5 Top Handy Tips About How To Disinfect Your Car – From Our Hygiene Experts

Apr 2020

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Citton Cars has always strived to ensure our vehicles are clean and disinfected. But with the recent outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19), we’re well aware of how important it is to disinfect your car now.

As a way of helping out, we wanted to share with you a few tips we’ve imparted with our staff, and lessons you could learn from our employees.

Our Staff Have Been Trained

As the WHO and CDC have instructed everyone to do: wash your hands.

This means, our staff are required to wash their hands every 20 minutes.

In addition, hand-sanitiser has been provided to our staff to ensure that COVID-19 is not spread. Also, they’ve all been trained to practise best respiratory hygiene habits.

Example: coughing into elbows, and disposing of tissues straight after use. 

Firstly, there will be no hand-shaking on our showroom floor. Additionally, staff members, on the floor, valet areas, and workshop, will be adopting the elbow bump.

We’d like our customers to follow their lead and practise social distancing. If you’re not sure what distance you should keep, it is 1 metre.

Secondly, if our staff have been to a high-risk area in the last 14-days, or are showing any of the symptoms of COVID-19, they will be sent home (or are at home, currently).

Once again, we encourage our customers to do the same.

For elderly clients too scared to come into the store, we can make a plan with your test drives.

Furthermore, if you are self-isolating we’d like to assure of one thing. You won’t be missing out on any deals. Citton Cars will always have new exciting vehicles for you to test drive, even after this crisis has passed.

What To Use To Disinfect The Exterior?

There’s been a lot of panic buying in South Africa. Which means a lot of the disinfectants have been snatched up. But, don’t worry, the supply chain is still running.

You should be able to pick up the supplies you need sooner, rather than later.

It should go without saying, people touch your car when you’re not around. And according to the CDC, COVID-19 can survive on plastic or stainless steel surfaces for 2-3 days.

If you park your car outside, this timeframe might be shorter as UV light kills viruses. That being said, it can still be still on the surface of your car for a number of hours.

Before spraying the vehicle down, make sure to use good old soap and water. In times like these, you might want to use gloves, which need to disposed of immediately afterwards.

If you’re using a cloth or a sponge, make sure to dispose of or wash them thoroughly, afterwards. 

Once the surface is clean, it is time to use a disinfectant.

You can mix your own sanitiser with hydrogen peroxide and isopropyl alcohol or ethanol. We’d suggest putting it into a garden sprayer. If you’re based in Cape Town, your drought “eco-shower” will do.

But like your hands, you need to ensure that the bottle itself is disinfected regularly. We’re well aware that disinfectants can be expensive.

Thankfully, the CDC has also said that household bleach diluted will work as a disinfectant spray.

A simple recipe is to use 80ml of household bleach for every 4 litres of water.

However, this recipe for sanitiser and any disinfectants will remove wax and polish from your paintwork.

Let’s wait to apply those products again after COVID-19 has passed.

What To Use To Disinfect The Interior

Before going any further, we’d highly recommend asking passengers a few questions before they climb into your car.

Have they travelled in the last 14-days, and are they displaying any symptoms of COVID-19? Then before they climb into the car, they should disinfect or wash their hands.

After all, you’ve just disinfected your car.

As mentioned before, clean all surfaces with soap and water first. This refers to the carpeted floors and seats. We’d also recommend wiping down leather seats.

Once again use gloves and dispose of them afterwards. If you use a wet cloth, dispose of it after use, or put it through a hot wash.

Then, utilise a disinfectant with at least 60% alcohol in it. With our interior cleans, we often use alcohol wipes.

In the same fashion, make sure to dispose of them in a bin after use. We’d recommend having a pack of wipes in the car all the time.

If you must travel with a person you suspect may be infected, insist that they wear a facemask.

Now, let’s focus on key contact areas to keep clean.

Disinfect Key Touch Areas

Our staff members have been instructed to wipe down key touchpoint areas on all our vehicles, and we suggest you do the same.

These areas include:

– Car door handles;
– Indicator stalks;
– Steering wheels, actually we’re now providing plastic covers that we change after each test drive;
– Gear levers;
– Hand brakes;
– Seat belts;
– Petrol caps (for fuel attendants);
– Stereos;
– Navigation centres;
– Dashboards;
– And the rearview mirror.

Every time someone new walks in, or past, they could be a potential carrier of COVID-19. 

On the showroom floor, we also have taken on the policy of sanitising pens, phones, and cups etc. While not in the vehicle, we think this is a tip you should take home with you.

In Conclusion  

Currently, we are all living through some tough times.

But if we work together, wash our hands, practise proper respiratory hygiene (cough into your elbow), and self-isolate as much as possible, we should help stunt the spread of this virus. 

Be safe out there, and if you want us to organise a test drive after the lockdown, feel free to contact us.