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How to Clean Leather Seats

Leather seats are expensive. Keep them looking that way with a little cleaning and conditioning.


  • Step 1: Park the car in a shady area.
  • Step 2: Vacuum the seats thoroughly, making sure to remove all debris in the crevices.
  • Step 3: Apply leather cleaning solution to a dry sponge, and wipe one seat with circular motions until it's covered with cleaner.
  • TIP: For stubborn stains, try mixing equal parts lemon juice and cream of tartar and rub the paste into the spot—just make sure to test it on an inconspicuous place first.
  • Step 4: Dry the seat with a cloth.
  • Step 5: Repeat with the other seats one at a time, rubbing the cleaning solution on with a sponge and then drying with a cloth.
  • Step 6: When all the seats are clean and dry, apply leather conditioner to a clean cotton cloth. To protect leather from the sun, use one that contains sunscreen.
  • TIP: For quick clean-ups, use leather wipes, sold in auto parts stores, that contain both cleaner and conditioner.
  • Step 7: Wipe down the seats with the conditioner.
  • Step 8: Let the seats dry for at least an hour. They should now be as clean and soft as when the car rolled out of the factory.
  • FACT: The Italian Pagani Zonda S racecar comes with a pair of driving shoes made of the same leather as the car's interior.

You Will Need

  • A hand-held vacuum
  • or one with an attachment
  • A bottle of leather cleaning solution
  • A soft
  • dry sponge
  • Clean dry cloths
  • A spray bottle of water
  • A bottle of leather conditioner with sunscreen
  • Lemon juice (optional)
  • Cream of tartar (optional)

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