How To Clean Car Floor Mats (Cloth & Rubber) + More! (2023)

Almost everyone you pick up with your car brings along dirt stuck to their shoes, food crumbs, sweet wraps, etc. The list becomes endless. It can get frustrating sometimes. Although it is important to clean your car’s exterior, the interior matters more when it comes to having a good driving experience.

However, you’ll agree with me that the most challenging part when cleaning your car’s interior is the floor mats.

No matter how tidy you are, it’s impossible to prevent dirt on this vital part of your car’s interior. Religiously following the steps that are laid out in this article can give your car interior a new look- whether you use rubber or cloth floor mats.

How to Clean CLOTH Car Floor Mats?

Unlike rubber floor mats, cloth car floor mats attract dirt quickly. If they remain wet for a long time without adequate ventilation in the car, you won’t like the odor that will emanate from them.
Fortunately, there’s a simple way to get stains out of cloth car floor mats.

Just follow this process:

STEP 1: Take the Mats Out of the Car

Do not clean the cloth mats in the car. Washing the carpets in the vehicle may expose your car’s interior to soap and water, which can cause irreversible damage to other parts.

Most floor mats are removable. However, if your car cloth mats are not removable, there’s no need to try to remove them forcefully. Take your car to professionals for cleaning.

STEP 2- Brush off the Dirt

Scrubbing the mats with soap and rinsing them almost immediately is not advisable. Rigid materials can stick to the cloth mats’ surface with water, thereby making the removal impossible.
Brush or vacuum the dirt off your mats for a start!

STEP 3- Scrub with Baking Soda & Water

Baking soda helps to remove older and stubborn stains. Also, it can help to neutralize unpleasant odors in your car permanently.


Scrub the mats with baking soda and water until you see the stain vanish.

STEP 4- Wash with Soapy Water

Add soap to water and scrub the mats with a hand brush. Ensure you use a suitable soap for car mats and wash all parts thoroughly.

After being satisfied with what you see, rinse the soap off with clean water.

STEP 5- Dry the Mats

Spread the mats in a ventilated place after rinsing off the soap. Do not be in a hurry to return them into the car, before they are fully dry. Leaving even a little moisture in them may cause an unpleasant odor later on.

Here’s a quick recap of the steps:

(Video) The Most Extreme Way to Clean Car Floor Mats To Perfection!

1- Take the mats out of the car.
2- Brush off the dirt.
3- Scrub with baking soda and water.
4- Wash with soapy water and rinse with clean water.
5- Dry the mats.

How to Clean RUBBER Car Floor Mats?

Rubber car floor mats are easy to clean compared to cloth car floor mats. Within a few minutes, you should be through with the process.

Follow the process listed below:

STEP 1- Sweep Off the Dirt and Debris

Take the rubber mats out of your car and remove the dirt on them with a broom. Also, you can remove tough stains by beating them on the ground for a few minutes.

STEP 2- Soak in Soapy Water and Scrub

Keep in mind that there’s a limit to what brooms can do to car rubber mats, especially if there are tough stains on them.

Soak the mats in soapy water and scrub with a stiff-bristled brush after a few minutes. Apply pressure when washing to see satisfactory results.

If you want to avoid manual scrubbing, you would want to use a drill scrub brush.

STEP 3- Rinse and Dry

Place the rubber mats under a running tap to rinse away the soap in them. Alternatively, you may use a hose. Dry the mats in a ventilated place or wipe with a clean cloth. Avoid drying them in the sun as it can cause damage to the rubber.

Alternatively, you may use a good mat cleaner to clean your rubber mats.

How to Clean Car Mats with Bad Stains?

Mud, grease, dirt, oily foods, and other substances can produce bad stains on your car mats. Don’t worry about it!

Follow the simple procedure listed below to eliminate the bad stains.

(Video) 3 EASY steps to clean rubber floor mats


Baking Soda (1 cup)
Vinegar (1 cup)
Liquid soap (Half cup)
Spray bottle
Hand brush


STEP 1- Remove Dust and Dirt

First off, take the mats out of your car and get rid of dust and dirt on them. You must take this crucial step before moving on to the next.

STEP 2- Soak the Mats with Baking Soda, Vinegar, and Soap

A. Mix a cup of baking soda, with a cup of vinegar, and with half a cup of liquid soap.
B. Pour the mixture into a bottle (a spray bottle preferably) and spray on the parts with tough stains.

C. Leave for 10 minutes.
D. Use a hand brush to scrub the mats, especially the parts with tough stains. Rinse with water.

STEP 3- Leave the Mats to Dry

Returning the mats into the car without allowing them to dry may produce an unpleasant smell in your vehicle. Place the car mats in a ventilated area and allow them to dry well. Your car floor mats will look like new.

Can You Steam Clean Car Floor Mats?

Yes, you can! Follow these steps:

STEP 1- Vacuum the Floor Mats

Take the floor mats out of the car and vacuum them thoroughly.

STEP 2- Use a Steam Cleaner

There are different steam cleaners for scrubbing floor mats, depending on your budget. They usually come with a brush attachment, making your work easy and fast.

STEP 3- Wipe with a Towel

Clean the mats with a dry towel after using the steam cleaner on them.

Choosing a Vacuum for Car Floor Mats

A car floor mat vacuum should be lightweight, powerful enough to remove debris, dust, and hair from the inside of your vehicle.

Cherylon Car Vacuum has a strong motor that can suck up all the crumbs and other stuff from the floor mats. All the waste, whether wet or dry, gets collected into a 0.5 Liters storage bin.

This comes with a brush that works wonders on the floor pads. Not just this, the Slot pipe cleans up those narrow crevices in the seats, and the Extended Hose and Long tube reach tight corners.

(Video) How to Clean & Restore Rubber Car Floor Mats


Can You Wash Car Floor Mats in the Washing Machine?

Usually, it is best if you do not place your car’s rubber floor mats in the washer. Check the texture and type of the cloth mats before putting them into the washing machine. To prevent damage to your washer, read the machine’s manual.

However, you can soak the Rubber car mats in a tub-like container with soapy water, vinegar, and baking soda to remove the dirt. The Cloth car mats can be washed with just baking soda and water mixture. Use soap for additional washing strength.

Can You Put Car Floor Mats in the Dryer?

Avoid putting your car floor mats in the dryer to prevent damaging both the machine and the mats. It’s advisable to spread the mats in a ventilated place.

Not only is this method safe, but it is also effective in drying your car mats naturally, thereby reducing any possibilities of bad odor.


Regularly cleaning your car’s floor mats plays an essential role in your car’s overall maintenance. Besides, it can make your driving experience pleasant.

(Video) How To Clean Rubber Floor Mats - Return them back to black!

If you don’t have a car vacuum, read our guide on cleaning a car without using a vacuum.



How do you make rubber car mats look like new? ›

Spray the mats with a powerful stream of water to break up and rinse away as much soil as possible. Spray with wheel cleaner or a powerful car wash soap solution. Allow the cleaner to dwell for a few moments but don't let the spray dry on the mats. Scrub each mat with a soft bristle brush.

What is the best thing to clean car floor mats with? ›

Use a hose to blast dirt and debris off your rubber car mats. Or wash your car floor mats using a bucket of warm water and a medium-bristle brush. For stuck-on messes, mix a solution of a few drops of dish soap with warm water, and scrub the mats with that.

How do you clean stubborn car mats? ›

Spray the mat's surface with carpet shampoo, and leave it to sit for a minute. If you don't have carpet shampoo, washing detergent will get it clean. Work the cleaner into the mat using a stiff-bristled brush. Rub with a microfibre cloth, lifting water and dirt.

Can you clean rubber mat with vinegar? ›

Rubber Mats

You can use a variety of cleaners. But, there are different types of rubber. Don't use anything acidic to clean them, like vinegar. It will eat through the mat and cause it to degrade faster.

How do you rejuvenate a rubber floor? ›

Besides cleaning it daily, undertake deep conditioning once a month to restore the surface to its original condition. For conditioning, you can either use a rubber floor conditioner or mop the surface with a solution of fabric softener and water (1 cup fabric softener in a gallon of water).

Can you clean rubber with vinegar? ›

As a general rule, wherever you find rubber, keep the vinegar away. The vinegar's acid can eat away at rubber just as it does natural stone. Soap and water or a solution of soap and baking soda are the best grime busters for rubber parts.

How do you rejuvenate car mats? ›

Light Dirt:
  1. Step 1: Remove the mats from your car. ...
  2. Step 2: Remove any loose dirt/grime with a vacuum. ...
  3. Step 3: Apply a Fabric Cleaning spray. ...
  4. Step 4: Allow the mats to dry. ...
  5. Step 1: Remove the mats from your car. ...
  6. Step 2: Remove any loose dirt/grime with a vacuum. ...
  7. Step 3: Apply a Fabric Cleaning spray.
Apr 21, 2021

Can I use armor all on floor mats? ›

Mistake #1: Using a Silicone-Based Cleaner

We highly advise against silicone-based cleaners such as Armor All®, Turtle Wax®, etc.

Can you use Dawn dish soap to clean car mats? ›

Scrub with Soap

Squeeze a generous dollop of liquid dish soap into the bucket. Fill the bucket with an inch or two of water to mix with the soap. Dip the soft-bristle brush in the soapy water and then scrub the mats, paying extra attention to any stains and scrubbing in all the grooves.

What is the fastest way to clean car floor mats? ›

Remove the floor mats from the car to avoid water damage to your vehicle's interior. Shake out the mats to dislodge dirt, dust, and debris. Rinse the mats with clean water. Apply a cleanser designed for rubber mats, and gently scrub with a stiff bristle brush to remove additional grime and debris.

Is rubbing alcohol good for cleaning rubber? ›

Use rubbing alcohol for stubborn stickiness.

Although alcohol is an effective cleaner for most kinds of stickiness, you should only use this cleaning agent on rubber occasionally. Dampen a clean rag with alcohol and wipe at sticky areas until they are removed. Rinse the rubber with water afterwards.

Does vinegar damage rubber seals? ›

Vinegar is safe to use on machines made using natural rubber seals and parts constructed from ethylene-propylene, silicone, fluorocarbon, virgin Teflon, and butyl synthetic rubber seals.

Does baking soda clean rubber? ›

Baking soda is a gentle abrasive, so it's safe to use on rubber gaskets. It also has purifying and deodorizing capacities to remove odor in the cap and water bottle. Combine two tablespoons of baking soda and a bit of water until you form a paste. You can also add dish soap as reinforcement.

What should you not clean rubber with? ›

Avoid using paint thinner, WD-40, or any other solvent based cleaners since they're more likely to damage the rubber. Bleach, acidic detergents, and turpentine could leave stains on rubber, so avoid cleaning with them.

How do you bring rubber back to life? ›

Restoring Rubber With Glycerine

Heat up the rubber piece in a pot of boiling water. Pull the rubber out of the boiling water, then dip the cotton wad into some glycerine, and wipe down the rubber item with it. Let it dry for 24 hours, then heat the rubber again and wipe it down with more glycerine.

How do you restore deteriorating rubber? ›

There are also a variety of home remedies for rejuvenating hardened rubber. We've heard of using brake fluid, transmission fluid, and a combination of both—something we strongly discourage. On the other hand, a combination of alcohol and wintergreen oil (3 to 1) is said to work well on rubber parts that can be soaked.

What does baking soda do to rubber? ›

Follow these tips for using baking soda to clean rubber, plastic and wood: A baking-soda paste removes stains from plastic and rubber utensils. Apply the paste with a scouring pad or sponge. You can scrub stained plastic storage containers with a paste of lemon juice and baking soda.

Does WD 40 clean rubber? ›

WD40 contains a mineral (petroleum) spirit as a carrier solvent. The mineral spirit WILL soften and swell natural rubber. It is ok to use on fuel and oil hoses but NOT coolant hoses and definitely not on door and window rubbers!

Does WD 40 damage rubber? ›

WD-40 can be used on just about everything. It is safe for metal, rubber, wood and plastic. WD-40 can be applied to painted metal surfaces without harming the paint. Polycarbonate and clear polystyrene plastic are among the few surfaces on which to avoid using a petroleum-based product like WD-40.

Does Armor All damage rubber? ›

Can I use Armor All® Protectant on rubber? Yes. Armor All® Protectant products are specially designed to protect, clean and shine rubber surfaces. Using Armor All® Protectant regularly is an easy way to help protect your rubber surfaces from cracking, UV damage, fading or discoloration.

What is a good substitute for Armor All? ›

  • 1 cup warm water.
  • 1 cup mineral oil.
  • 1 tbsp distilled white vinegar.
  • 5 drops Melaleuca essential oil.
  • 5 drops Eucalyptus essential oil.
Mar 8, 2019

Can you use Dawn dish soap on WeatherTech floor mats? ›

Use an All Purpose Cleaner (APC)

If you don't have APC, a liquid detergent or dish soap may do. However, WeatherTech advises not to use heavy degreasers or anything stronger than liquid detergents as they may damage floor mats.

Can you use armor all on WeatherTech floor mats? ›

Do not use harsh chemicals or abrasive type cleaners as these products may damage the FloorLiners™ or All-Weather Floor Mats. We do not recommend the use of Armor-All®, Son-of-a-Gun® or any other silicone-based surface treatment, as this will make the surface slippery.

How do you clean WeatherTech mats with Dawn? ›

Add a few drops of mild laundry or dish soap to a bucket and fill it with water. Soak a sponge, cloth, or cleaning brush in the solution. Then scrub both sides of the mat down until it's clean.

Can I use Pine Sol to wash my car? ›

Q: Can I use Pine-Sol® to wash a car? A: We do not recommend using Pine-Sol® to wash a car, as it could damage the car's finish.

Are fabric car mats machine washable? ›

If you don't have a power washer at home, you can usually find them at car washes, and you could power wash your floor mats there. You can also put car floor mats in your washing machine, using your regular detergent.

Can you put fabric car Matts in the washing machine? ›

The only scenario where you might be able to put your mat in the washer is if it is completely fabric. However, even if your mats have no rubber parts, It's always best to check for a label that indicates the material or whether it's machine washable. Luckily, there's plenty of alternative ways to wash your mats.

Can car mats go in the washing machine? ›

Never ever put rubber or plastic car mats in your washing machine.

Can you wash rubber-backed mats in washing machine? ›

You should have no issue using a washing machine to wash your rubber-backed rug, but please remember to check the labels on your rug as some are not suitable for use in a washing machine. We would recommend, if your rug allows it, for you to wash your rubber-backed rug in a washing machine at least every three months.

Are rubber-backed mats machine washable? ›

Some types of rubber-backed matting can be used in the washing machine, however, sizes larger than 60cm x 90cm (Approximately 2ft x 3ft) will be too large for most domestic washing machines.

How do you clean car mats with baking soda? ›

Vacuuming. some baking soda on the floor mat to absorb moisture and foul odor. Let it sit for about 10-20 minutes, and then start vacuuming both sides. Next shake or hit the mats against the ground or any hard surface to remove the deeply embedded dust.

How do you dry car mats after washing? ›

Dry- Let the floor mats dry completely before you put them back into the vehicle. Hang them up or lay them flat to dry in the sun. Dry them somewhere clean, so they do not pick up extra debris if they fall or touch the ground while wet.

How do you clean rubber car mats without a hose? ›

Squeeze a generous dollop of liquid dish soap into the bucket. Fill the bucket with an inch or two of water to mix with the soap. Dip the soft-bristle brush in the soapy water and then scrub the mats, paying extra attention to any stains and scrubbing in all the grooves.


1. Cleaning Dirty Floor Matts (Cloth & Rubber)
(Stoner Car Care)
2. How To Deep Clean Car Mats
(My Supercar Life)
3. How To Clean Car Rubber Floor Mats: Clean & Protect!
(Wilson Auto Detailing)
4. How to CLEAN RUBBER FLOOR MATS!! (Fast & Easy Like a PRO) | Andrea Jean Cleaning
(Andrea Jean Cleaning)
5. How to Clean Car Floor Mats!
(Clean My Space)
6. How To Quickly Clean Your Car Floor Mats! Newbie Detailing Vlog - Chemical Guys
(Chemical Guys)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Jamar Nader

Last Updated: 02/18/2023

Views: 5766

Rating: 4.4 / 5 (75 voted)

Reviews: 82% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Jamar Nader

Birthday: 1995-02-28

Address: Apt. 536 6162 Reichel Greens, Port Zackaryside, CT 22682-9804

Phone: +9958384818317

Job: IT Representative

Hobby: Scrapbooking, Hiking, Hunting, Kite flying, Blacksmithing, Video gaming, Foraging

Introduction: My name is Jamar Nader, I am a fine, shiny, colorful, bright, nice, perfect, curious person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.