Always Remove Car Seats When Deep Cleaning a Car! – Here’s Why

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I see too many people not removing car seats when deep cleaning a car. I think that’s a big mistake, and today I’m gonna show you why you should always remove car seats when deep cleaning your car.

When deep cleaning a car, you should always remove car seats to be able to clean the car thoroughly and get the best outcome possible.

My friend paid a deep cleaning of the car, and he wasn’t happy with the results. When he asked them if they removed the seats, they said that they didn’t.

I don’t understand that way of “deep” cleaning. That’s why I want to discuss about some reasons why you should always remove car seats.

You'll Have More Space For Work

Having enough space to work when detailing the car is very important. If everything is tightened up, you will have many difficulties cleaning some parts of the car.

Yes I know, it takes some time to remove the seats out, but it’ll make the whole process much easier, and I think it’s worth it.

Just think about stretching the vacuum hose all over the car, because you can’t reach some spots easily. With seats removed, you’ll have more space for all of that.

You'll Have Access To "Hidden" Areas

removing car seats is important when deep cleaning a car, trash under the seat
My Friends BMW

Look at the image above, I was deep cleaning my friend’s BMW, and here’s what I saw when I removed the seat out. Look at all that trash – coins, papers, candies, etc.

If you don’t remove seats out, you’ll never have this much access to the under-seat area. 

Usually, that’s where the most dirt and trash will hide – because it’s hard to clean it up. Vacuuming this area with seats removed will only around 5 minutes.

If you leave seats installed, it’ll take much longer.

Also, everything around the seat, such as an armrest is hard to reach when the seats are inside. By removing the seats, you’ll get 100% access to everything around the dashboard. 

Do you see that gap between the carpets (ventilation and the cable), there were so much dust and dirt, and there’s no other way to clean it then removing the seats.

Seats Are Easier To Clean Outside

When you have the seat outside, it’s 100 times easier to clean it. You have 360-degree access to the seat. I’d say even 3D since you can turn it upside down and everything.

There’s no way you could do that in the car.

Car seat rails are almost impossible to clean if you don’t take them out. And trust me, there’s so much dirt stick to them and they are often hard to clean just by wiping with the rag from inside the car.

And again, working with the brush, and later with the extractor is so much easier outside. You can just walk around the seat and clean everything.

Back Seat Is Important Too!

Don’t want you to think that I meant on front seat removal only. The back seat is also very important to remove.

Check the image below:

car back seat removed with all the trash under

Look at all that trash trapped underneath the seat. Not only trash but spilled beverages as well. Since this is an older car (2001), the sponge from the back seat also started to tear off. 

A little vacuuming and a few sprays of APC made the job done in no time. 

Furthermore, when I had the rear seat outside, it was also easier to clean it, as well as the rear bench. The rear bench stayed in the car, don’t take it out.

From this image, you can see how the armrest is dirty, and having seat installed in the car, I wouldn’t be able to clean it thoroughly.

Deep Cleaning of The Carpet Is Easier As Well

The same image again, but I need to show you that dirty carpet. There were plenty of little stones, and some mud as well. 

Related: How To Turn Shop Vac Into Extractor: Quick and Affordable Method

I marked these spots with arrows because that’s the part that’s impossible to reach with your extractor vacuum with the seats inside your car.

Even the extracting preparation is easier since you’ll easily clean these areas with the brush, especially if you use drill brush attachments.

A Better Customer Satisfaction

This is the conclusion of everything. When you take the seats out, you’ll do a better deep clean than ever. And together with that comes the customer’s satisfaction.

Just when you tell them that you have removed the seats to access all the trapped dirt underneath the seats, they’ll instantly be more happy and satisfied with the job done. 

In the end, customer satisfaction is what’s most important. Or yours if you’re cleaning your own car.

Removing The Car Seats Isn't Rocket Science

I know that some of you are probably afraid of removing car seats. And I do understand you – Airbag failure can occur, seat heating may stop working, etc. 

But car seat removal is actually a really simple job. When it comes to tools needed, you’ll only need a mechanic toolset, I recommend this 192-pieces DeWalt Mechanics Tool Set (check the price on Amazon now). 

It’s a bit more expensive than the others, but that’s an all-in-one set and will have ratchets for every type of car.

Just remember to always unplug the car battery before unplugging the cables underneath the seat, and no problem will occur.

TIP: If you’re still afraid, talk to the car owner before removing the seats out, ask them if you can remove the seat, but also warn them that there’s a possibility for airbag failure to show up.

Check my step-by-step guide on how to remove car seats without causing an airbag fault. In that article you’ll see how easy it is, and everyone can do it.

I hope that you’ll take my advice and remove the car seats next time you will be deep cleaning some car (if you didn’t do that before). 

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What are your experiences with car seat removal? What do you think, is this really important? Tell me in the comment section below.

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This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. helen

    An easier way to clean and detail a car – imagine what little or big “treasures” one might find in the nooks and hard places to reach. The photos are great as a visual is always an effective way to point out an issue. I agree that customer satisfaction is of the utmost importance and a thorough job well done. I know the frustration of not being able to find something that has dropped between the car seats or under the seats and quite often giving up to reach further is too hard. Removal of seats definitely makes things a lot easier and a better job achieved. Well described Petar.

    1. Petar Dzaja

      Thanks Helen, i just tried to give all the reasons why everyone should remove seats when deep cleaning the car. Thanks for your comment 🙂

  2. Roy

    It will certainly be easier to clean your cars´ interior with the seats removed. You have explained the reasons well in your post. As you also mention, the only thing that has been keeping me away from removing the seats when cleaning the car, si the fear of not getting the seats properly back in place and the risk of electrical failures to occur afterwards. 

    You don´t mention how to reset possible indications of electrical failures that is showing after the power is returned to the car. Is it a quick fix or do you have to go to a repair shop to reset the car?

    Do you have an interior shampoo that you prefer? I am using Autoglym´s Interior Shampoo, which I think does a great job.


    1. Petar Dzaja

      Hi Roy, thanks a lot for your comment. You should visit a repair shop to remove those errors. However, if you have some knowledge and equipment, you can reset it too. You need an OBDII tool which has the ability to check airbag failures, and fix them.

      You can get those for around $100-150 bucks on Amazon. However, the more professional versions are too expensive, so I think it’s always better to take the car to the repair shop.

      Yes, my go to product for interior shampoo is Chemical Guys Fabric Clean, you can see all my recommendations here.


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