“Selfie-Discipline” #20 – Clean Out Your Car

Many of us spend large amounts of time in our cars toting kids, food, coffee, sports equipment, groceries, and any number of things around. Every now and then, our vehicles need a little attention. A good rule of thumb is to clear out your car at the end of every season. Begin by dumping the trash, remembering to look inside pockets and on the floor. Then, remove items that won’t be used in upcoming months, such as last season’s sports gear or clothing.

This is also a good time to consider if there is anything you might want to put INTO your car for the season ahead. For example, if winter is coming, make sure you have a brush for snow and ice. Or, if summer is coming, you may want to have a reflective windshield screen at the ready. It is always a good idea to have an umbrella, a blanket, a container of wipes, and a few bottles of water in your car at all times.

As long as you are decluttering, it doesn’t hurt to check your tires and oil, and maybe drive your car through a car wash. Vacuum the carpets and wipe down the interior. If you like, pop in a fresh air freshener. It’s also smart to check your glove box and make sure your registration and insurance are current. Doing these things approximately every three months will keep your car in good working condition and looking orderly.

How often do you declutter and clean your car?

18 thoughts on ““Selfie-Discipline” #20 – Clean Out Your Car”

    1. It’s a natural window for clearing out not only trash, but supplies we no longer need. Plus, it just feels good to know that the car is never going to get too far out of control!

  1. I think I err on the obsessive-side when it comes to cleaning out my car. It’s a daily habit. When I leave the car, I remove any trash or other items that were brought in that day. When new registration or insurance cards arrive, I switch out the outdated ones. I keep a duster in the glove compartment to wipe things down between car washes. Another habit I have is to fill up my car before the half-empty mark. This way I never worry about running out of gas.
    Linda Samuels recently posted…How a Simple Change in Perspective Can Spark Your Fresh StartMy Profile

    1. I always fill up when I have 1/4 tank left. I am pretty regular about clearing out my car, but I know many people are not. Hopefully, making a mental link between the change of seasons and giving the car a thorough cleaning will be helpful to those who tend to let it go too long!

  2. I try to clean out my car every time I go to the car wash. I love a clean car! I keep it up by taking out whatever I brought into the car when I get home. I used to do this when my kids were young. They would ask if they could bring a toy or something with them in the car and my answer was “Yes, as long as you bring it back in the house when we get home.” It worked!

    1. I love that instruction to your children. Not only did it keep the clutter at bay, but it also fostered a good habit for your kids. I bet they have pretty clean cars now themselves!

  3. I clean out my car fairly regularly. Like, Linda, I switch the registration and insurance as they come in. And, I fill up on gas when I’m about half full also. I have a fear of running out of gas on a highway or on some lonely, isolated road that has no cell service.. (probably unreasonable – but there it is). I love your tips, Seana. When I was toting children around the sports equipment was a big part of what filled my car.

    1. I think most families these days have a lot of “gear” in their cars. And when the car is in heavy use by a busy family, it doesn’t take long for the clutter to pile up. Just getting the trash out can be a powerful first step! The gas station or car wash are great places to “pitch in,” right?

  4. My car is generally very neat (I guess I’m my father’s daughter in that way) but occasionally I’ll look in the side pockets on the doors and find expired car wash coupons (so annoying to miss out on the $5 savings!) or directions I printed to go somewhere that I expected to go again some time.
    Janet Barclay recently posted…Creating Your Blogging VoiceMy Profile

    1. It seems like organizers are pretty particular about their cars. We’ve all developed a system for keeping it neat. But even I have to admit that my car used to get pretty bad when I was toting car loads of children and their gear around. I remember a friend once saying she had it “fumigated” every now and then. That still makes me smile:)

  5. Awww, the car. I make sure I empty the trash can every couple of weeks or so. I usually clean the vehicles three times a year, in the spring, after the winter weather has subsided, at the end of fall after the leaves have fallen, and in the summer, after we go to the beach mid-July. While I don’t drive nearly as much these days, I do find it is more relaxing to have an organized car than not. Also, I found that it is less dangerous because if there was a quick stop, items that are not strapped down, will fly.
    Sabrina Quairoli recently posted…How to Organize Donation ItemsMy Profile

  6. I keep my car clean and it’s easy because it never gets very dirty. The trunk however is another matter! I am not good about cleaning it out. Thanks for the reminder.

    1. We go through stages of messiness with our cars. The trunk is a good project when the weather warms and you can follow it up by vacuuming it out.

    1. There was a phase here in CT when they stopped sending any notification about the expiration of registration. A friend tipped me off to this, and I came home, checked, and realized I was past due. I renewed it immediately online, but I made a mental note to check it going forward. It is so easy to forget this!

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