Home DIY Autoblog Details: Clean your car's stereo the right way

Autoblog Details: Clean your car’s stereo the right way

Electrical components in your vehicle are extra sensitive to aggressive cleaning products and excessive liquid being used, especially on touchscreen displays found on many of today’s vehicles. Find out how to clean and maintain those sensitive components on this episode of Autoblog Details. Watch all our Autoblog Details videos for more quick car care tips from professional detailer Larry Kosilla.

Materials used in this video:

Use the right tools for the job

Electrical components in your vehicle are extra-sensitive to aggressive cleaning products and excessive liquids being used, especially on our flatscreen digital displays found in many vehicles today. Here are the items you’ll need for this task. When addressing buttons, switches or knobs, your goal is to avoid dripping any liquid in or behind the plastic, so spraying the area directly could potentially lead to electrical issues down the road.

First, use a soft-bristle interior brush to remove any dust or dirt from in between the movable plastic pieces. Allow the bristles to get in between the switch and the panel while pushing the switch as if it was in use. This will allow the bristles to get deep into the button without introducing any cleaning liquids.

Air care

Compressed air can also be helpful, but can lead to damage if too much pressure is released behind the switch, causing it to fly off. It’s always a good idea to use a can of compressed air, typically used on computers and found in any electronics store. Now that the dust is released from the button’s seams, spray a light mist of plastic cleaner or water on a microfiber towel and gently wipe the top of the buttons. Use a short-hair microfiber towel to help avoid snagging fibers in between the buttons and accidentally pulling them off.

Stay away from harsh chemicals

Likewise, the paint on old buttons can easily be removed with aggressive products such as all-purpose cleaners and terry towels, so be careful. For extremely dirty switches, spray one squirt of plastic cleaner on to the top of your interior brush hairs, quickly wipe them on a microfiber towel and then brush them in between the seams. When the brush hairs become damp, they’re much better at attracting and holding dirt.

Touchscreen love

Finally, for touchscreens, wipe the area with a short-hair microfiber towel, much the same as cleaning reading glasses. However, touch screens are considerably softer than glass, so use minimal pressure to remove fingerprints. Likewise, special touchscreen wipes are also available in any electronics store for on-the-go cleaning. Blowing off a button or removing a label is not uncommon among detailers, so be careful. Much the same as cleaning paint, use the least aggressive technique to get the job done properly.

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