Vehicles with a leather interior are mostly luxury models. One would naturally want to maintain and preserve this expensive feature. The first few things you need to know are the culprits that can transform your leather car seats into something grimy and crusted. Food crumbs and greases can plant unsightly marks and prints on the leather. Spilled soda, juice, or chocolate drinks are also common sources of stains that can ruin a perfectly good leather interior. Check your body for soil and tiny rough materials before entering the vehicle. Those particles may actually scratch the cover. You may not notice it at first, but if it becomes a habit for you or other regular passengers, you will see the damage in your leather eventually.
Knowing what to avoid is half the battle. It is also imperative to know what kind of leather your vehicle interior has. There are various types, from one hundred percent genuine leather, to suede, to vinyl-coated leather. The importance lies in that this fact will most likely determine which type of cleaning and conditioning material is to be used.
- Refrain from using household detergents, home cleaners, saddle soaps, and hair conditioners. These contain chemicals that can damage the leather. Don’t even think of experimenting with other cleaners. Always use the car cleaning products intended for the type of interior that you have. You can determine that by reading the label on the back of the products. Find the one that says “for leather car interior”. Usually a special cloth is included in such cleaning kits.
- Get rid of the filth and grime off your leather interior. This should be done before using any of the cleaning and conditioning products. Use a fresh, spongy cloth to wipe away the oil and tiny debris. Do not forget to pop out the dirt from the gaps and crevices.
- Apply the leather cleaner using the special cloth. Do the application one segment at a time to ensure that you don’t miss any parts of the interior. Lather it unhurriedly. If the filth is too much on some parts, you can lather a little harder, but not to the point of scratching the leather.
- Remove the cleaning substance and dirt from the leather. The best way to do this is to wipe it off with a damp cloth. When all the gunk has been mopped away, dry the leather with a clean dry cloth.
- Leather tends to lose its natural oil and may crack over time. To replace the lost oil and to make the leather constantly lustrous, wipe it with a special leather conditioner that uses a foam applicator. Just as with the cleaner, apply the conditioner segment by segment. Let the conditioner be infused right into the leather for a couple of minutes for maximum effect.
Cleaning your leather interior can be done in long intervals such as every few months. On the other hand, conditioning can be done more often. Besides the actual price of the leather interior, meticulous cleaning is the other cost of such a luxury.