The 6 Best Interior Cleaners for Car Detailing in 2024

The 6 Best Interior Cleaners for Car Detailing in 2024

Cleaning the interior of a vehicle is one of the most important parts of detailing and maintenance. The inside of cars, trucks, and SUVs is where we all inhabit while drive. Whether it is a road trip or your daily commute to the office the interior of a vehicle gets abused and dirty. 

From general dust that is easy to wipe down to coffee spills, food stains, and more the inside of your car is much like the kitchen in your house and needs regular detailing and cleaning to keep it tip top. Choosing the right interior cleaning products can make life easy in your mission to interior cleaning and the wrong ones can ruin your day. We have used countless interior cleaning products over the last 30 years of detailing and have included over 60 in our monthly subscription boxes since 2018. From all of our testing and use these are some of our favorites that do the job well, smell great, or just create a great experience.

What To Look For In An Interior Cleaner

Much like car shampoos, waxes, ceramic coatings, and every other car detailing chemical there are things you need to know before grabbing a bottle. Some of the things we look for in an interior cleaner is the color, scent, and what surfaces it is safe for.

Why does color matter in an interior cleaner?

Well any cleaner that has dyes in it can potentially stain light or white colored materials. This is what me mean by ruining your day as a detailer or car enthusiast. Think about, you are detailing a new Tesla with white interior materials and you grab this new interior cleaner that smells like cherries and is red and that red dye stains the material in the car. Now you might be able to work that stain out but most of the time you are replacing or repairing that damage. To avoid this we prefer to use clear or white interior cleaners. The color might look cool in the bottle but white and clear will help cutdown on issues and headaches that could potentially happen. 

Why does a scent or fragrance of an interior cleaner matter?

Some interior cleaners may have a strong cleaning smell that is amplified inside of the car when you are cleaning it which may not be the best for your own lungs and nostrils let alone your client. Think of a bathroom that someone cleaned with bleach, most people will not be fond of that smell. On the flipside a fruity or synthetic smelling interior cleaner might put off your client as well because let's face it, smells are a personal thing and preference. We prefer interior cleaners that are clean, fresh, and more hotel lobby smelling when we can use one. Our clients' feedback has been that this is more enjoyable and the experience for them in the detail appears to be positive. Another concern is some clients may not want any smell at all so it is a good question to ask because you never know who may be allergic or sensitive to a scent.

What is an interior cleaner safe on?

Using an interior cleaner that is safe for multiple surfaces, materials, plastics, and more is crucial. Today's cars are constantly being produced with new materials, screens, fabrics, and more and insuring that you do not damage anything is important. Having a cleaner that is not meant for Alcantara or infotainment screens is important to know and not something you want to accidentally find out the wrong way. We try and test any cleaner in a small area before we go full bore on a new vehicle or model to cover ourselves and prevent issues. EVs and many new vehicle brands are completely different from the big vehicle brands of the past and should be treated very carefully. The new car brands are experimenting with expensive materials and are not leather or plastics in your normal GMC or Ford that have been around for years. Again, be safe with these new vehicles! Another reason we use dedicated interior cleaners and not diluted APC is because an APC tends to be really strong for leather and other sensitive materials and you can really screw something up if you are not safe.  

Finally, we use dedicated interior cleaners that do not add gloss or sheen. We want a cleaner to clean the interior and then once we get things where we want we will use an interior detailer or interior protectant to add in UV protection or dress things the way we like. Here is our list of some of our current favorite interior cleaners that we believe check all of these boxes for our needs and for our clients.

The Best Interior Cleaners We Have Been Using

This list of interior cleaners is not in any priority and again we are constantly trying new ones but this is list is the ones we find ourselves grabbing often.

GLOVEBOXRx Interior Cleaner 16 Ounces of the best interior cleaner for cars

GLOVEBOXRx Interior Cleaner

Price: $16.99 (Bottle, Sprayer, and 2 Refill Cartridges)

Code: BLOG30 for 30% off at GLOVEBOXDETAIL.COM

Sizes: 16 Ounces

Pros: Formulated by us for the ultimate interior cleaner that smells clean, is clear, and safe on all surfaces including Alcantara, navigation screens, and more. Our refills are affordable and save space and are easy to use. Just add water and insert a cartridge and you are on your way to a clean interior. We use this more and more because it just works and smells sooooo good!

Cons: None

Hyper Cleanse Interior Cleaner 16 Ounces

Lithium Hyper Cleanse

Price: $21.99 to $69.00

Code: GLOVEBOX for 20% off

Sizes: 16 Ounces and 1 Gallon

Pros: Formulated by Lithium to be tough on girt and grime but safe on leather, vinyl, plastics, and fabrics.

Cons: This interior cleaner is quite expensive and could be more cost effective and we do not recommend it on info screens as it has a lot of cleaning power.

The Detail Firm Interior Lather Interior Cleaner 25 Ounce Bottle


The Detail Firm Exterior Lather

Price: $25.00 to $65.00

Code: GLOVEBOX20 for 20% off

Sizes: 25 Ounces and 3L

Pros: This cleaner just gets the job done and smells clean and looks like champagne. Biodegradable and safe on most materials that is enjoyable to use.

Cons: This interior cleaner is quite expensive and could be more cost effective. Some people do not like the wine box style container the 3L package comes in but it is great refilling your bottles. 

Cruise w/Black Sprayer- 16oz. Case - Car Supplies WarehouseShine Supply

Shine Supply Cruise

Price: $18.00 to $56.00

Sizes: 16 Ounces and 1 Gallon

Pros: This is another banger of an interior cleaner. It is absolutely a dynamite cleaner that leaves a matte OEM finish and smells fantastic. 

Cons: A little pricey in smaller sizes but by the gallon and you are going to enjoy it.

Luna Interior Cleaner 16 Ounces

Alchemist Luna Interior Cleaner

Price: $14.95 to $52.85

Sizes: Quart and 1 Gallon

Pros: This is a new brand and interior cleaner on the scene that is making some waves. It is free from dyes and scents and foams nicely.

Cons: Should not be used on screens.

Typhon Interior Cleaner 16 Ounces

Phoenix EOD Typhon Interior Cleaner & Odor Neutralizer

Price: $8.49 to $54.99

Code: GLOVEBOX10 for 10% off

Sizes: 8 Ounces, 16 Ounces, 32 Ounces, and 1 Gallon (RTU & Concentrates Available)

Pros: Great cleaning product that is available ready to use and in concentrates. Safe on most materials and surfaces.

Cons: None

How Often Should You Clean Your Car's Interior

We believe cleaning your interior once per month is a good maintenance schedule for your vehicle. It will allow you to keep up with dirt, dust, finger prints, and other mishaps more efficiently and with less effort. If you are a detailer we recommend discussing an interior cleaning schedule with your clients so you are not getting disaster details all of the time. A maintenance plan for your clients will make you life easier and more cost effective for both parties.

Do Interior Cleaners Work on Glass? 

Yes, some interior cleaning products will work on glass but check the manufacturers label and website for that information. If you cannot find it you may want to test the interior cleaner in a small spot to see how it works but we shy away from it as you can damage tint if you are not careful. Most detail products for interiors will clearly say what surfaces you can use the product on so be safe and read the label.

What Car Interior Cleaners do Pros Use?

We detail cars for many clients and car collections and the list above is what we trust everyday. We also maintain and clean our own vehicles with these products and while we may substitute once in a while these are always in our arsenals. If you are want to save money we recommend concentrates or our GLOVEBOXRx cartridges because they are effective but more affordable than buying 16 ounce bottles all of the time. No matter which one of these you choose you will be happy you picked one of these interior cleaners!