ProCarReviews is reader-supported. We may earn commission on sales through our links at no extra cost to you. View policies.

Best Car Carpet Cleaner

The Best Car Carpet Cleaner 2020

Using a dedicated car carpet cleaner will allow you to safely tackle stubborn dirt, stains and odors. Most cleaners will use a powerful foaming action to lift the dirt from the bottom up, which provides the carpets with a thorough deep clean.

The best car carpet cleaner is the Chemical Guys Foaming Citrus, which is a high sudsing formula that removes dirt, stains and odors.

There are many car upholstery cleaner products that also clean carpets but a dedicated carpet cleaner is recommended. They have been designed and thoroughly tested upon carpets and interior fabrics in order to achieve the best results.

Car Carpet Cleaner Comparison

Car Carpet CleanerBrush Included?Size(s)
Chemical Guys Foaming CitrusNo4, 16 or 54 oz
Adam's Carpet CleanerNo16, 128 or 640 oz
Lexol E301253000No16.9 oz
Turtle Wax T-244R1Yes18 oz
Meguiar's G9719No19 oz
3D High Foam CleanNo16 oz
Prestone AS345Yes18 oz

The carpets of your car will always become dirty but some dirt can stain or produce a foul odor. Even if you use a car vacuum cleaner, you may not be able to lift the dirt, which is where a dedicated car carpet cleaner becomes very useful.

When tackling very dirty interior fabrics or carpets, it’s advised to also use a steam cleaner for cars to produce the best possible cleaning results.

Below is a list of the best car carpet cleaners that will effectively remove dirt, stains and odors with very little effort required.

The Best Car Carpet Cleaner


1. Chemical Guys Foaming Citrus Carpet Shampoo


The Chemical Guys Foaming Citrus is a highly effective carpet cleaner that also works on other fabrics. Once applied into the carpet, it produces a high sudsing foaming action that lifts both dirt and stains in a matter of minutes.

The brand claims that the formula will not only remove stains and odors from fabrics but it will also prevent new ones in the future.

Other features of the Chemical Guys Foaming Citrus include:

  • Safe for all colors and car fabrics
  • High sudsing foaming action
  • Suitable for carpets, floor mats and seats
  • Removes foul odors and leaves a pleasant scent
  • Returns carpets to a like new look and feel
  • Available in 4, 16 and 64 oz bottles

Restoring your car carpets, floor mats or cloth seats has never been easier with this formula. The Chemical Guys Foaming Citrus is a fast acting foam cleaner that lifts dirt and odors from fabrics. It restores all types and color of carpets back to a like new look and feel.

Check it Out

2. Adam’s Car Carpet Cleaner


Another premium car carpet cleaner is by the Adam’s brand, which is a non foaming, dye and perfume free formula. It’s designed to be sprayed onto the interior fabric and then lightly agitated using a carpet brush.

You are able to use this cleaner upon car carpets, seats, headliners and other interior fabric. Unlike other formulas, it doesn’t require any hard scrubbing to remove dirt or stains.

Other features of the Adam’s Carpet Cleaner include:

  • Safe, non-toxic and hypoallergenic
  • Available in 16, 128 and 640 oz bottles
  • Leaves zero residue
  • Suitable for all types of fabrics
  • Easily removed using a towel
  • Made in the USA
  • 110% satisfaction guarantee

The Adam’s Carpet Cleaner is a highly effective formula that provides instant results with very little effort. Adam’s also offer bulk buy options, which provides the best value for money when used with the reusable spray bottle.

Check it Out

3. Lexol Auto Carpet Deep Cleaner


Lexol are a brand that are known for their leather conditioner for cars but they also produce other products such as this carpet cleaner. They state that it’s designed to lift the toughest of stains and eliminate all odors.

It’s a powerful penetrating formula that is able break down stubborn oil and water based stains in the car or around the house.

Other features of the Lexol Deep Cleaner include:

  • Tackles all types of stains
  • Suitable for multiple other applications
  • Lifts tough stains and odors
  • Easy to use trigger
  • Doesn’t require agitation
  • 16.9 oz bottle

The Lexol Carpet Deep Cleaner is a highly rated formula but it does come with a premium price tag. However, it’s developed by the trusted Lexol brand and is a professional strength formula for tackling tough dirt or stains.

Check it Out

4. Turtle Wax T-244R1 Carpet Cleaner


Turtle Wax are a reputable brand known for their affordable detailing products. The T-244R1 Power Out is their dedicated car carpets and mats cleaner, which has a detachable micro scrub brush for agitating the formula.

As well as providing a deep clean to the carpets or mats, the formula also produces a soil repelling silicone shield of protection.

Other features of the Turtle Wax T-244R1 Power Out include:

  • Award winning cleaner
  • Uses the brands Odor-X odor eliminator
  • Tackle all types of dirt, stains and odors
  • Detachable scrub brush on the 18 oz bottle
  • Heavy duty formula that cleans and deodorizes
  • Provides a protective barrier against future dirt

The Turtle Wax T-244R1 Power Out is by far the best car carpet cleaner for the money that provides great results. The detachable micro brush that is included with the bottle is a great bonus that is highly effective as agitating the formula into the dirt.

Check it Out

5. Meguiar’s G9719 Car Carpet Cleaner


Meguiar’s are a highly reputable brand and their car carpet cleaner is a premium option. It’s a professional strength formula designed to provide interior fabrics with a deep clean that removes stains and odors.

It’s a foaming action formula that penetrates the fibers within the fabric from the bottom up for a truly deep clean.

Other features of the Meguiar’s G9719 include:

  • Aerosol spray with a spot or all-over nozzle
  • Activating formula that dissolves stains
  • Leaves carpet feeling and looking like new
  • Fresh smelling scent
  • Leaves no sticky residue
  • 19 oz bottle

Although it does come with a premium price tag, it’s a fast acting foam that provides like-new results each and every time. Overall, the Meguiar’s G9719 is a professional strength formula designed for interior fabrics that won’t disappoint.

Check it Out

6. 3D High Foam Carpet Shampoo


The 3D High Foam Carpet Shampoo is an advanced formula that cleans and deodorizes in one step. It’s a biodegradable formula that provides the interior fabrics with a deep clean, which eliminates any dirt, odor or stains.

The brand state that if you have a large amount of carpet, you can effectively work the shampoo into the carpet using a dual action polisher.

Other features of the 3D High Foam Shampoo include:

  • High foaming action
  • Fresh lemon scent
  • Optical brightener that brings out the original color
  • Used by professional detailers
  • All natural with no harmful chemicals
  • VOC compliant
  • Made in the USA
  • Available in a 16 or 128 oz bottle

Overall, it’s an excellent all-round car carpet cleaner that provides great value for money and cleaning performance. It’s able to tackle most stains upon interior fabrics and can be diluted to make you get more bang for your buck.

Check it Out

7. Prestone Carpet Cleaner and Odor Neutralizer


The Prestone AS345 is a similar carpet cleaner to the Turtle Wax alternative above. It has a a detectable scrubbing brush and a foaming action that helps to lift dirt from the bottom up for a complete deep clean.

To further improve the cleaning performance, the formula uses advanced wetting agents, that help tackle the deepest of stains or odors.

Other features of the Prestone AS345 include:

  • Suitable for interior cloth, carpets, mats and vinyl
  • Odor neutralizing chemicals
  • Deep scrubbing brush
  • Breaks down dried-on solids
  • Suitable for all types of dirt
  • 18 oz bottle

It’s a highly rated car carpet cleaner that provides fast results using the integrated scrubbing brush. The Prestone AS345 does come with a premium price tag but it not only cleans but provides excellent odor neutralizing qualities.

Check it Out

Car Carpet Cleaner Buying Guide

The carpets of your car can be come covered in dirt fairly quickly. No matter how hard you try, it’s near enough impossible to avoid getting them dirty. Although vacuuming may get most of the dirt out of the carpets, there will some dirt left deep in the fibers of the fabric.

There are many all-purpose types of cleaners but using the best carpet cleaner that is designed for carpets is highly advised for superior results.

To help you make an informed buying decision, we have produced the below guide regarding car carpet cleaners.

How To Clean Your Car Carpets

You will be surprised by the amount of dirt that can accumulate on the carpet. Most carpets are usually a dark color to reduce the dirt that is actually visible. Using a vacuum to most car owners would be classed as “cleaning the car interior” but this is not the case.

If you were to clean your car carpets completely, the seats will need to be removed. Although this may seem quite excessive, you will be surprised by the amount of dirt that is left under the seats. The below images is a prime example that we tackled recently.

carpet cleaner for cars

The amount of dirt underneath the seat can produce foul odors if left for too long. Most vacuums will not be able to reach all the areas underneath the seat, which is why it’s best to remove them for a truly deep clean of your car carpets.

Removing the Seats and other Components

Although it’s not essential, removing the seats of your car is a great way to provide the ultimate interior clean. It’s advised that you have a mechanics socket set available because you may require multiple sockets during this process. To give you an idea of how to remove the seats, we advise that you check out this video.

As well as removing the seats, you will also want to remove any mats or other interior components that may get in the way.

Cleaning the Carpets

In order to achieve the best results when cleaning your car carpet, we advise that you follow the below steps:

  1. Remove any mats.
  2. Vacuum interior thoroughly.
  3. Spray cleaner onto applicator and work it into carpet in a circular motion.
  4. Use a lightly damp wet to wipe off the cleaner residue.
  5. Open all doors and windows to allow the carpet to dry.
  6. Reinstall the car mats once the carpet is dried.

Depending upon how deep the stains are in the carpet will depending how hard you need to scrub. Some cleaners may require a specific dwell time to full activate.

It’s strongly advised that you avoid strong chemicals or home remedies when cleaning the carpets. All of our recommendations are suited for auto carpets and are safe to use on all types of fabrics and colors. The below image is the result of our carpet cleaning task, which is much cleaner than the previous image above.

best auto carpet cleaner

Scrubbing Brush

Most cleaners will require agitation once sprayed upon the carpet. This allows them to work more effectively and tackle dirt that is stuck at the bottom of the fibers.

Some manufacturers integrate a scrubbing brush onto the bottle, which can be detached. However, if there isn’t a brush, we highly advise purchasing a new one that is designed for car interior fabrics and isn’t too harsh.

Disinfection Qualities

Although a carpet may look clean, it may be full of germs or invisible dirt that cannot be seen by the human eye. To tackle this type of dirt, you will want to ensure the car carpet cleaner you choose has disinfection qualities.

If you suffer from allergies and a car air purifier isn’t making much of a difference, this type of carpet cleaning may be the answer.

No Harmful Chemicals

Trying to replace the carpets or mats within your car can be expensive. Therefore, you will want to ensure that the cleaner you use is designed for automotive interiors. Some cleaners may contain strong chemicals that may discolor the carpet or have other negative effects.

All of the recommendations within this article are safe to use and don’t cause any adverse side effects to the carpet or interior fabrics.

Deodorizing

In order to truly eliminate bad odors that are found within the carpet, you will want a deodorizing cleaner. Many cheap options simply cover the odor with a scented smell but this will only be temporary. A deodorizing formula will eliminate the odor completely as well as leave a fresh scent within the car.

Conclusion

Tackling tough stains, dirt or odors that have embedded deep into the carpets fibers can be difficult with just a vacuum. A car carpet cleaner is designed to dissolve and eliminate dirt with very little effort required.

All of our recommendations are suited to a range of budgets and application methods. It’s highly advised that you choose a formula designed for auto carpets as opposed to cleaners used for home carpets.

procarreviews author

Written By Dan

About the Author

Dan is an automotive journalist and owner of over 10 cars ranging from supercars, tuned cars, classics and your good old beater cars. He always like to get his hands dirty with nut and bolt restorations or detailing sessions using the best products on the market.

More About Our Team →

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *