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How to quickly tidy up your car

Kristin Chessman is a freelance writer, editor and mom from Southern California with a passion for travel, fashion, Disney, the beach, Italian food and all-things celebrity. Follow Kristin on Twitter @KristinChessman.

How to… Get a clutter-free car

Think of your car as an extension of your home. Just like your house, your car needs extra TLC every now and then, too. We’re not just talking about washing and waxing, either. Cleaning and organizing the inside of your car will simplify your life and make for a more comfortable, safer ride for the entire family. Check out these simple steps to quickly tidy up your car.

Woman in organized carStep 1: Eliminate clutter

 

The first step to quickly tidying up your car is clearing out the clutter. Just like in your home, clutter has a way of piling up. Nowadays, most cars have tons of compartments and stow-away storage, making it that much harder to prevent clutter from building. Take the time to clean clutter from your car every few days. Don't forget to check under the seats and in seat-back pockets, too.

Step 2: Clean out the glove compartment

What's living in your glove compartment? Napkins, ketchup and straws? If so, it's time to tidy up your car and clean out the glove compartment. Limit your glove compartment to the essentials, like your car's manual, your latest registration and insurance information, a flashlight, a tire gauge, a local map and a pen and notepad.

Step 3: Get organized

As you quickly tidy up your car, think about the best way to keep it organized and efficient. For example, if your car doubles as your office, purchase a plastic file box for the trunk. Prep another box to hold office supplies. For day-to-day driving, invest in a car organizer to hold your cell phone, coins and remote control. If you need to store DVDs and CDs for longer car trips, shop for an auto entertainment storage unit to hang from a seat back. Lastly, organize toys in a clear plastic container.

Step 4: Stash trash

In order to tidy up your car, you'll need to plan ahead. Designate a spot to throw trash, whether it's in a paper bag or a nylon receptacle. Set a day to take out the trash to keep the bag from stinking up the car.

Step 5: Prep the trunk

Running out of room in your trunk for groceries? It's time to re-evaluate its contents and tidy up your car. Keep must-haves like jumper cables, a tool kit, flares, water, a blanket and a first-aid kit. Opt for a trunk organizer to keep all these automobile necessities in one easy-to-find place.

Step 6: Clean the interior & Exterior

Once you've removed the clutter and taken out the trash, it's time to clean the interior and exterior of the car. Tidy up your car by dusting the dashboard and cleaning floor mats. Grab a multi-surface wipe and clean cup holders and door panels. Don't forget to clean the windows and mirror, too. Vacuum the carpeting of the vehicle and cloth upholstery to instantly tidy up your car. Lastly, wash the exterior yourself or take it to a local car wash.

Step 7: Keep it up

Now that you've gone to the trouble of tidying up your car, it's important to continue cleaning it on a regular basis, especially if you drive with children or pets. Keep in mind that regular car maintenance isn't as tough as it may seem; emptying the trash and clearing clutter can be done while filling up at the gas station.

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