As coronavirus spreads across the country and more confirmed cases of COVID-19 pop up, it has us thinking about how we can stay safe during this pandemic. There’s plenty of information out there about how to stay safe from the virus at home, but what about in your car? Here is some modern car technology that is helping to keep car interiors clean with good air quality. As a quick note, we’re not guaranteeing that any of these technologies will prevent coronavirus infection, but they may help reduce your risk.
If you’re curious about whether HEPA filtration is a good solution for keeping coronavirus out of your car, you can read more about HEPA filtration here.
Most car foggers that circulate through your car’s ventilation system are just for eliminating odors. However, there are some foggers out there that kill germs and disinfect the air in your car. These might be hard to come by (especially in the middle of a pandemic) so if you can’t find any, a household disinfectant spray is a good alternative to use in your car.
Also, wiping down everything you touch in your car regularly with disinfecting wipes, especially the steering wheel and radio controls, is a good practice. Read your owner’s manual to be sure these kinds of wipes won’t harm the finish in your car. Often, repeated use of bleach wipes is what will harm your car more so than just doing it once or twice. Still, read the manual to be sure.
Available as single kits or in bulk, RideKleen’s PureProtect kit can sanitize and disinfect a vehicle in 10 minutes or less. The do-it-yourself kit includes not only the cleaner, but a disinfectant bottle, microfiber cloth, latex gloves, face mask, and hand sanitizer as well. But this is more than just a cleaning kit, it’s a solution for someone selling their individual car or enterprise solution for fleets and dealerships. The residual effect of the treatment inhibits the growth of mold, mildew, and odor-causing germs for up to 30 days after treatment. The kit helps clean the vehicle’s interior, cargo area, A/C, and ventilation system and is approved for use on hard surfaces killing up to 99.9 percent of germs, bacteria, mold, mildew, and emerging viruses.
Single-use kits are $15.00
High volume users can buy in bulk and even purchase in-vehicle signs, outdoor banners, and window stickers to help communicate to customers the cleanliness of a vehicle that’s for sale. (RideKleen is a Cox Automotive brand which also owns Autotrader).
The use of ultraviolet light to sterilize the air is nothing new, and it’s a method used by hospitals to help keep rooms clean where air quality is very important. Unless you count ambulances, this isn’t something we’ve seen applied to production cars yet, but there’s some promising technology in development that could make the air in our cars much cleaner.
About a year ago, Jaguar Land Rover announced that it is developing UV-C technology in an effort to make the air in its cars cleaner and stop the spread of colds, flu and “superbugs.” The idea is the same as the technology that hospitals use, but on the road where we spend a lot of our time. This technology hasn’t been introduced in any Jaguar Land Rover production models yet, but we’re wondering if the spread of coronavirus will prompt JLR to put this technology into production sooner than they originally planned.
You can also get a hand-held UV wand to pass over surfaces. They typically cost about $30 to $100. You may even want to consider bringing one of these with you if you’re using a ride share service or public transportation.
The products and technologies, when used together, can go a long way toward improving the air quality in your car and avoiding harmful viruses. As for the coronavirus specifically, keep an eye on the news and follow the guidelines laid out by the CDC, the WHO and your local health authorities to protect yourself and your family from getting sick.
Here are some other ways you can disinfect your car during the coronavirus pandemic.
Looking for more info relating to you, your vehicle, and the COVID-19 pandemic? Check out more of Autotrader’s Coronavirus content.