How to Clean the Leather Interior of a Car

How to Clean the Leather Interior of a Car

Real leather needs special care. When the interior of a car is made out of leather, it can get dirty – just like any car interior. The key to keeping your leather interior looking amazing is proper cleaning.

Steps for Cleaning Your Leather Interior

Before you begin cleaning your leather interior, inspect the interior for any perforated areas or small holes. Make sure to not get any water, cleanser, or conditioner stick into the holes. It’s also important to check your owner’s manual to see if it specifies any products that you can or cannot use on your interior. Once you’ve finished your inspection, you can start the cleaning.

  • Vacuum the seats carefully to remove any large dirt or other trash.
  • Spray a microfiber cloth with leather cleaner, saddle soap, or any mild leather soap, and wipe the seats to remove surface layer dirt and grime. 
    • Combine 1 part white vinegar and 2 parts linseed oil to make your own leather cleaner.
  • Use a brush tool to deep clean the leather. For this step, you spray the cleaner directly onto the seats and scrub the seats with the brush.
    • If you have perforated leather seats, spray the brush and not the seats directly.
  • Use a clean microfiber cloth to wipe the seats and remove any leftover cleaner, dirt, and grime left from the brush cleaning.
  • Place a leather conditioner onto a microfiber cloth or sponge, making sure to massage all of the conditioner into the leather.
  • Let the conditioner soak into the leather for a few hours.
  • Buff the seats with a clean microfiber cloth for a shiny finish.
  • Use a microfiber cloth sprayed with a leather cleaner to clean all other leather surfaces in your car.

See how to clean leather interior here: 

Tips for Cleaning Your Leather Interior

There are some specific things to keep in mind when you are cleaning your interior, and there are also some DIY tips that you can use!

  • Make sure to spot test anything you use on your interior before using it on large areas.
  • Choose a good leather conditioner. Cheaper conditioners can leave a greasy feel. Look for a high-quality conditioner that does not have petroleum distillates, silicone, or waxes.
  • Some DIY solutions to removing stains on leather interior are:
    • Scrub the stain with a non-gel toothpaste on a toothbrush, wipe the area clean, and dry with a towel.
    • Dip a cotton swab into rubbing alcohol and rub it into the stain. Once the stain is lifted, use mild soap and water to clean the area.
    • Sprinkle baking soda on oil or grease stains and let sit overnight. Wipe the powder off the next day with a cloth, and then wipe the area with a damp cloth to remove any residue. Dry with a towel.

Enjoying the Fruits of Your Labor

Leather interior may need a bit more TLC than other interiors, but these tips will help your leather interior stay looking great for a long time. Don’t forget the leather conditioner!