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How To Clean a Car Seat

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If there’s one thing all parents know, it’s that their child’s car seat can often become a portal to a world full of rogue toys, crunched up crackers and lots and lots of dirt and grime. What lies beneath your child’s car seat? Moreover, what is lurking in the threads of the fabric and the straps? We’ve got some tips for how to clean a car seat that’ll bridge the gap between reality and the mystical world of germs and leftover snacks. Loose French fry covered in dust, anyone?

How to clean a car seat

Step 1: Take the car seat out of your car

Remove the car seat from your vehicle before you begin the cleaning process. Not only will it be much easier to manage, but you’ll also be able to clean the area under your child’s car seat.

Step 2: Vacuum

Vacuuming your child’s car seat and the area underneath their seat is the second step of the process. Vacuuming, especially with a thin vacuum attachment, will pick up most debris, like leftover snacks and dirt. Take your time with this process. The more you’re able to vacuum, the easier it will be when it comes to step three.

Step 3: Clean the car seat

Now it’s time to wipe down your child’s car seat using cleaning sprays and soaps. Mild, or hypoallergenic, soaps are a good option, as well as antibacterial cleaning soaps and sprays, as well. If there are stains on your child’s car seat, pay special attention to the area with your soap and spray. Don’t be shy! Feel free to cover the car seat in its entirety with your cleaning product of choice.

Step 4: Scrub the car seat

After your soap has had a bit of time to work its magic, now it’s time for a bit of elbow grease, depending on how dirty your child’s car seat has become. Using a damp cloth, or for dirtier car seats, a scrubbing brush or sponge, wipe down the car seat. Pay special attention to the crevices and deeper stains and be sure that all visible soap has been wiped thoroughly.

Step 5: Allow the car seat to air dry

Once your child’s car seat has dried thoroughly, then you can install it back into your car. Be sure it’s installed properly and securely. Here are some car seat safety tips to follow.

How to remove stains from car seats

Using stain removers might seem like an obvious choice, but keep in mind that some stain removers use harsh chemicals that could irritate your child’s skin. Opt for a solution of vinegar and baking soda instead. Simply spray vinegar onto the stain in question and sprinkle with a generous amount of baking soda and let sit until it’s dry. Once dry, you may vacuum away the remaining baking soda. Not only is this an effective and safe method for removing stains, but the combo also acts as a natural deodorizer.

How to wash car seat straps

It might be tempting to toss car seat straps, or any portion of your child’s car seat, into the washing machine and dryer. But we advise against that. Your child’s car seat straps are made up of tightly woven thread that have been tested and approved for optimal protection in case you are in a car accident. Tossing the straps in the washing machine and dryer can weaken the thread, which can affect the efficacy of the straps. We recommend wiping the car seat straps down with vinegar and baking soda or using a mild soap or spray instead.

How often should I clean my child’s car seat?

It’s recommended to clean your child’s car seat once a week through vacuuming and wiping down, and to deep clean once every two weeks through removing the seat and washing the fabric. Although it might seem like a chore, remember that your child’s skin comes in contact with their car seat multiple times a day, and it’s important to maintain a clean environment for their health. With our tips, you’ll be a car seat cleaning expert in no time.

For more information on car seat safety, please click here.

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