Snow may be pretty to look at, but the salt used to make roads less slippery presents another story in your vehicle. Furthermore, snow already has its own salt content, which adds to the issue. The salt leaves behind a sticky white residue on the carpet. Luckily, you can remove the salt stains yourself by following these tips.

Prepare to Clean Salt Stains

Gather the following supplies: 

  • sponges or scrub brush
  • soft rags 
  • soft towel
  • bucket
  • spray bottle
  • vacuum
  • white vinegar
  • carpet shampoo or foam carpet cleaner

You may prefer to clean removable floor mats separately outside, Give them a good shake to help remove some of the salt.

If you don't have mats, it is a goods time to invest in them. Some salt could still accumulate on the carpet edges, but the mat reduces the amount of stain. 

Clean with Shampoo or Foam Carpet Cleaner

Vacuum the carpet to remove as much of the stain as possible. If the floor is very wet, use a wet/dry vacuum. To pre-treat the stain, hold a damp cloth or sponge over the area for several seconds.

Foam carpet cleaners often come with brush attachments, otherwise use a scrub brush or sponge. Spray the foam on the mats and all over the carpet area, and scrub gently to help move the salt onto the surface. Allow the cleaner to dry according to directions, then vacuum.

Alternately, mix a small amount of shampoo in a gallon of warm water. Dip a sponge or brush in the mixture, and scrub the carpet and mats.

Let the shampoo stand on the carpet and mats for several minutes, then blot with cool water to rinse the soap, or run a wet/dry vacuum over the area. Avoid getting liquid on electrical connections, repeating one or both methods if needed.

Apply Vinegar

Fill a spray bottle halfway with warm water and half vinegar. Vinegar has a smell, but it is powerful for removing salt stains. Vinegar smells usually subside after the area dries.

Mist the carpet with the vinegar solution, then let it sit for fifteen minutes. While you wait, proceed to mist the mats. Use a towel or rag to blot the stain. Repeat the procedure until the stain has been removed, using fresh towels or rags as needed. 

Rinse using cool water, and let it dry. If possible, hang floor mats to prevent mildew from forming on the carpet, and roll down windows to speed drying. Contact companies like A&G Auto Spa & Mobile Detailing for more information.