7 Best Car Carpet Cleaners of 2022
Find the best car carpet cleaner to tackle any stain, substance and smell
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Adding the best car carpet cleaner to your arsenal of car detailing tools is one of the best moves you can make. That’s because car carpets take a serious beating from your feet constantly dragging in dirt, spills, debris and accidents.
What to Consider When Buying Car Carpet Cleaners
The best car carpet cleaners tackle spot cleaning, deep cleaning, mystery stains and funky odors. It’s important to look for products that are safe to use on your car’s fabric upholstery. Spray and squeeze bottle applicators are found on most of the best car cleaning products, though other delivery options exist. No matter which style you choose, make sure you pick a car carpet cleaner that can be wiped, sponged or steam cleaned.
How We Chose the Best Car Carpet Cleaners
As shopping experts, our only job is to help you find a winning product. We start with the research and reporting basics—what products are made of, what they look like and how much they cost—to ensure that we’re only recommending the buys that are worth your time and money. Then, we research the features that speak to the product’s quality, taking advice from industry insiders and subject matter experts on what makes a product a smart value (or worthy of a splurge). Finally, we do the work of combing through user reviews to see how real people interact with the product, and if it stands up to the test.
Best Overall Car Carpet Cleaner
Folex Carpet Spot Remover
Folex reigns supreme for removing vehicle stains with the least amount of effort, which earns it the top spot as best car carpet cleaner. The best-selling Folex Stain Remover gets even the gnarliest messes out of car carpets almost instantly. Just spray it on, gently rub it in and wait. Most stains disappear in just seconds. You don’t even have to rinse!
- Easy-to-use spray and soak formula
- Can be blotted, rubbed, steamed or wet-vacuumed out
- Extremely affordable
- Light, refreshing scent
- Requires extra effort to remove greasy stains
Best Oxygen-Powered Car Carpet Cleaner
Armor All Oxi Magic Spray
Let oxygen do the hard work for you. Armor All’s Oxi Magic cleaner uses the power of effervescence to dissolve dirt, grime and stains. No major scrubbing necessary. Just let the cleaner sit for three to five minutes and then blot with a dry cloth. It’s also one of the best car upholstery cleaners thanks to a no-mess formula that’s easy to apply.
- Uses effervescent oxygen bubbles to lift stains away
- Light, fresh scent
- Affordable price
- Works on upholstered seats and other surfaces
- It has a hard time tackling protein stains, like those found in dog feces
Best Car Carpet Cleaner for Oily Stains
303 Multi-Surface Spray
Have oily, greasy stains to loosen? Try this 303 spray cleaner. It’s your new secret weapon for your absolute worst, oldest stains. Reviewers consistently praise 303 for cutting through things like bacon grease, rust, coffee and saltwater stains in mere minutes.
The formula relies on heavy-duty and industrial-grade surfactants to break up old stains—even fat-based marks. It’s probably the best car carpet cleaner for those who tend to snack and drive, because it’ll even cut through old pizza drippings on cloth car mats.
- Works on tough, oily stains
- Compatible on multiple surfaces
- Takes just minutes to work on even the oldest, most set-in stains
- One of the few products that removes both oil and pigment stains (like pizza sauce)
- Somewhat expensive compared to other car carpet cleaners, but a little goes a long way
Best Car Carpet Cleaning Bundle
Car Guys Super Cleaner
If you need a full overhaul of your car detailing products collection, this Car Guys Super Cleaner gets the job done. It cleans every interior surface except for glass, gently lifting and removing stains from carpets and upholstery.
The included microfiber cloth helps gently loosen old pigments, debris and set-in stains to make even the oldest cars look brand new on the inside. The cloths are solid dupes for the best-selling Chemical Guys microfiber cloths, which we reviewed and loved. Brand enthusiasts also note that Car Guys Super Cleaner won’t discolor fabric, making it a prime choice for expensive and luxury car carpets.
- Sold as a bundle with a microfiber cloth
- Ideal for delicate cloth car mats and seats
- Easy to use
- Moderately priced
- The gentler surfactants in this formula may require extra soaking time for especially difficult stains
Best Value Car Carpet Cleaner
Turtle Wax Power Out
If you’re looking to cut costs without cutting corners, add this budget-friendly (but effective) car carpet cleaner to your cart. Each handy bottle of Turtle Wax Power Out spot-treats and deep cleans one-off stains. You can also give car carpets and mats an overall, more regular cleaning with this formula.
The foaming spray is easier to control when applying to carpets, which helps avoid over-saturation. Plus, there’s no rinsing required. It’s also safe for your car’s fabric upholstery. Bonus: The built-in scrub brush is removable.
- Affordable, all-in-one formula
- Removable built-in scrub brush
- Good for both spot treating and full upholstery cleanings
- If you’re using this to clean an entire car, you’ll need a few bottles
Best Multi-Use Car Carpet Cleaner
Chemical Guys Lightening Fast Extractor
Swiftly tackle all the carpeting you’ve got with Chemical Guys Lightning Fast Carpet and Upholstery Extractor. It handles carpet and upholstery in your car and home, plus it cleans a variety of other items like sofas and sneakers. It’s affordable, works quickly and is the ultimate bundle when paired with Chemical Guys New Car Smell Air Freshener.
There are nearly 15,000 five-star reviews on Amazon, many touting it as a “total game changer.” One reviewer used it to get stains out of their car on the first try and then removed oil from a gray-and-white rug in their home. Keeping a bottle on hand is one of our best car cleaning tricks.
- Compatible with multiple surfaces, including car interiors, sofas, sneakers and more
- Easy to apply and use
- Light, refreshing scent
- Works on many types of stains like oil, pigment and mud
- Some reviewers report disliking the scent, but it smells like new car heaven to us
Best Car Carpet Cleaners for Pet Parents
Rocco & Roxie Stain and Odor Eliminator
An essential cleaning tip for pet owners: Buy this Rocco & Roxie spray to banish protein stains and stinky urine odors. It’s designed to eat up odor-causing matter from your pet’s “organic spills,” instead of just masking the scent with a fragrance, and definitely lives up to its motto: “If it’s gross, it’s gone.”
While it’s marketed as a cleaner for home carpet, we found that it works nicely on car interiors, too. A few spritzes on car carpets lifts old, stinky messes with minimal effort. You can use it with a paper towel, microfiber cloth or one of the best car vacuum cleaners with wet-dry capabilities.
- Designed specifically to tackle pet odors and messes
- Lifts and removes odors rather than masking them
- Works on car carpets, upholstery and inside your home
- Can be blotted, steamed or wet vacuumed out
- Not ideal for greasy or heavily-pigmented stains
What is the best way to clean a car carpet?
Using a car carpet cleaning product is the easiest way to lift stains and odors. If you have cloth car floor mats, you should remove them first. Then apply cleaning products and allow them to soak into the affected areas. Blot, rub, steam or wet vacuum until the dirt and debris are no longer detectable.
Can you use regular carpet cleaner on car carpet?
You can, but car carpets are typically made of sturdier nylon fibers and synthetic polymers that can handle more aggressive surfactants. That means carpet cleaners for your home are typically weaker than car carpet cleaners.
Can you steam clean a car carpet?
Yes, you can steam clean car carpets. This method is especially effective on old, tough and highly-pigmented stains.
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