How to Clean Rubber Car Mats

Cleaning the dried mud and spilled coffee off your rubber car mats is quick and easy with a high-pressure garden hose and a squeeze of dish soap.

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How to clean rubber car mats
Photo: Veronica Graham /

How to clean rubber car mats, step by step

Rubber car mats may not be as attractive as cloth mats, but they’re a lot easier to clean. A highly pressurized garden hose will do the heavy lifting, and you can use that bottle of soap by your kitchen sink to erase the memory of winter salt and spring mud.

Cleaning rubber mats too often or with harsh soaps will actually wear them out sooner than your own feet, but a simple cleaning once a year will help the mats protect the carpeting underneath.

What you’ll need to clean rubber car mats:

  • Vacuum. A household vacuum that can reach into crevices is best.
  • High-pressure garden hose nozzle.
  • Soft-bristle brush. A handheld utility brush has a comfortable grip so you can really attack tough stains.
  • Bucket.
  • Mild dish soap.
  • Optional: You can add a scoop of baking soda to your soap-and-water mixture if your mats are extra-dirty.
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Step 1: spray the rubber car mats
Photo: Veronica Graham /

Step 1: Spray the Mats

  • Take all of the mats out of the car and lay them on a flat surface.
  • Vacuum the floor carpet underneath the mats.
  • Spray the mats with the hose with the high pressure nozzle on a jet stream setting to remove dirt, dust and hard particles.
  • Give the mats a shake after spraying.

You might also need these tips to remove salt stains as required.

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Step 3: Scrub With Soap
Photo: Veronica Graham /

Step 2: 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.

Find out more car cleaning tricks pro washers won’t tell you.

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Step 3: Rinse the mats
Photo: Veronica Graham /

Step 3: Rinse the Mats

  • Spray the mats again with the high-pressure garden hose to rinse away the soap.
  • Let the mats air dry completely by laying them flat in full sunshine or hanging them over a railing.
  • Re-install the clean mats.

Next, check out 13 cleaning hacks that take the hassle out of housekeeping.

The Family Handyman
Originally Published on The Family Handyman

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