How To Clean Inside of Car Dashboard

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Basically, you just need to damp a rag and use it to wipe down your car dashboard – that’s how to clean it right? Well, if this is how you clean your car interior or your car dashboard, in particular, you really need to stop and follow this professional guide on how to clean inside of car dashboard.

A car’s dashboard is the next most important part of a car after the engine bay. The dashboard is usually where to access virtually all the features and techs available in a vehicle. As with every other part of a car, the dashboard can be very dirty and need to be washed.

Why Does Inside Of My Car Dashboard Always Look Dirty?

You should know that dirt and dust can find their way into every nook and cranny of a car because cars are not airtight. Moreover, you will frequently open the doors or roll down the windows to do one thing or another; during those times when the doors or windows are open, dust can penetrate.

That said, it is not uncommon to find dirt and dust all over your car’s dashboard. The best you can always do is to regularly clean the area to keep it neat at all times. Interestingly, cleaning your car’s dashboard won’t take you much time and you don’t necessarily need to purchase a cleaning compound.

How To Clean Inside of Car Dashboard

How To Clean Inside of Car Dashboard

Things You Need

  • Bucket of clean water
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Microfiber rag
  • Small brush
  • Polisher

With just these few items listed above, you’re set to remove the dirt hiding inside your car’s dashboard.

Step 1:

Start by vacuuming the car – this is the first step to cleaning the inside of a car, regardless of which side you wish to clean. More so, while vacuuming, ensure to pick out large debris on the floor; this can include plastic wastes, nylons, grocery bags, ice cream packs, etc.

Ensure that you remove everything you could see on the floor. Remove the carpets and vacuum the entire floor. Don’t forget to vacuum the dashboard itself – that’s the main place you’d be working on, so it needs to be as clean as possible.

Since you’re trying to get rid of the dirt hiding in cervices; it is advisable to attach a small brush to your vacuum cleaner’s hose. The brush can get into those tight places and clean them up.

Step 2:

Once you’re done vacuuming, next is to wipe down the entire dashboard. To do this, dip the microfiber towel or rag into the bucket of water. Do not allow the rag to be saturated with water, it just needs to be slightly damp. So, if the towel or rag is fully soaked, squeeze out the water, and then start cleaning.

However, depending on the type of dashboard your car has, the cleaning style would differ. For plastic dashboards, you can add vinegar to the water you’ll be using to clean it up. Also, using mild soap is recommendable.

In contrast, if your car comes with a leather dashboard, you’d need to pour out a small amount of oil on a damp towel and use it to wipe it down. It is not out of the box to purchase a non-alkaline leather cleaner for this purpose.

After you have wiped down the entire dashboard, you can now focus on the inside and tight corners where dirt could still be hiding.

Step 3:

To clean the inside of a car dashboard, you need to use a small soft bristles toothbrush or paintbrush; these are the possible brush types that can get into those tight corners. With the brush in your hand, gently work on those tight, hard to reach areas in no particular sequence.

Pay attention while cleaning your steering wheel, center console, radio system, glass dash cover, and gear shift. Ensure that the brush gets into those tight places and clean everything.

Important things to note:

  • Please do not pour water directly on your car’s dashboard, it can cause electrical issues and lead to costly damages.
  • If you see droplets of water on your dashboard after the cleaning, get a dry microfiber towel and clean out the water.
  • Don’t apply so much pressure while cleaning the vent and other fragile areas that are prone to damage if handled with force.
  • If you purchased a cleaning product for this purpose, kindly read the instructions and follow the guidelines written on the label.
  • Don’t use a blower for removing debris from your car’s dashboard.
  • Don’t spray compounds directly to your car’s dashboard – unless the manufacturer indicates and assures that that the product is safe to be applied directly to the dashboard.

After you have cleaned out the dirt and debris hiding in tight corners in your car’s dashboard, maybe you should spend a little more time and detail your dashboard. Yes, detailing would make it look great and stunning; the process won’t you a long time.

How To Detail Car Dashboard

It’s pretty simple, get a polishing compound or a dashboard detailing product, read the instructions provided by the manufacturer, and then apply it to your dashboard following the instructions you read. However, below is the general way of detailing a car dashboard.

  • Ensure that there is no residue or dirt remaining on the dashboard surface
  • Pour out a small quantity of the polishing compound to a clean microfiber towel or applicator pad
  • Gently rub the applicator pad or microfiber towel on the surface
  • Focus on a small portion at a time, and do not apply the polish hurriedly

Little by little, and you’d be done detailing your dashboard. Apparently, it’s going to be looking great after all these. If you could see scratches on the dashboard, use a scratch remover compound to fix that.


You’ve now known how to clean inside of car dashboards. We’d advise that you pay attention to fragile components so that you won’t end up breaking or damaging them due to mishandling.

Also, it is advisable to clean your car’s dashboard once in a while – it is part of maintenance practices that improve the value of a vehicle.

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