How to Get New Car Smell in Old Cars: Top Secrets Revealed!

Do you miss that ‘new car smell’ in your old vehicle? You’re not alone. The scent of a new car can be intoxicating, and it’s no wonder why so many people want to replicate it in their older cars. But how can you achieve this without buying a brand new vehicle? Luckily, there are steps you can take to get that coveted smell back. One way is to clean the air conditioning system to remove any smelly particles that may cause a stink. Another option is to place baking soda in your car, which can absorb odors and freshen the air.

But why do people crave the new car smell? It’s more than just a pleasant aroma. For many, it’s associated with the excitement of driving a brand new Cadillac XT6 off the lot and the feeling of luxury that comes with it. Plus, a fresh scent can make your car feel cleaner and more inviting by masking any smelly particles trapped in the carpet.

However, it’s good to follow the right steps to work towards achieving the desired results. Taking a course can be helpful for people who want to improve their skills.

Understanding the Science Behind New Car Smell and How to Keep It

Have you ever wondered why new cars have that distinct smell? The scent is often described as a combination of leather, plastic, and other materials. This odor is known as the “new car smell,” and it can be quite good. However, over time, this fragrance fades away, leaving your vehicle smelling like any other old car. If you notice a stink in your car, it’s time to vacuum it thoroughly. You don’t want anything in your nose that doesn’t belong there!

What Causes New Car Smell?

New car smell comes from various chemicals emitted by the interior materials and adhesives used during manufacturing. These chemicals include volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as benzene, formaldehyde, toluene, and xylene. While these compounds are not harmful in small amounts, they can cause health problems if inhaled excessively. To get rid of the odor, one can use baking soda or vacuum the interior. However, mold can also contribute to unpleasant smells, especially if it grows on the plastic parts of the car.

The scent of new car smell varies depending on the type of materials used in the vehicle’s interior. Leather seats give off a distinct aroma compared to fabric or vinyl seats. Furthermore, air conditioning systems play a role in circulating these scents throughout the cabin. However, it is important to note that particles can accumulate in the air ducts, leading to mold growth and unpleasant odors. To prevent this, it is recommended to use intra clean methods specifically designed for plastic parts.

Over time, good exposure to sunlight and air circulation work together to cause these VOCs to evaporate. As a result, the new car smell gradually fades away until it disappears completely, without any mold or harmful particles lingering in the air.

How to Maintain New Car Smell

Maintaining the good new car smell requires proper work and care of your vehicle’s interior components. Here are some tips for keeping your car smelling fresh and preventing mold from affecting your nose: —

  • Clean your car interior regularly to remove dirt and grime that may trap odors, including the distinctive smell of new cars. Regular cleaning can help maintain the new car scent.
  • Avoid Smoking Inside Your Car: Cigarette smoke has a distinctive smell that can cling onto fabrics inside new cars. To prevent this, consider using an interior kit to keep your car smelling fresh and mold-free.
  • Use Air Fresheners or Odor Absorbers in Your Car Interior: Air fresheners with a new car scent can help mask unpleasant smells in your car while odor absorbers eliminate them entirely. Additionally, if you notice mold in your car interior, odor absorbers can help eliminate the musty smell.
  • Keep Your Car Out of Direct Sunlight: Exposure to sunlight accelerates the evaporation of VOCs, causing the new car smell to fade away faster and increasing the risk of mold growth inside the car.

While there are products that claim to replicate the new car smell, they may contain harmful chemicals and are not recommended for long-term use. Instead, focus on maintaining your vehicle’s cleanliness and avoiding habits that can cause unpleasant odors, such as mold growth due to excess moisture.

Key Steps for Getting New Car Smell Back: Top Detailer Secrets

Are you tired of driving your old car that doesn’t smell as good as it used to? Don’t worry, getting that ‘new car smell’ back is not impossible. With a few simple steps, you can make your car’s interior smell like new again, even if it has been affected by mold.

First step: Clean the Interior Thoroughly

The first step in getting new car smell back is to give your car’s interior a thorough cleaning. This includes vacuuming the carpets and seats, wiping down all surfaces with a microfiber cloth, and cleaning the windows. Use a high-quality cleaner and avoid using harsh chemicals that can damage your car’s interior. Ensure there is no mold present in your car.

Here are some tips for cleaning different parts of your car, including how to deal with mold: —

  • Carpets: Use a carpet cleaner specifically designed for automotive use to prevent mold. Apply the cleaner generously and scrub with a brush before vacuuming to avoid mold growth.
  • Car Interior Seats: If you have leather seats in your car interior, use a leather cleaner and conditioner to restore their shine and softness. For fabric seats, use an upholstery cleaner to remove any mold and stains.
  • Dashboard: Wipe down the car interior dashboard with an all-purpose cleaner or specific dashboard cleaner to prevent mold buildup.
  • Windows: Use glass cleaners specifically made for cars to avoid streaks and mold.

Torque detail: Use an Ozone Generator

After thoroughly cleaning your car’s interior, you can take it one step further by using an ozone generator. An ozone generator produces ozone gas which eliminates odors and mold by breaking down molecules in the air.

To use an ozone generator:

  1. Remove all living things from inside the vehicle
  2. Set up the ozone generator according to its instructions
  3. Turn on the machine and leave it running for several hours to prevent mold growth in your car interior.
  4. Leave doors open afterward so that any remaining gas and moisture dissipates safely to prevent mold growth.

Note that ozone generators should only be used in unoccupied spaces and with proper safety precautions, especially when dealing with mold.

Top Detailer Secrets: Apply a Scented Air Freshener

Once you’ve cleaned your car’s interior and used an ozone generator, make sure to check for any signs of mold. If you do find mold, address it immediately before adding a scented air freshener. When you’re ready to add the air freshener, choose one that is specifically designed for automotive use and doesn’t leave any residue.

Here are some popular types of car air fresheners:

  • Hanging air fresheners: These come in various shapes and sizes and can be hung from your rearview mirror to combat mold.
  • Vent clip-on air fresheners: These attach to your car’s vents and release fragrance as the AC or heat runs, helping to prevent mold buildup.
  • Spray air fresheners: These are sprayed directly into the cabin of your car to eliminate mold.

Steam Clean Your Car’s Interior for a Fresh Scent

If you’ve ever driven an old car, you know how unpleasant it can be when the interior smells musty or stale due to mold. Fortunately, there are ways to get that “new car smell” back in your vehicle without having to buy a new one. One of the most effective methods is steam cleaning your car’s interior.

How does steam cleaning work?

Steam cleaning uses high-temperature water vapor to clean and sanitize surfaces. The heat of the steam kills bacteria, mold, and other microorganisms that cause odors, leaving your car smelling fresh and clean.

Removing smelly particles from carpets and floor mats

Carpets and floor mats are notorious for trapping dirt, dust, mold, and other particles that can cause unpleasant odors in your car. Steam cleaning these surfaces can effectively remove these particles, leaving them looking and smelling like new.

To get the best results when steam cleaning carpets and floor mats, make sure to eliminate any mold present.

  1. Vacuum thoroughly before starting.
  2. Use warm water during steam cleaning to help loosen up dirt, grime, and mold.
  3. Move slowly over each section to ensure thorough cleaning.
  4. Allow carpets and floor mats to dry completely before driving your car to prevent mold growth.

Using an intra clean step interior kit

Another way to refresh the oyster color interior of your vehicle is by using an intra clean step interior kit instead of air fresheners. This kit includes everything you need to deep-clean your car’s upholstery, including a cleaner solution, a protective coating, and a microfiber cloth. It also helps in removing mold from your car’s interior.

To use this kit:

  1. Vacuum all surfaces before starting.
  2. Apply the cleaner solution, specifically formulated to tackle mold, according to the instructions on the bottle.
  3. Use the included microfiber cloth to wipe down all surfaces thoroughly and remove any mold present.
  4. Apply the protective coating as directed on the bottle.

Using this kit regularly can help prevent mold and keep your car’s interior looking and smelling great.

Other tips for keeping your car smelling fresh

In addition to steam cleaning and using an intra clean step interior kit, there are other things you can do to prevent mold and keep your car smelling fresh.

  • Avoid eating or smoking in your car.
  • Keep the inside of your car clean and free of clutter.
  • Use a fabric refresher spray on upholstery and carpets between deep cleanings.
  • Open the windows occasionally to let fresh air circulate.

Why does my car smell musty?

If your car smells musty, it’s likely due to mold or mildew growth. These microorganisms thrive in warm, damp environments like a closed-up car. To prevent mold and mildew growth, try to keep your car dry by wiping down any wet surfaces as soon as possible and opening the windows when it’s safe to do so.

Shampooing for a Fresh Scent: Cleaning the Seats

Eliminate Odor-Causing Bacteria

The first step in getting that “new car smell” in an old car is to eliminate odor-causing bacteria. Antimicrobial cleaning products are effective at killing bacteria and preventing them from returning. Look for products that specifically target bacteria, as they will be more effective than general-purpose cleaners.

Vacuum Pet Hair and Dirt Before Cleaning

Before shampooing your seats, it’s important to remove any pet hair or dirt that may be trapped in the upholstery. Use a vacuum with a crevice tool to get into all the nooks and crannies of your seats and remove any debris. This will ensure that your cleaning solution can penetrate deep into the fabric for maximum effectiveness.

Apply Baking Soda to Absorb Odors

Baking soda is a natural odor absorber and can help neutralize any unpleasant smells in your car’s cabin. Sprinkle baking soda liberally over your seats before vacuuming, paying special attention to areas where odors may be most concentrated, such as near food spills or pet accidents.

Choose a Cleaning Product with a Fresh Scent

When selecting a cleaning product for your seats, look for one with a fresh scent that will leave your cabin smelling clean and inviting. Avoid harsh chemicals or cleaners that contain bleach or ammonia, as these can damage leather or paint on your ride.

Avoid Using Harsh Cleaning Products

It’s important to choose cleaning products carefully when working on delicate surfaces like leather upholstery. Harsh chemicals can cause discoloration, cracking or other damage over time. Always test new cleaning products on an inconspicuous area first before using them on larger areas of your car’s interior.

Maintaining the New Car Scent: Tips and Tricks

Use air fresheners that mimic the scent of a new car

One of the easiest ways to maintain the new car smell is by using an air freshener that mimics the scent. There are many products available in the market that replicate this scent, ranging from sprays to hanging air fresheners.

When selecting an air freshener, choose one with a long-lasting fragrance and avoid those with overpowering scents. Look for products with natural ingredients such as essential oils or activated charcoal, which not only mask odors but also absorb them.

To prolong its effectiveness, it’s best to use an air freshener after cleaning your car’s interior thoroughly.

Clean and vacuum your car regularly to prevent odors from building up

Odors can build up in your car’s interior due to dirt, dust, food particles, and other debris accumulating over time. To prevent this from happening, make sure you clean your vehicle regularly.

Start by removing all trash and clutter from inside the car. Vacuuming is essential in getting rid of loose dirt and dust on carpets and seats. Use a soft-bristled brush attachment to remove dirt from hard-to-reach areas such as crevices between seats or dashboard vents.

For stubborn stains on upholstery or carpets, use a stain remover specifically designed for automotive interiors. Avoid using harsh chemicals that may damage surfaces or cause discoloration.

After cleaning your car’s interior thoroughly, consider applying a fabric protectant spray to help repel future stains and spills.

Consider professional detailing services to deep clean and refresh your car’s interior

If you want a more thorough cleaning of your vehicle’s interior than what you can achieve at home, consider hiring a professional detailer. Detailers have specialized equipment such as steam cleaners that can sanitize surfaces effectively while preserving their appearance.

Professional detailing services include thorough cleaning of every nook and cranny of your car’s interior, including the headliner, dashboard, and door panels. They can also apply a protective coating to surfaces such as leather seats or steering wheels to prevent cracking or fading.

Detailing services can be expensive, but they are worth it if you want a deep cleaning that will leave your car smelling fresh and looking new.

Quick Fixes: Using a Car Air Spray and Dealing with Pets/Smoking

Use a Car Air Spray to Freshen Up the Air Inside Your Old Car

The easiest way to get that ‘new car smell’ in an old car is by using a car air spray. It’s quick, easy, and affordable. There are many types of air sprays available in the market. Some of them come with different scents while others are odorless.

When choosing an air spray, make sure you choose one that doesn’t contain harmful organic compounds that can have negative health effects. Check the label for ingredients and avoid products that contain phthalates or benzene.

Here are some popular car air sprays you can try:

  • Chemical Guys AIR_101_16 New Car Smell Premium Air Freshener
  • Meguiar’s G16402 Whole Car Air Re-Fresher Odor Eliminator Mist
  • Little Trees U6P-60155 Black Ice Hanging Paper Tree

Make sure to follow the instructions on the product label when using an air spray. Also, don’t overuse it as too much scent can be overpowering and cause headaches.

Try Using DIY Ceramic Coating or Cleaning the Air Conditioning System to Get Rid of Particles and Volatile Organic Compounds

If your old car has persistent pet or smoking smells, simply using an air spray may not be enough. You need to deal with particles and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that cause these odors.

One way to do this is by applying a DIY ceramic coating on your car’s interior surfaces. Ceramic coatings create a protective layer on top of surfaces which repels dirt, dust, and other particles that cause bad odors.

Another way is by cleaning your car’s air conditioning system. Over time, bacteria and mold can build up inside your AC system causing unpleasant smells every time you turn it on. You can clean your AC system using a specialized cleaning solution or by taking it to a professional mechanic.

Be Mindful of the Effects of Air Fresheners

While air fresheners are a quick and easy way to get rid of bad odors, some of them contain harmful organic compounds that can have negative health effects. These compounds can cause headaches, nausea, and even respiratory problems.

When using air fresheners, make sure you choose products that don’t contain phthalates or benzene. You can also opt for natural air fresheners like essential oils or activated charcoal bags.

It’s also important to note that air fresheners only mask bad odors. They don’t eliminate the source of the problem. So if you’re dealing with persistent pet or smoking smells, consider using DIY ceramic coating or cleaning your car’s AC system instead.

Conclusion: Achieving That ‘New Car Smell’ in Your Old Car

Getting that ‘new car smell’ back in your old car is possible with the right techniques. Understanding the science behind new car smell and maintaining it is key to achieving a fresh scent. Top detailer secrets such as steam cleaning and shampooing can help remove unwanted odors from your car’s interior. Maintaining the new car scent requires regular cleaning and using quick fixes like air sprays.

In summary, getting that ‘new car smell’ back can be achieved by following these steps: understanding the science, top detailing secrets, steam cleaning, shampooing, maintaining freshness, and quick fixes.

Don’t let unwanted odors ruin your driving experience. Try out these tips and enjoy a fresh-smelling ride every time.


Q: Can I use household cleaners to clean my car’s interior?

A: It is not recommended to use household cleaners on your car’s interior as they may contain chemicals that can damage the surfaces of your vehicle. Instead, opt for cleaners specifically designed for automotive interiors.

Q: How often should I clean my car’s interior to maintain a fresh scent?

A: It is recommended to clean your car’s interior at least once a month to maintain a fresh scent. However, if you have pets or smoke in your vehicle frequently, you may need to clean more often.

Q: Will an air freshener alone get rid of bad smells in my car?

A: While air fresheners can mask bad smells temporarily, they will not completely eliminate them. It is important to properly clean and maintain your vehicle’s interior for long-lasting freshness.

Q: Can I use vinegar or baking soda to remove odors from my car?

A: Yes, both vinegar and baking soda are natural odor eliminators that can be used on your car’s interior surfaces. However, it is important to dilute the vinegar and to thoroughly vacuum up any baking soda residue.

Q: Can I take my car to a professional detailer for a deep clean?

A: Yes, taking your car to a professional detailer can be a great option for achieving a deep clean and restoring that ‘new car smell’. However, it may be more expensive than cleaning your car yourself.