Sunscreen might be excellent for your skin, but it is not something you would want to have on your vehicle’s vinyl. The liquid can badly damage your car’s appearance and create stains that might be challenging to remove at times.
Moreover, some of the sunscreens are water-resistant and waterproof, and therefore, it is not that easy to wipe them away from the interior of the cars.
The best method to remove sunscreen from your car’s interior is to apply a small amount of alcohol or white vinegar.
Scrub the liquid by applying it on a non-abrasive sponge and keep it for some time before wiping it away with a fresh towel. This is a reliable process, but several other methods are also used for removing sunscreen from inside the car’s interiors.
This article describes the different procedures that are assured of removing sunscreen stains from the interior of your car without causing any additional damage to the car’s upholstery or carpet.
How to clean sunscreen off the car interior?
There are two fundamental and significant reasons which might create stains in the car’s interiors. The first cause is that the sunscreen is an oily material that becomes very difficult to remove or break down.
Secondly, most sunscreens contain a chemical named avobenzone, and it can absorb vast amounts of ultraviolet radiation. Since the chemical reacts with iron in hard water, it can create an iron-colored or dark orangish stain inside your car.
Being a car owner, knowing this is essential because you need to follow what not to perform while removing sunscreen from your car’s interior. Never use water to remove them because they will quickly absorb the oil in the sunscreen and leave behind marks and stains.
You can use different methods apart from using water to remove the stain caused due to sunscreen. The most practical and efficient processes are listed below:
- Rubbing alcohol or white vinegar.
- Baking soda.
The removal method might vary due to the product you choose, but the essential thing is to apply them over the stain and rub them for some time. Finally, wash them or scrub them away with a towel.
Utilizing these materials for removing sunscreen stains from your car’s interior is a relatively easy method. But there are several things that you must keep in mind before pouring baking soda or alcohol into the leather seats.
Moreover, if your car’s interior is darker, it will be more challenging to remove the stains. Also, if the sunscreen is consequential and has higher oil content, you might have to repeat these methods several times before getting it off from the car’s interior.
Rubbing alcohol or white vinegar
Rubbing alcohol or white vinegar are both very efficient cleaning agents that effectively remove oil-based disintegrating materials like sunscreen stains. It is also a low-cost method for cleaning your car’s interior because white vinegar and rubbing alcohol are available in most houses as household items.
To remove the stains using these items, you will have to apply or pour small amounts of the agent into the sunscreen stain. The upcoming step for cleaning the stain will depend on the material used in your car’s interior.
If your car’s interior is composed of leather, you will need a non-abrasive sponge to apply the alcohol or white vinegar to the seat.
Moreover, you will also need a microfiber towel to wipe the material. Since leather is made of natural substances, harsh chemicals like white vinegar or alcohol might damage the product.
Although, most leather covers used in the car’s interiors have added covers to enhance longevity.
However, once you see that almost all sunscreen is removed from the car cover, you can pour some warm water over the place and let it dry to ensure that there is no mark of the alcohol or vinegar left behind.
Non Leather interior
If your car’s interior is composed of some other materials like polyester, then you need to let the vinegar or rubbing alcohol soak for about three to five minutes.
Like in the leather interior, you will need to follow similar steps like scrubbing and spraying. Instead of cleaning the alcohol or white vinegar right away, you will have to leave them for some time and let the sunscreen oil break down.
Sometimes, a scrub pad is more effective than a scrub on the polyester interior. Therefore, you can choose any among these materials. Once these processes are followed, you can wipe away the material, spray the portion with white water, and dry it.
Using a degreaser
The best material for removing a sunscreen stain from a car interior is to use a degreaser. However, since the material is not available in everyday products, using a degreaser is a bit expensive compared to the above methods.
There are numerous car stain degreasers available in the market that you can use, and the price of these materials generally ranges between five to twenty dollars.
Cleaning the stain off the interior using a degreaser will follow the same procedures as white vinegar and rubbing alcohol. You need to apply the product over the stained spot, let it settle for some time, or remove it instantly ( depending on the material ).
Lastly, wipe away the degreaser and determine whether you need to follow the same process again or whether you need to wash the portion with warm water.
Cornstarch or Baking Soda
Baking soda is a standard household product that is available very quickly. Usually, this method is applicable for fresh stains on trickier substances like the car carpet.
If the stain is new, try to rub or blot up the stain using a towel or sandpaper and immediately put the cornstarch or baking soda in that area.
Use a brush to scrub the cleaning material deep into the fabric, and then allow it to settle for at least fifteen minutes. These absorbent materials will quickly absorb the remaining sunscreen from the car interior.
After fifteen minutes, remove the absorbent material from over the surface and see if the interior has vanished or not. If you see that the sunscreen is still present, repeat the same procedure.
On the other hand, if the sunscreen stain is not fresh and was present previously, you should apply it over the stain by mixing it with white vinegar. It will form a thick, paste-like product that you can apply over the fabric. Allow the material to settle for three to five minutes before wiping it away to clear the stain.
Removing stains from the car’s interior is versatile and can be applied to any portion inside the vehicle. However, some stains might not be clear with this method.
You can move on to other parts where there is a sunscreen stain. Firstly wipe the leftover residue with a tissue or a wipe. Try to blot out the region if wiping does not work correctly.
Once you have removed the leftover residue, start preparing the soapy water mixture that you will use to remove the stain. Research about the soap you use because all soaps might not be suitable for all types of car leathers.
Use a washcloth or a sponge to gently scrub the material into the sunscreen stain and continue performing it unless the stain is lifted. Never apply the material harshly because it might damage your car interior instead of removing the stain.
Finally, wipe off the soapy water mixture using a tissue or a dry cloth to see the concluding results. If you see that the stain remains after the first move, you can repeat removing the sunscreen stain.
It is pretty annoying to see many sunscreen spots appearing on the interior of your car. While getting rid of these marks can be tricky, there are simple and easy ways by which you can remove them quite easily. You can use alcohol, soapy water mixture, white vinegar, baking soda, or rubbing alcohol.
If you have a tough stain to remove off the car’s interior, it is better to keep a degreaser.
Keep in mind the material of your car interior before applying the cleaning material. Moreover, stay away from water until you are sure that the sunscreen stain is entirely removed.