car detailing

Car Detailing for a Personal Wheelchair Van

Every car can be a harbor for dirt, grime and all manner of unwanted material (just ask any parent or car owner), and cleaning the visible mess can be challenging enough, but what can you do to protect your vehicle’s surfaces from the invisible enemy of COVID-19?

Even as we practice social distancing and shelter-at-home orders, a trip into town for groceries or a medical need is still necessary on occasion. That’s when surfaces on your vehicle could easily become a harbor for viruses. We’ve gathered tips from Kelly Blue Book and Consumer Reports to help keep your vehicle’s surfaces sanitized and reduce the spread of any virus.

What Products Should I Use to Clean My Car?

If you are fortunate enough to have disinfecting wipes, car experts like them best for interior surfaces of the vehicle because they eliminate bacteria and viruses without damaging materials. Cleaning sprays that contain at least 70 percent alcohol are just as effective. Pair with a roll of paper towels, and you have what you need. Be sure to avoid car cleaners with bleach or hydrogen peroxide, which could damage vinyl and plastics in modern vehicles. For wheelchair vans, pay special attention to the integrated buttons that activate your ramp. As one of the most used areas of the vehicle, you’ll want to clean these after each outing.

What Surfaces Would COVID-19 Live on in My Car?

As we all know, human hands are a prime ‘vehicle’ to transfer viruses from one surface to another. Experts believe COVID-19 is especially hardy and early reports say the virus can live on surfaces for up to five days before dying (learn more about how long COVID-19 lives on different surfaces here). It’s important to wipe down any surface on your accessible vehicle or related driving adaptive equipment that human hands regularly touch, including:

  • Door handles (interior and exterior)
  • Armrests
  • Grab handles
  • Steering wheel
  • Turn signal
  • Gear shifts
  • Adaptive driving equipment
  • Manual ramp handles
  • Wheelchair tie-down restraints
  • Seat belts and buckles
  • Conversion buttons
  • Lock and window buttons
  • Radio and climate control buttons

Tips for Cleaning Your Car to Protect Against COVID-19

Once you’ve identified the proper cleaning product and the surfaces that need critical attention, there are a few more tips that will help ensure your cleaning is effective:

  • Be sure to use a different wipe / paper towel for each surface, otherwise you risk spreading a virus from one surface to the next.
  • Don’t focus just on the driver position; make sure you are equally diligent about cleaning all passenger seats as well.
  • Once finished, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly! There’s a reason experts stress thorough hand-washing in every briefing – it’s the only way to help stop our hands from being vehicles that give a free ride to this deadly virus.

Your BraunAbility Dealer is Taking Extra Precautions1

Should you need to have your accessible vehicle serviced, or if you decide this is a good time to schedule a preventive maintenance appointment at your local BraunAbility dealer, be assured that they’re taking every precaution for your safety as well.

  • No contact, at-home pick-up and delivery of your wheelchair accessible vehicle2
  • Dealer service technician house calls so your vehicle never leaves your property2
  • Adhering to social distancing guidelines at all times  
  • Increased handwashing and wearing gloves  
  • Enhanced sanitation procedures with special attention given to high-touch surfaces

The only guarantee with COVID-19 is that it’s an incredibly dangerous enemy, maybe more-so for people with disabilities. Implementing these cleaning practices regularly will help minimize risk of exposure and prevent its spread. For official recommendations on best sanitization practices, visit the Centers for Disease Control or the World Health Organization.

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