Most drivers know the importance of washing their cars; it’s how you prevent salt and grime from eating away at your vehicle, after all. Unfortunately, regular visits to the car wash can be time-consuming—and awfully expensive.

This is especially true if you prefer to clean your car with natural ingredients. How are you supposed to keep your ride looking as good as new without exposing yourself or your vehicle to harmful chemicals and without breaking the bank on pricey all-natural products?

Luckily, there are plenty of ways to keep your car clean in ways that are both safe and simple. Each one is an absolute life-saver!

1. If you need to clean up the stains in your car’s carpeting, you can create a paste with equal parts baking soda and white vinegar. Then, directly apply it to the affected areas and use a toothbrush to scrub it into the material. Use a vacuum to clean it up after it’s completely dry.

2. You can use a small foam paintbrush to dust around the air vents in your vehicle. As you go, follow up all the areas that you wipe down with a small vacuum to suck up the excess dust. It’s always best to be thorough!

stephencdickson / Wikimedia Commons

3. Instead of using the harmful chemicals found in various wipes and sprays to polish and condition your leather car seats, you can use a few drops of olive oil! Simply place some drops onto a clean cloth and rub it in.

4. Any ordinary vacuum cleaner should be able to pull up pet hair from your car seats, but if you want an even better method, trying using a squeegee and a spray bottle full of water. Just lightly spritz some water onto the seats and use the squeegee to wipe them down.

5. Regular air fresheners can contain toxic ingredients. Try this homemade solution instead: mix five drops of one of your favorite essential oils, like peppermint or lavender, with three-quarters of a cup of baking soda in a small mason jar. Poke some holes in the top of the jar, drop it into a cup holder, and your car will smell great in no time!

6. Do you have grimy streaks on your windshield from your windshield wipers? In order to make your windshield look as good as new, just wipe it down with ordinary household rubbing alcohol. This will also help prevent more streaking in the future!

7. Similarly, if you have streaks on any of your windows, pour vinegar into a spray bottle and let it settle for a moment. After some time has passed, spray the windows thoroughly and wipe them down with newspapers. (Newspapers help prevent streaks.)

Mike Mozart / Flickr

8. To give your chrome wheels a shine that will make them look brand-new, create a mixture of equal parts water and vinegar, and pour it all into a spray bottle. Spray the chrome and then wipe the liquid down with a rag. Voila!

9. To keep your tires clean, make a paste out of equal parts water and baking soda and use a brush to rub it all over the rubber. After you rinse it all off with water, your wheels will look like you just bought them from the shop!

10. As for giving your car a thorough, good-old-fashioned wash, you don’t need harmful chemicals. Instead, you can mix a bucket of water with just a few drops of all-natural liquid Castile soap, which uses organic plant oils as a base. Cover the outside of your car with the concoction, and after a good wash and rinse you’ll be good to go!

fireballsedai / Flickr

It’s amazing how much mileage (pun definitely intended) you can get from simple ingredients like water and vinegar. With all of these hacks, there’s no reason that you shouldn’t be able to keep your car looking perfect!

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