For many contractors across the country, especially those who work outside, spring is the time of year when business picks up again. A messy work truck can negatively impact many things, as your mood, your productivity, and your image can hinge on the cleanliness of your truck.
Before your workdays start getting busier, go through some of the tasks on our spring cleaning checklist for your work truck and ensure that you set yourself and your business up for success this year. Treat your truck the same way you’d treat an office, and you’ll feel right at home as you drive from each job.
Declutter Your Interior
The first step to cleaning your work truck is to clean up the clutter you may have scattered around the interior of the vehicle. Such gubbins may include documents, receipts, equipment, and packaging, which you can either file away or throw out. Check the glovebox along with any other storage areas in the truck where there could be outdated paper clutter or any amount of trash.
If you don’t keep any clutter in your contractor vehicle, consider going through any equipment you store in the truck and making sure that it’s all still relevant and functional. A device or tool that you’ve replaced with a different one will only take up precious space in your cabin or toolbox. Broken equipment doesn’t belong in the truck; properly dispose of it or repair it if it’s salvageable.
Get Rid of Bad Smells
Bad smells can happen in any vehicle, but if they sprout up in your work truck, they’ll put you in a sour mood as you drive. Before you settle on refreshing the interior with an air freshener, it’s important to discern the origin of the smell. While cleaning an odor that stems from a stain, messy floors, or food lost below the seats may be easy, a smell that comes from the air blowing out of the vents is more difficult to fix.
A foul odor stemming from the vents could signal an issue with the vehicle’s overall health. You only need to replace the air filter if there’s a dusty, dirty smell. These odors coming from the vents require your immediate attention, and may even prevent you from driving the vehicle:
- – Musty, dank, “locker room” smell: Potential mold issue.
- – Sweet, sickening: Anti-freeze leak.
- – Fuel, unusually strong exhaust smell: Fuel leak.
- – Rotten: Potential dead animal or animal excrement under the hood or inside the vehicle.
If you have reason to believe that there’s a leak and the odor is blowing through your vents, take the vehicle to a mechanic immediately, and make sure to keep the windows open as you drive to prevent poisoning yourself. To prevent the threat of an animal dying under your hood, park in a garage and loudly hit the hood of your truck before starting it.
Vacuum Your Floor and Wash Your Floormats
Depending on your line of work, your floors experience mud, dirt, salt, and any other messy material your boots trek through during the average workweek. The same grime that gets caked onto your boots works its way into your work truck’s carpet, so it’s important to clean it up while it’s easy rather than months after it has stained your floors. Vacuum any loose, dry debris and scrub the floormats with either soap and water for rubber or a car carpet shampoo for carpet mats. Take the mats out and hang them up to dry.
Installing weatherproof floormats on the floor of your work truck is essential for contractors with messy jobs. Cleaning a sturdy, protective floormat is easier than scrubbing the original floormats of the vehicle.
Clean Your Seats or Seat Covers
Spring cleaning is the perfect opportunity to finally take care of any stains or grime on your truck’s seats. Much like how you cleaned your floormats, take a vacuum to the seats to take care of any dry debris before you clean them. If you have cloth seats, you can use a diluted upholstery cleaning solution to clean them. Pre-treat stains by scrubbing them with a small dose of the upholstery cleaner before you spray the rest of the seat.
The most foolproof way to prevent damage or stains on your original seating is with protective seat covers. Seat covers are easier to clean than the original seating and keep your seats safe from debris and aging. By installing Fia custom seat protectors in your work truck, you’ll add comfort and style to your truck’s cabin while protecting the seats from wearing out due to sun or regular usage.
Wash Your Truck
Beautiful spring weather is the perfect time for an intensive, detailed car wash. The most important and final step in this spring cleaning checklist for your work truck is to give it a thorough washing. Because your contractor vehicle may have wraps or decals, washing the truck by hand will give you the best results. Pick a car washing soap that is safe to use on the material of your decals—you’ll likely want to look for soap that can be used on vinyl.
Only use car washing soap on your truck. Other types of soap may be too harsh for your vehicle and could damage your decals and paint. You’ll also want to pay special attention to these elements as you wash the car:
While your tires may be tough on the road, cleaning them the wrong way can weaken them and cause a shorter lifespan. Tire cleaning detergent is gentle on the rubber and won’t leave any residue behind. Don’t get hasty; take time to scrub each tire one at a time and dry them after finishing.
Wipe Down the Windows
Vehicle windows aren’t as easy to clean and wipe down as the windows in your house—these windows have a thin, transparent layer that protects you from harmful UV rays. Regular window cleaning sprays can be too harsh and damage the protective layer. Purchase or make an auto-friendly window cleaner for the interior windows and use a soft, microfiber cloth to ensure a streak-free clean.
Scrub the Headlights
If you notice your headlights losing effectiveness, you may need to give them a solid cleaning. There are plenty of products that can help remove the fog from your headlights or you can find a DIY method that works for you. You should visibly see a difference in the cleanliness of the headlight as you scrub it and once you turn on the lights as you drive.
Taking your time to give your work truck a thorough cleaning will make the vehicle look as good as new again. It’s important to remain patient as you work, as doing anything too hastily can lead to damaging mistakes.
Make next year’s spring cleaning more efficient by protecting the vehicle from dirt and grime both inside and out. Fia’s lines of customized truck seat covers and bug screens can prevent your vehicle from getting dirty or worn out in the first place. Find the products that best fit your line of work in our collections today!