Best Overall
Chemical Guys Total Interior Cleaner and Protectant

An interior cleaner suitable for all surfaces.

Best Value
303 Interior Cleaner

An interior cleaner that won’t break the bank.

Best Leather Cleaner
Chemical Guys Leather Cleaner Kit

A leather cleaner that shines over the rest.

Best Cleaning Wipes
Armor All Car Cleaning and Leather Wipes

Interior wipes that go above and beyond.

Best Shine
Meguiar’s Ultimate Protectant

An interior cleaner that leaves a noticeable shine.

Interior cleaning is an essential part of car care that can be easily overlooked. Great car interior cleaners not only keep the interior of your car presentable, but also improve its health and prevent further damage over time.

Keep in mind that not every soap is appropriate for interior detailing. When we asked Rob Harper, Director of Product Development and Tech Support at Ziebart International, about the biggest changes he’s seen over his more than 20 years in the detailing industry, he mentioned interior cleaners.

“The level of electronics has changed a tremendous amount [and there are] things we have to be careful of. Certainly, we don’t want to get the vital electronics in the car wet. But also some chemicals adversely affect things like touch screens and other electronics in the car.”

Fortunately, there are a number of interior detailing products specifically designed for sensitive electronics and other common car surfaces. In this review, our team of experts recommends some of our favorite options.

#1 Best Overall: Chemical Guys Total Interior Cleaner And Protectant

The Chemical Guys Total Interior Cleaner And Protectant being used to clean the interior of a vehicle.

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We picked Chemical Guys Total Interior Cleaner and Protectant for our Best Overall pick because of its toughness on grime with an added layer of lasting protection. Its formula packs a punch against stubborn stains without damaging your car’s interior.

In addition to its power, this cleaner leaves your car smelling fantastic.

Key Features

  • Comes in a 16.0-oz spray bottle, 0.5-gallon, or 1.0-gallon jug
  • Can be bought as part of an interior cleaner kit
  • Gentle formula
  • UV protection
  • Safe for nearly all interior surfaces
  • Tropical smell

Our Experience

The Chemical Guys Total Interior Cleaner And Protectant being used to clean the interior of a car door.

We gave the Chemical Guys Total Cleaner and Protectant 4.9 out of 5 stars. Our review team found this all-purpose cleaner to be highly effective on stains without damaging the interior of our test car, and it left a noticeable gleam with an inviting fruity aroma. We recommend the Total Cleaner for anyone who wants to give their car upholstery a spick-and-span clean.

Overall Rating4.9 out of 5
Application4.5 out of 5
Scent5 out of 5
Dust and Stain Removal5 out of 5
UV Protection5 out of 5
  • Application: Chemical Guys isn’t kidding with the title “Total Cleaner.” We were able to spray this on nearly all interior surfaces without damaging them. The formula’s watery texture caused it to drip more than expected, so users should be wary of over-spraying.
  • Scent: We liked the Total Cleaner’s flowery aroma, which lingered long after we finished cleaning. It had no hint of any chemical smells.
  • Dust and Stain Removal: No remnants of dust remained after a once-over with the Total Cleaner and a microfiber towel. Stains took little effort to tackle, too.
  • UV Protection: The Total Cleaner’s streak-free finish left a nice UV protection layer over all cleaned sections of the car.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.6 out of 5 based on over 23,000 ratings

Customers praise the Chemical Guys Total Interior Cleaner and Protectant’s versatility and usefulness on hard stains and scratches. A whopping 78 percent of these reviews were 5 out of 5 stars, however there are some negative reviews. These reviews argue that the Total Cleaner is not suitable for all surface types as advertised.

What Is It Good For?

We recommend the Chemical Guys Total Interior Cleaner and Protectant for anyone who wants a versatile and affordable interior cleaner.

#2 Best Value: 303 Interior Cleaner

The 303 Interior Cleaner being used to clean the interior of a vehicle.

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Car interior cleaning doesn’t have to be expensive. While the 303 Interior Cleaner is tough on ground-in stains, it’s light on surfaces for a smooth finish.

Key Features

  • Comes in a 16.0-oz spray bottle
  • Safe on car electronics
  • Multi-surface
  • UV protection
  • Two-year shelf life

Our Experience

We gave the 303 Interior Cleaner 4.9 out of 5 stars. Its dust-eliminating capabilities and streak-free shine are great for the bargain price.

Overall Rating4.9 out of 5
Application5 out of 5
Scent5 out of 5
Dust and Stain Removal5 out of 5
UV Protection4.5 out of 5
  • Application: We found the spray on the 303 to have a wide reach, so only a few sprays were required to cover an entire door interior. It spread just as easily as expected due to its liquid texture.
  • Scent: While most interior cleaning products have some sort of smell, the 303 amazingly didn’t. We were unable to pick up a new scent after application.
  • Dust and Stain Removal: 303 was tough on stains and cut through grime without any trouble. It also left a gleaming shine as a protective dust barrier.
  • UV Protection: Although it’s great at eliminating dirt and grime, 303 does not offer a strong UV barrier.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.6 out of 5 based on over 9,000 ratings

Around 79 percent of these customers gave the 303 Interior Cleaner 5-star reviews, with positive comments praising how well the cleaner works on difficult upholstery stains. Some negative reviews were centered around residue that the 303 left behind on their dashboards after cleaning.

What Is It Good For?

For anyone who wants a solid interior clean on a budget, check out the 303 Total Interior Cleaner. It packs a bang for your buck that most competitors can’t match.

#3 Best Leather Cleaner: Chemical Guys Leather Cleaner Kit

The Chemical Guys Leather Cleaner Kit.

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This Chemical Guys Leather Cleaner Kit blew us away. With no smell nor streaks, it was very easy to apply and let dry. We highly recommend this kit for anyone who wants to go the extra step to keep their leather seats looking new.

Key Features

  • Includes a 16.0-oz spray bottle of leather cleaner and a 16.0-oz pour bottle of conditioner
  • pH balanced
  • UV protection
  • Can be used on any leather surface (shoes, chairs, etc.)

Our Experience

The Chemical Guys Leather Cleaner Kit Conditioner.
We had a good experience working with this Chemical Guys product, as we typically do with products from the recognizable brand. The leather conditioner gives a semi-wet look for a thorough finish.

Overall Rating4.9 out of 5
Application5 out of 5
Scent5 out of 5
Dust and Stain Removal4.5 out of 5
UV Protection5 out of 5
  • Application: Instructions for use were very clear on both products. Each one rubbed smoothly into our leather seats without streaking or clotting. Both the cleaner and conditioner require a microfiber towel or applicator pad to rub into leather, which unfortunately must be bought separately.
  • Scent: Chemical Guys advertises these products as odorless for good reason. Neither the cleaner nor conditioner left a scent.
  • Dust and Stain Removal: The cleaner was able to handle light stains but had a tough time with older ones, and dust was no problem.
  • UV Protection: Although the cleaner adds a layer of UV protection, we recommend using the conditioner on top of the cleaner for the best results. The conditioner gives a semi-wet look, too, that’s more aesthetically pleasing than the cleaner alone.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.6 out of 5 based on over 29,000 ratings

Amazon customers far and wide praise this Chemical Guys Leather Kit. Many of the top reviews swear by the kit’s versatility for more than just cars. One customer even claimed to have used the kit on her leather sofa. The few negative reviews insist that the kit left their leather seats sticky and smelling awful.

What Is It Good For?

We highly recommend the Chemical Guys Leather Cleaner and Leather Conditioner Kit for rookie and professional car detailers alike. Its only flaw is that it can’t be used all over your car.

#4 Best Cleaning Wipes: Armor All Car Cleaning And Leather Wipes

The Armor All Car Cleaning And Leather Wipes being used to clean the dashboard of a vehicle.

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If you don’t want the hassle of using a microfiber towel, cleaning wipes are your next best option. Armor All Car Cleaning and Leather Wipes are one of our favorite products from testing for their cleaning abilities with little extra work.

Key Features

  • Double pack of interior cleaning and leather cleaning wipes
  • Cleaning wipes safe on all surfaces
  • Leather wipes clean and protect leather
  • Lint-free

Our Experience

A side view of backseats in a vehicle after using the Armor All Car Cleaning And Leather Wipes.

We gave the Armor All Interior Car Cleaning and Leather Wipes 4.8 out of 5 stars. Fun and easy to use, the cleaning wipes make interior detailing feel like less of a chore. The leather wipes did leave some very slight evidence of streaks in our test vehicle.

Overall Rating4.8 out of 5
Application5 out of 5
Scent4.5 out of 5
Dust and Stain Removal5 out of 5
UV Protection4.5 out of 5
  • Application: Because the wipes are pre-soaked in a cleaning solution, application is very simple. All we had to do was wipe and watch grime disappear. Also, the wipes’ thin texture made them perfect for reaching into tight crevices where microfiber cloths struggled. We especially liked these wipes for use on door panels and the dashboard.
  • Scent: Much like a Clorox® wipe, the Armor All wipes had a bleach-heavy smell.
  • Dust and Stain Removal: The Armor All wipes were able to remove dirt and stains with no problem. We especially liked that we could see what was being picked up by the wipes as they soiled over use.
  • UV Protection: These wipes provide UV protection against cracking and fading, but the residual layer they left was barely noticeable.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.6 out of 5 based on over 9,000 ratings

A total of 75 percent of reviewers left a 5-star rating on these Armor All wipes. Positive reviews commended the wipes’ multi-surface power, however some of the most-liked reviews were negative. Customers complained that the wipes left streaks on their interiors, especially the ones designed for leather. Other customers claimed that their seats were discolored after using Armor All wipes.

What Is It Good For?

Armor All Car Cleaning wipes are a multi-purpose tool for anyone who needs a quick touch-up to their car’s interior. The leather wipes, on the other hand, are best suited for light use on leather surfaces.

#5 Best Shine: Meguiar's Ultimate Protectant

The Meguiar's Ultimate Protectant being used to clean the center console of a vehicle.

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If you want a center console that practically glows, we recommend using Meguiar’s Ultimate Protectant for your next interior cleaning. It performs spectacularly well on hard surfaces and leaves a visible sheen so you know your car is protected.

Key Features

  • Comes in a 15.0-oz spray bottle
  • Safe on vinyl, rubber, and plastic
  • UV protection
  • Water-resistant

Our Experience

A vehicle's dashboard after using the Meguiar's Ultimate Protectant.

We gave the Meguiar’s Ultimate Protectant spray 4.4 out of 5 stars. It has superb UV protection and glossy finish that we love, yet is not suitable for all surfaces and can stain if not handled with care.

Overall Rating4.4 out of 5
Application4 out of 5
Scent4 out of 5
Dust and Stain Removal4.5 out of 5
UV Protection5 out of 5
  • Application: The Meguiar’s created no mess nor fuss during the application process. It had a thicker texture than the other spray-on formulas we tested, making it more difficult to spread. One thing we noticed was the residue it left, which clearly indicated where the Meguiar’s had been applied and where it hadn’t.
  • Scent: The Meguiar’s had a relatively light smell of chemical cleaners, but nothing that was too overpowering.
  • Dust and Stain Removal: Dust was no problem for the Meguiar’s while ground-in stains took some extra effort to remove.
  • UV Protection: We found the Meguiar’s to have the best UV protection of the products we tested. The clear coat finish shows where extra protection is necessary, too.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.6 out of 5 based on over 9,800 ratings

Despite around 77 percent of these ratings being 5 stars, many of the top-liked reviews express disappointment with the Meguiar’s. Top comments cite a greasy finish and wax-like touch.

Satisfied customers, meanwhile, applaud how well the Meguiar’s works on rubber surfaces, particularly tires.

What Is It Good For?

Meguiar’s Ultimate Protectant provides high quality interior cleaning and UV protection that lasts well between washes. This spray-on is suited for those who want their dashboards to shine bright and stay protected.

Car Interior Cleaners Buyers Guide

We’ve interviewed several professional detailers to get an idea of the most useful products and techniques for at-home detailers. Interior cleaning is one of the easier and valuable detailing tasks anyone can perform on their own vehicle.

Footage of interior cleaners being used on a vehicle's dashboard.

Many gentle soaps should work well for interior detailing, but before making a purchase, consider the following factors:


Car interior cleaners that work well should not leave blotches, stains, residues, or streaks after application. Many interior cleaners require a clean cloth for application, so having one on hand is very important.

It is also important to note that different cleaners may only work well for certain surfaces. A glass cleaner may be suitable for your seats, but an upholstery cleaner can just as easily leave streaks on your windows. Always check what surfaces an interior cleaner is designed for before purchasing.


Cleaners with an overpowering smell can lead to headaches, so always choose one with a scent you enjoy.

Dust And Stain Removal

Dry cloths alone merely spread dust rather than picking it up, and stains are visually unappealing. This is why a proper interior cleaner should be able to pick up dust while also being tough on stains. The right cleaner will also help prevent future dust and stain buildup.

UV Protection

Over time, UV rays can cause vinyl, leather, plastic, and rubber surfaces to crack and fade. This damage can be permanent if left untreated, so interior cleaners must supply UV protection to prevent it.

How We Tested

The car interior cleaners in this article went through two rounds of reviews. We started by searching retailers like Amazon, RealTruck, and Advance Auto Parts for top products, looking at factors such as effectiveness, versatility, customer ratings, and prices.

Our product testing team then ordered the car interior cleaners that best met these standards. A team member tested each product on a 2003 Ford Focus Zx3, taking note of how easily the car interior cleaner did could be applied, what kind of scent it produced, how well it handled dust and stains, and its level of UV protection Each car interior cleaner was given a rating out of 5 stars based on these criteria.

Best Car Interior Cleaners Testing Process

We used a nearly twenty-year-old Ford Focus with years of interior wear-and-tear to test the car interior cleaners for this review. Each cleaner was used on various surfaces within the car with a microfiber towel, with the exception of the Armor All wipes. Results were calculated based on how well each cleaner performed according to the criteria listed above.

Why You Can Trust Us

Each year, we test over 350 auto products on vehicles and in our testing lab. Our team of product testers thoroughly researches top products, unboxes and puts our hands on each component, and tests the items on real vehicles before making recommendations to readers.

We publish hundreds of product and service reviews to bring car enthusiasts detailed guides on automotive tools, detailing kits, car seats, pet products, and much more. For more information on our testing methodology and how we evaluate every product, check out our methodology page here.

Car Interior Cleaners Bottom Line

A car’s interior is a difficult thing to keep clean. With kids, pets, or a dirty job, the next devastating interior mess is always nearby. For the best overall interior cleaning, look no further than the Chemical Guys Total Interior Cleaner. For leather interiors, the Chemical Guys Leather Cleaner Kit is a winner. And for a great value, check out the 303 Interior Cleaner for that perfect shine.

Car Interior Cleaners: FAQ

*Data accurate at time of publication.