For some people, cleaning their car is a dreaded chore, while for others it’s a relaxing and enjoyable activity – but like it or not, it’s something we all have to do. One thing that makes it easier is having the right equipment – so here are our picks for the best car vacuum cleaner.
The Best Car Vacuum Cleaner on the market of 2020
1. BLACK+DECKER BDH2000L Cordless Hand Car Vacuum
If you’re thinking about buying a new vacuum cleaner for your car or for other use and you are willing to pay a little extra for a product from one of the most established and well-known brands, this rechargeable battery-powered Black+Decker could be just what you’re looking for.
It is light and compact, making it ideal for car use. Its lithium-ion integral battery features a “no memory” effect for extra-long life and is also capable of holding its charge for up to 18 months, meaning it will be charged and ready whenever you need to clean your car.
It uses a cyclonic action to keep the filter clean and the power strong. The suction strength is good, and it also features a translucent dirt bowl, making it easy to see when it needs to be emptied.
Emptying is easy – it takes just one mess-free step. The parts are also simple to clean – you only need to wash them under running water.
Another adaptation that makes it perfect for use in your car is the slim nozzle, which, along with the extendable crevice tool, makes it ideal for cleaning hard-to-reach places.
Although perhaps a little more expensive than vacuums by lesser-known brands, the performance of this Black+Decker model make it good value for money.
2. ThisWorx for TWC-01 Car Vacuum
View on Amazon (Our Top Pick)
If you need a dedicated car vacuum cleaner, this lightweight model for both wet and dry cleaning from ThisWorx could be an ideal pick.
This vacuum is powered from the car cigarette lighter, and its 106-watt motor and metal turbine offer strong suction power.
It includes a 16ft cord, making it easy to reach everywhere inside your car. It also includes three different nozzles, ensuring you can attain even the most awkward corners of your vehicle.
It features a well-designed trash container with a special lid that makes sure everything you suck up stays inside where it belongs. The trash container itself has a generous volume, meaning you won’t have to empty it so often; it is transparent so you can easily tell when it becomes full.
The HEPA filter is washable, and the vacuum also comes with a special cleaning brush to make maintenance of the vacuum cleaner even easier and hassle-free. It is also supplied with a special storage bag to help make sure you don’t lose any of the removable parts.
All in all, this is a great option if you want a lightweight but powerful corded vacuum cleaner that is also very reasonably priced. A recommended choice.
3. HOTOR Corded Car Vacuum Cleaner
This is another very handy small-sized corded vacuum cleaner that is powered from the in-car cigarette lighter. Its 16.4ft cord will allow you to easily reach into even the furthest corner of a large car or SUV.
It offers a good level of suction power and can be used for either wet or dry cleaning. It also includes a durable metal HEPA filter that can be washed under running water – meaning it will last much longer than traditional paper filters. If it breaks, you receive a free replacement – for life.
The dust cap is detachable, and the vacuum is quick, easy and mess-free to empty. It also comes with three separate detachable nozzles to help you clean even the hardest-to-reach crevices in your vehicle.
One of the best features on this vacuum cleaner is the powerful LED that illuminates dark corners, meaning you can use it to clean parts of the car that are hard to see, or you can even use it at night.
Overall, another good option. It is very affordable, does its job well – and we love the addition of the LED for added visibility
4. Holife Cordless Handheld Vacuum Cleaner
Here is another top pick for a multifunction handheld cordless vacuum cleaner that would be ideal for use in your car as well as in your home. It offers a powerful and stable 6KPA cyclonic suction that picks up 99.99% of unseen particles and allergens.
It includes several removable attachments, making it ideal for a variety of different situations. The big suction mouth is ideal for dry mess, while the rubber jar tool makes it perfect for cleaning up to 100ml of liquid too.
The crevice tool will allow you to clean difficult-to-reach parts of your car, while the brush attachment makes cleaning up dog or cat hair much easier – ideal for those who often take their pets in their car.
This vacuum cleaner is lightweight and portable. It has a long-life lithium battery that allows the vacuum cleaner to run continuously for up to 30 minutes off a single charge. A full charge only takes between three and four hours.
This machine is slightly more expensive than some of the most low-cost options, but it represents great value for money. If you want a reliable and powerful cordless vacuum cleaner for your car or anything else, this one comes highly recommended.
5. LOVIN PRODUCT Black Portable Handheld Car Vacuum Cleaner
This corded car vacuum cleaner is one of the least expensive available. If you’re looking for a budget option that is still capable of performing well, this could be worth a look.
It is small and lightweight, with dimensions of 14.2” x 5.1” x 4.5” and weighing only 1.44lbs. The high-performance motor offers a decent level of power and can be used to suck up crumbs, sand, dust, cigarette ash or even liquids.
It comes with a selection of three different tools to help you clean in different areas of your car. There is a long mouth attachment, a brush and a soft long tube, enabling you to effectively clean any hard-to-reach areas. The 15ft cable also ensures no part of your car of even large SV is out of reach.
This machine accepts high-efficiency HEPA filters – and two are supplied with the unit. It is also quick and easy to empty, meaning you won’t have to get your hands dirty when it fills up. It comes with a bag to keep everything together to help make sure you don’t lose anything.
The biggest plus point about this vacuum cleaner is the price – it’s just about as cheap as you can find. However, that doesn’t mean that it won’t do a good job, and you can rely on this vacuum to help keep your car clean. A good budget pick.
6. Helteko Car Vacuum Cleaner
This is another inexpensive corded car vacuum cleaner that nevertheless offers high levels of performance for the low price.
It is powered from the car cigarette lighter and has a long 16.5ft cord that allows you to reach even the furthest, most inaccessible corners of the largest vehicles – it is recommended to leave the engine running while you vacuum for the best results.
It offers high-powered suction and can be used to clean wet or dry mess. It features a double filter, has a large capacity and is super-easy to empty and clean.
It comes with three useful accessories that ensure you can reach even the most awkward of places in your vehicle. It also features a bright LED, making it extra-practical for cleaning places that are harder to see. It includes a storage bag to help keep everything together.
It is tough and durable, so it should last a long time – and it includes an 18-month warranty in case anything goes wrong.
7. Baronage Corded Portable Auto Car Vacuum
This corded vacuum cleaner from Baronage is inexpensive yet powerful and reliable. Its upgraded motor offers 4500pa of suction, allowing it to pick up all kinds of dust, gravel, debris and pet hair. It can also be used to suck up liquid spills.
The cord is a generous 16.4ft, allowing you to reach all corners of even SUVs or larger. The accessories like the elastic hose and the nozzle set also make it particularly practical for reaching the hard-to-access parts of your vehicle.
It benefits from sturdy construction, incorporating an aluminum alloy fan. It uses HEPA filters, meaning it is capable of sucking up over 99% of allergens.
It is so simple to use that even your kids can do the cleaning – and it comes with a 30-day money back guarantee and a one-year warranty in case you decide you don’t like it or if it breaks down.
8. FORTEM THE EXTRA MILE Silver Car Vacuum Cleaner
This handheld corded vacuum is another great option at the lowest end of the price range. If you are looking for a reliable and powerful unit that will cost you next to nothing but will do the job it’s designed for, this is another recommended choice.
It is powered from the cigarette lighter in your car and features a 16ft cord that will allow you to reach anywhere in your vehicle. Its small size and weight also make it an extremely practical vacuum cleaner – it has dimensions of 15” x 4.8” x 5.5” and weighs in at only 1.76lbs.
It comes with three separate nozzle attachments, including a brush for cleaning the upholstery. There is also a hose attachment, which is ideal for cleaning under your seats and any other hard-to-reach places.
It features a washable steel HEPA filter and can suck up all dirt, hair, debris, leaves gravel and even liquid. It is a great pick for those with allergies since it also sucks up the microscopic allergens that are invisible to the naked eye.
Overall, an excellent option for a low-cost car vacuum cleaner.
9. RYTEK Car Vacuum Cleaner High Power
Here, we have another good option for a high-quality corded car vacuum cleaner with a low price tag. It runs off your car cigarette lighter and gives high-power suction – the manufacturer claims, slightly bizarrely, that it has the power to suck up three iPhones!
At only 2.75lbs, it is very lightweight, meaning you won’t end up with aching arms after using it to clean out your car. The cord is 16.4ft long, allowing you to reach even the trickiest parts of your vehicle.
It also includes three useful attachments, which also help. There is a brush for the upholstery, as well as a long soft tube and a long mouth attachment.
It comes with two HEPA filters and is extremely easy to empty and clean when the time comes, making it extremely simple and convenient to use. It also has a bag for easy storage.
Whether you need a vacuum for your car or even to give as a gift, this could be the perfect solution.
10. Homasy Portable Handheld Car Vacuum Cleaner
This is a high-performance battery-powered car vacuum cleaner that is ideal if you don’t want to be encumbered by a model with a cord that needs to be plugged in.
It features a high-efficiency lithium battery that lasts for up to 30 minutes of continuous cleaning – the longest in the industry, according to the manufacturer. It can fully charge in about three to four hours and will give you at least 500 uses and five years of service, more than many other models.
The 100-watt motor gives exceptional sucking power, and this machine will be able to suck up pet hair, debris and allergenic microscopic dust down to 0.3 microns. It can also be used to clean up liquid spills. It also has a large 600ml dirt container, allowing you to clean for longer.
This is a good option for anyone looking for a battery-powered car vacuum that is built to last and that will make cleaning the inside of their car easier. Another recommended option.
A good vacuum cleaner helps make cleaning easier
As we said, everyone needs to clean their car – there’s nothing worse than getting into a vehicle that’s full of dirt, debris or pet hair. If you want to make the task easier and ensure you can always do a good job, you need a good vacuum cleaner – and any of these would be an ideal choice.
The Guide to Clean Your Interior
Providing you have the spare time (4 to 8 hours), a lot of patience, and the right supplies, detailing your vehicle’s interior can be a rewarding experience. For what it costs for a single visit to a professional detailer (Not Cheap) you can easily pay for most of the equipment and supplies you’ll need. If your vehicle is especially dirty inside or has never been detailed before, give yourself even more time.
Hardware You’ll Need
You’ll need a wet & dry vacuum cleaner with an extra long hose and a small-crevice tool attachment; lots of clean rags (some thin shop rags, some cotton pillowcases, and some thicker terry washcloths); two different-sized cleaning brushes (large one for your carpets; small one for your seats and upholstery); a small natural-bristle pastry brush or detailing brush (about 3/4″ diameter); a small plastic knife (available free at any fast food outlet); a couple of old toothbrushes; and a couple of new empty spray bottles (used to mix solutions).
Where To Buy Your Cleaning Products
I strongly recommend that you not buy the cheapest chemicals and cleaning products you can find. I buy my detailing supplies by the gallon at a local car-dealer supply store. Look in the phone book and call ahead, as a few of them don’t sell to retail customers. If you go to a retailer like Pep Boys, stick with brand-name products such as those available from Castle, Meguires, Eagle One, Lexol, or Mother’s.
Products You’ll Need
You’ll need a good all-purpose non-silicone vinyl and upholstery shampoo; dry-cleaning fluid or spot cleaner; a silicone-base interior protectant (preferably non-glossy); a leather dressing preparation (if you have a leather interior); and a good automotive glass cleaner. (Avoid ammonia-based tinted household glass cleaners as they can dry out the plastic, rubber, & vinyl surfaces – I prefer hot water mixed with a small amount (20 to 1 ratio) of car-wash liquid.)
Now is the time to clean your door jambs and sill plates (the area between the exterior of the car and the interior of the car). Use the same (non-detergent) car-washing solution that you would normally wash your car with.
Opening the door wide, take a clean rag soaked in the solution and thoroughly clean around the door opening. Do the same for the edges of the doors, cleaning all of the areas you can’t see when the door is closed. When done take a dry rag and wipe the inner door and door sills dry.
Once the door jambs are clean and dry you can apply wax to them, just as if you were waxing the exterior of your vehicle. Remember to keep the wax away from rubber seals and trim pieces, as it’s almost impossible to remove once it dries.
Finally, take a pointed object like a small screwdriver or knitting needle and open the drain holes on the bottom of each car door. There are usually a few holes along the bottom of each door that let the rainwater out (water leaks down the outside of the windows into the doors). When these holes become plugged, they trap water inside the door, causing the doors to rust out from the inside.
First, remove all of your possessions and trash from the vehicle. I suggest putting the non-trash items in a large box for safekeeping. Don’t forget your side pockets, ashtrays, and storage compartments.
Remove your floor mats and start vacuuming everything: seats and seat crevices first, then the floor. Make sure to get underneath the seats, in between seats and center console, and inside ashtrays and side pockets.
If you can remove the seats (minivans & SUVs) or seat cushions it will make the job much easier. You’ll be surprised how much junk accumulates underneath the back seat, especially if you have children.
To clean your floor mats, place them in a washtub, soak them with your carpet-cleaning solution, then thoroughly scrub them with a stiff brush. Rinse them off with water until the runoff is clear, then vacuum them with your wet & dry vac. Dry them in the sun if possible.
After your vacuuming is complete, you can decide the best way to clean your seats and carpets. Lightly-used carpeting and upholstery can be easily cleaned using an interior shampoo and a soft scrubbing brush. The same holds true for seat belts and shoulder harnesses.
For vinyl seats, try a warm, damp rag first. If they still look dirty try some mild scrubbing with a rag soaked in shampoo. Leather seats should be cleaned and conditioned regularly, every two to three months, with a specialized leather-cleaner and dressing (most pros use Lexol).
Use dry-cleaning fluids and spot-removers sparingly: some fluids can slightly discolor your upholstery, so always test them on a small spot first. Important: Use separate brushes for cleaning upholstery and carpets, because carpets are so much dirtier.
If you have gone through a winter in the salt belt, you’ll find salt embedded in your carpeting. First, use a stiff bristle or wire brush to break up the deposits, then vacuum again. If deposits remain, wetting them with water followed by substantial brush-scrubbing usually removes them.
Grease and dirt stains must be removed by applying a strong detergent, scrubbing, and then vacuuming with your wet & dry vac.
The smells associated with mildew, children, and pet accidents can usually be masked by a thorough shampooing followed by an odor-eliminating spray.
Beware: some stains and odors will not go away no matter what you do, in particular, baby smell, barnyard odors, cigarette and cigar odors, and my favorite – “essence of dog.” Dog hair, like dog odor, can be very difficult to remove. After a thorough vacuuming, I go over affected areas with the adhesive side of very wide (2″) masking tape wrapped around my hand.
This removes most of the offending hair; with persistence and new pieces of tape, you should be able to get it all.
Professional detailers commonly paint discolored carpeting with color-matched carpet dye (available at your detailing supplier).
Horrible smells caused by water damage or large holes caused by cigarette burns or wear indicate that the carpeting will need to be replaced – a fairly involved process that you might be able to do yourself if you have mechanic’s tools (the seat belts and seats must be removed along with the carpeting).
Next, come to the door panels. Take a clean rag moistened with your car-washing solution and thoroughly clean all the interior surfaces of the door panel. Pay special attention to crevices where dirt and dust accumulate.
Clean the dust and grime on and around switch assemblies using a damp (not wet) toothbrush and a cloth-wrapped plastic knife (constantly move the cloth around the edge of the knife to avoid scratches as the knife cuts the cloth). Make sure not to drip any liquids into switch assemblies, as the moisture could cause the switches to fail or short circuit.
Cleaning the interior glass surfaces comes next. Do not use household glass cleaners as the ammonia tends to dry out rubber and vinyl surfaces. I suggest a clean rag dampened with a solution of hot water and a small amount of car-wash solution (20 to 1).
Dry the windows with some old clean pillowcases (they leave very little lint behind). Castle makes a nice foam glass cleaner which also yields good results (just be careful not to get any foam on the dash because of the drying effect).
Dashboard & Steering Column
First, clean off the dirt and dust from the top of the dash using a damp cloth. Carefully use the pastry brush or detailing brush (dry) to get dust out of crevices such as AC vents and panel joints. Switches can be cleaned using your toothbrush and cloth-wrapped plastic knife combination.
Remember to keep the toothbrush and rags damp, not dripping. The same procedure can be used for your steering column and control stalks. If your vehicle has a center console, now is the time to clean that as well. Annoying scratches in clear plastic dash lenses (instrument cluster, radio faces) can be removed (actually masked) by using clear plastic polishes or baby oil.
Finish the dash and non-upholstered, non-glass interior surfaces with a silicone-free UV-blocking interior dressing in order to prevent cracking and fading. Although Armor-all is probably the most popular interior protectant sold today, it is silicone-based and shiny, which can cause sun and headlight glare problems when used on top of the dash.
In addition, it leaves a slimy film on everything it touches (including your hands & clothes), and overspray is difficult to remove from window glass. Look for a matte finish, non-silicone, UV-blocking vinyl dressing instead.