Did you know that clean seat belts in cars should be done frequently? Yes, that’s right. Clean belts are often overlooked when it comes to car care and maintenance but they can become dirty just like any other car part.
That being said, it is important to know how to clean car seat belts. In detail, you must at least know how to clean seat belt straps and clean seat belt webbing.
If you are clueless in this regard, do not worry. We have got you covered. Below is a detailed article featuring all the materials you need to prepare and all the steps you need to take. You can use it to master the art of seat belt cleaning!
Briefly, the steps are as follows:
- Get the right setup for a breeze cleaning
- Apply the cleaner onto both sides of the belt
- Scrub the belt from top to bottom with a brush
- Wipe the belt down with a fresh microfiber towel
- Pat the belt dry with another microfiber towel
- Remove the clamp to return the belt to its original setup
We will uncover all the details as well as additional steps along with homemade solutions for stubborn stains, moldy odor, and stains below. So, what are you waiting for? Read on to pocket everything!
Table of Contents
- What You Need to Have
- 6 Simple Steps to Clean Dirty Seat Belts
- Step 1: Get the right setup for a breeze cleaning
- Step 2: Apply the cleaner onto both sides of the belt
- Step 3: Scrub the belt from top to bottom with a brush
- Step 4: Wipe the belt down with a fresh microfiber towel
- Step 5: Pat the belt dry with another microfiber towel
- Step 6: Remove the clamp to return the belt to its original setup
- Additional Steps That You Can Take
What You Need to Have
Prepare the following materials:
- Car seat belt cleaner (Or fabric cleaner or all-purpose cleaner)
- Soft-bristle brush
- Microfiber towel (At least two)
Optional Additional Materials:
- Mild soap or dish soap
- Baking Soda (Or cat litter or uncooked rice)
- Rubbing Alcohol
Once you have everything ready, proceed to the next section.
6 Simple Steps to Clean Dirty Seat Belts
Step 1: Get the right setup for a breeze cleaning
To start, locate the seat belts that need cleaning. We recommend that you work on the driver’s seat belt first, then the passenger’s, and the rest in the back seats. Pull the belt forward and out until it reaches the end and becomes stiff. Secure a clamp near the belt reel to keep it from retracting. Then, you have easy access to the straps and webs.
Step 2: Apply the cleaner onto both sides of the belt
Spray the car seat belt cleaner directly onto the belt. Alternatively, you can use a fabric cleaner or an all-purpose cleaner. Make sure that your applications are even and light. Next, use your fingers to hold the sides of the belt and flip it for an underside spritz.
Some recommended seat belt cleaners are Chemical Guys SPI22016 Total Interior Cleaner & Protectant, CAR CARE HAVEN Ultra Cleaner X, and Adam’s Multi-Use Foaming Cleaner.
Now, use a soft-bristle brush to scrub the belt from top to bottom. Remember to go in a single direction and avoid circular buffing motions. Use only downward strokes with moderate force. If you scrub too intensely, you may damage the belt’s threads.
Top Tip: If the seat belts are still caked with dust, dirt, grease, and/or grime, repeat steps two and three as many times as needed.
Step 4: Wipe the belt down with a fresh microfiber towel
After about three to four minutes, wipe the belt down with a fresh microfiber towel. As with step two, only use downward strokes and moderate force. Here, you are trying to get rid of any excess moisture.
Step 5: Pat the belt dry with another microfiber towel
Then, use another dry microfiber towel to pat the belt dry. Afterward, give it more time to air dry. It is best to allot at least one night for the belt to dry completely. Be patient! If you rush this step, you will be left with even more regrets. Why? Well, wet or damp car seat belts are ideal homes for mold and mildew. Consequently, you will have to shell more money and time into combating them with specialty cleaners and gear.
Note: Do not replace the microfiber towel with napkins or tissues. They are too thin to get the job done properly.
Step 6: Remove the clamp to return the belt to its original setup
Once it is, you can remove the clamp that you have installed in the first step. Retract it to return to the original set-up, and you are good to go!
Do the same for all of the seat belts on your car. So, there you have it! The complete step-by-step guide to clean a seat belt. It is much easier than you expected, right?
The above steps will work if you have mild to moderate filth on seat belts. However, if you need to deal with more stubborn stains, refer to this next section.
Additional Steps That You Can Take
If you need to get rid of extra stubborn stains
There are many different homemade solutions that you can go for when it comes to stubborn stains. But in this section, we will show you our own tested and proven best way to clean seat belts.
In a small cup or bottle, mix warm water and mild dish soap in a 1:3 ratio. Make sure that the soap you use does not have bleach or vinegar in it. Otherwise, acids will ruin the belt.
Transfer the solution into a spray bottle and cap it tightly to shake. This ensures that everything is mixed well. Then, spritz the solution onto the bristles of a brush. Or, you can directly dip the brush into the cup containing the solution.
Soak the brush just enough; do not oversaturate it. Next, scrub the stain with the brush. Again, use downward strokes, working from the belt top to the bottom. Scrub gently and add bits of cleaner now and then to assist in removing the stains.
Then, wipe it down with a new microfiber towel. The stain should fade away with any excess moisture. If not, consider using a steam machine. You can purchase one at a local store in-person or at an e-commerce site virtually. Or, another viable option is to rent the steam machine from a local provider.
You can also use a hot water extractor if you have it handy. When handling either machine, make sure that you operate a low moisturizing setting, and run through the belt’s length thoroughly.
If you need to get rid of any moldy odor
Mix 15mL of mild or dish soap and 240mL of warm water in a cup or bottle. Then, add in 30mL of vinegar. Use a spoon or chopstick to stir the mixture until it is soapy. Transfer the solution into a sprayer and spritz it onto a microfiber towel.
Next, use the towel to lightly dab and pat the parts of the belt with moldy spores. Spray a special mold preventative product while the belt is still damp. Then, complete by wiping it dry with a fresh towel and leave it overnight.
If the smell lingers in the interiors of the car, hang up damp rid bags. Or, place a box of baking soda in the car. You can also replace baking soda with cat litter or uncooked rice. These are all affordable but effective odor-absorbing materials that are both effective and affordable.
If you need to get rid of sweat stains
For sweat stains, prepare the following solution: warm water, mild or dish soap, and rubbing alcohol. Mix well in a spray bottle and cap it tightly. Spritz directly onto the belt or if you prefer, onto a microfiber towel and wipe the belt from downwards. Do this quickly and go over it once more with a clean towel to finish.
Congratulations! You are now a master in cleaning seat belts. Hopefully, you found this article on how to clean car seat belts easy to follow and helpful. Now, you do not have to ever worry about not having clean car seatbelts anymore.
If you have followed the six steps above, share your experience and results with us in the comments. Also, in case you have any useful tips and tricks on this topic, leave a comment too. We are always looking forward to hearing from our readers!