First, and for regularly-maintained steering wheels, spray a quick shot of interior cleaner on a dry microfiber towel, and wipe the steering wheel in 360-degree turns. Grip the towel and the wheel and twist back and forth. Be sure to spray the cleaner onto the towel first and not directly onto the wheel, as any overspray may hit the gauge buster and leak behind the clear plastic which can’t be cleaned. For steering wheels that are cleaned less frequently, spray interior cleaner onto a soft interior brush and agitate the area until lather is created.
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If the wheel has stitching, use the brush to tamp the fibers in between the thread to release the trapped dirt. Immediately wipe the lather with a dry microfiber towel. For heavy grime, spray interior cleaner onto an interior scrub pad and gently wipe the wheel in short strokes. Use light to medium pressure at first, to avoid scrubbing off the color in worn areas of the wheel. Then immediately wipe the area before it dries with a microfiber towel.
In a pinch, you can use a toothbrush and a three-to-one mixture of water and all-purpose cleaner. Scrub the area and quickly wipe dry with a microfiber towel. All-purpose cleaner will help cut through the body oils and grease buildup. Immediately afterwards, wipe the steering wheel with warm water and a microfiber towel in 360-degree motions to remove any leftover all-purpose cleaner, to avoid prolonged skin contact. If you have access to a steam machine, this is the perfect time to take advantage of its antibacterial capabilities.
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Use the single-hole nozzle on Medium and work the steering wheel while wiping the moisture immediately afterwards. Rotate the towel as it fills with dirt, grime and bacteria and be sure to avoid washing these towels with your regular laundry. Steering wheels are breeding grounds for germs and bacteria, but with regular maintenance we can help minimize potential health hazards.