Car covers help keep your vehicle clean and protected from environmental influences such as dirt and ultraviolet rays that can damage the paint job. Covers become very dirty, though, because all of the dirt, tree sap and bird droppings fall on them instead of on your paint. Washing a car cover is a challenge because of their large size. They cannot fit into a washer and dryer.


  1. Turn the car cover inside-out and put it on the car.
  2. Set the bucket on a flat surface and pour in 4 ounces of gentle all-purpose cleaner such as Simple Green or auto wash such as Meguiar’s. Add 1 gallon of warm water.
  3. Using the sponge, gently wash the cover. Start in the center of the top and work your way toward the edges rubbing in a wide circular motion. Keep going until the entire cover has been washed.
  4. Rinse the cover thoroughly with water and let it dry on the car.
  5. Turn the cover right side out when it is completely dry.

Things You’ll Need:

  • Bucket
  • Gentle all-purpose cleaner, car wash or dish detergent
  • Warm water
  • Sponge

Tips & Warnings

  • Dish soap is not generally recommended for contact with car paint, but if the budget does not allow for more expensive cleaners make sure to rinse it thoroughly.
  • If you use dish soap, reduce the amount to 1 teaspoon because too much dish soap can strip the wax off your car. This will not normally hurt your paint, but you will need to apply more wax to get the shine back.

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