens, travel mugs, change, ice scrapers, mail, sunglasses, etc.
7. To clean interior upholstery, pour a cup of baking soda into a bowl, and stir in white vinegar until a smooth paste is formed. Apply to the upholstery or carpet stain, and scrub in with a soft bristled brush. Let the paste dry, then vacuum to collect any baking soda residue. For tough and built-in stains, repeat this process as necessary.
8. For the exterior of your vehicle, add 10 drops of dishwashing liquid into a bucket, and then add warm water to form suds. The dishwashing liquid serves as a de-greasing agent to break up dirt and debris without leaving a greasy film behind.
We hope these tips come in handy when you decide to deep clean your vehicle this spring. And remember, you can also stop by any Morrie’s location for a car wash!
Weather patterns change quickly here in the midwest and so do road conditions. In the blink of an eye you could be stranded in your vehicle so we did some research of our own to help you be more prepared. We talked to employees in different departments at our Chippewa Valley Mazda dealership and they provided some helpful tips to ensure safe winter driving.
Our staff recommends that you keep these items in your car at all times in case of emergency: A blanket, water, a knife or scissors, glow sticks, road flares, a flashlight, hand and feet warmers, a first aid kit, matches, a candle, booster cables, hat and gloves, an extra set of warm clothes, an ice scraper, and a bag of road salt, sand, or kitty litter.
With icy conditions, our Service Manager suggests using kitty litter or road salt if you get stuck. Put the litter under your tires to help gain added traction. Our Sales Manager suggests digging snow away from your exhaust pipe if you become stuck in deep snow. This prevents the exhaust from seeping back into your vehicle and becoming a hazard. Some other suggestions from staff members included staying in your vehicle until emergency personnel arrive, always carrying a cell phone with a car charger, and packing a snack that won’t spoil or freeze. Maneuvering the roads in Wisconsin/Minnesota during winter months can be dangerous, but being prepared with some of the simple tips above can help if you find yourself stranded.