Our vehicles can be like our homes away from home sometimes. We eat meals in them, talk on the phone in them, have our pets in them, and oftentimes spend hours of our day in them.
And like our homes, cars and trucks and vans often get messy. Really messy.
Look at how much dust and debris and hair can accumulate in the carpets in your house, and then take a look at your car – it’s like a smaller version of your home that is completely covered in carpet.
We bring all sorts of sand and dirt and everything else we step in into our cars. When we roll down the windows to feel the breeze, we also suck in that many miles-per-hour worth of dust and pollen and whatever else is in the air.
And that’s not even bringing up the disaster that having pets in the car can cause!
They don’t even have to be dirty – their hair by itself is more than enough…especially when you haven’t cleaned it and you sit down all dressed to go out in a pile of clingy fur.
What’s the Best Way to Clean It, Then?
It makes sense, then, to have the easiest, most convenient way to clean the car. There are some options:
- Sweeping with a broom? Unfortunately, it simply won’t work very well – it won’t quite be like sweeping carpet in the home, but it’ll be an annoyingly close second.
- Wall-mounted car vacuum? That could be an okay option…assuming you want to deal with installing it on the wall, and only being able to clean your car at home.
- Upright vacuums? Another okay option…if you have no other options, that is. If that’s the case, get started on untangling the extension cord and lugging the vacuum out to your car.
No, cleaning the car is a job best handled by a cordless handheld vacuum.
- A cordless handheld is already one step ahead of a broom in being able to clean upholstery and carpet. It’s also much faster simply since a vacuum can suck up dirt instead of pushing it around
- They are also more versatile than a wall-mounted vacuum – a handheld can be carried in your trunk, ready to spot-clean to get your car ready for guests or a hot date
- And handhelds are much more maneuverable than any other kind of vacuum. You’ll be able to reach and clean every part of your car without straining your back or stretching a hose or scratching and denting anything.
Choosing a Cordless Handheld for your Car
To get the most effective vehicle cleaning out of your handheld, look for a few specific things:
- A lithium-ion battery. It’ll have a longer runtime so it won’t quit on you halfway through cleaning your backseat, and in the long run won’t lose its effectiveness like other kinds of batteries. This is especially important because cleaning a car can take longer than the small messes for which handhelds are usually used. It also won’t lose its charge as much if you’re storing it in your trunk.
- Power is also important because it’s easy to track some pretty big debris into the car, like gravel or plant bits. Pet hair can require a lot of power to clean as well, so look for a handheld with plenty of volts.
- Attachments help complement a handheld’s versatility. A narrow nozzle makes getting into the many, many crevices in a car a piece of cake (just imagine trying to clean out the crack between your seat and the console!), and different kinds of brushes can help with both delicate surfaces you don’t want to scratch and with scrubbing off pet hair.
The Best Cordless Handheld Vacuum for Cars
There’s one option that’s far and beyond all others: the Black and Decker Platinum 20-Volt Cordless Handheld. Take a look at what it features:
- the essential lithium-ion battery for a long run-time, with a smart charging base that only charges it when necessary
- 20-Volt power, which rivals many cordless stick vacuums
- a rotating, narrow nozzle to ensure both maneuverability and the concentration of its sucking power
- integrated crevice tool to make sure you can get into every crevice and crack
- flip-up brush tool to deal with stubborn hair
- see-through dust container that is easy to remove and clean
- a three-year warranty
This vacuum is the best choice for cleaning cars on practically every level. Cleaning the car can be a daunting task that seems to keep coming up over and over…with a tool like the Platinum 20-Volt, though, you’ll easily blast through it every time.
Another great option if you have pets is the Hoover Platinum LiNX Pet Cordless Handheld Vacuum. It includes a pet upholstery tool with a brushroll, something that’s rare on a handheld.
Both of these vacuums are a little pricey, but will do a more thorough job by far than cheaper vacuums.
If your budget is smaller, consider one of Black & Decker’s cheaper Dustbusters. Keep in mind, however, that their suction power will be lower and they’ll have a tough time removing pet hair.