Every morning, I leave my house with my arms full. I start for work with my coffee in hand, my lunchbox digging into my arm, my gym bag slung across my shoulder, and all while sporting my giant work briefcase (which is probably the reason for my back issues.) And what do I do when I get to my car? I dump everything into the back seat and set off for the day.
I’m sure I am not the only one who uses their car as a second storage closet. As you can see from my personal photos in this blog, I have been hoarding all sorts of items in my car. Enough is enough…I finally cleaned my car! Now, I can offer you some tips to clean and organize your vehicle!
1. Clean Out the Garbage
It’s easy to simply throw your trash on the floor of your car. We all do it; even if we don’t like to admit it. Think about it this way: your car is probably out in the heat for hours on end (if you live in Florida, it can get pretty toasty!) The combination of the heat and all that trash buildup is trapped inside of your car. I don’t know about you… but I don’t want to drive in a car that smells like old, hot McDonald’s french fries!
You can avoid the buildup of trash by simply taking it out of your car. Even if you have a ton of garbage right now, you can start by grabbing a handful of items each time you leave your car and throwing them away.You can even recruit a friend or coworker to give you a hand. I’m sure they wouldn’t mind helping you out; especially if you do it in exchange to help them clean out their car. (Tip: I recommend keeping a Febreeze spray can in your car to help with the smell after you have removed your trash items.)
You can also find alternatives to bringing trash into your vehicle. For example, I drink a lot of water, which results in piles of plastic water bottles everywhere, including the floor of my car. As an alternative, I have invested in a large tin water bottle. This not only helps in reducing my buildup of trash in my car, but it is also good for the environment.
Another good tip is to leave some plastic bags in your car. This way, if you ever have garbage, you can place it in the plastic bag and carry it out with you the next time you leave your car. This will prevent items like napkins, empty coffee cups, or fast-food bags from accumulating.
2. Get rid of those clothes
I have a bad habit of keeping piles of clothes in my car. You never know what you need until you need it; therefore, I leave all different types of articles of clothing in the backseat of my car. To reduce the buildup of clothing items, I have created my “Just-In-Case” bag that I now keep in the trunk of my car. This bag includes anything and everything that I might need; a fresh dress for work, flip flops, an extra pair of jeans, even a windbreaker if it is raining. By keeping all of these “just-in-case” items in one bag in my trunk, I can avoid leaving clothes in the backseat of my car. This keeps everything in one place, and I am comforted in knowing that in case of an emergency, I know I have backup.
My gym bag and yoga mat also stay in the trunk of my car. By keeping a fresh pair of gym clothes as well as my sneakers in the trunk, it’s easy for me to stay committed to my gym routine. Plus, it’s extra motivation knowing that I don’t have to stop home after work to get gym clothes; so I have no excuse to miss a gym day!
3. Keep Important Items Safe
Don’t leave anything important in your car; this is my number one rule. You never know what could happen; someone could break into your car, or you could get your car towed. It’s best that anything and everything important stays either with you or in your home. Tablets, wallets, purses and phones should never be left haphazardly on your car seat. By keeping this in mind, you’re less likely to add to the clutter in your car, and you’re less likely to lose something important.
I always recommend using your middle console and glove compartment to store any phone chargers, auto information, flashlights, and anything else you might need. By keeping these items in these units and out of sight, you can avoid someone possibly looking in your car and taking your valuables. This will also help clean up the clutter that has accumulated overtime in your vehicle.
Once you have cleaned out and organized your car; treat yourself! Take your car to your local car wash, grab a new air freshener or even snag some new car seat covers. Your car is like your second home, so treat it with care.
Order University Content Creator
Natalie enjoys pugs and Pinot Grigio.