Best car cleaning products 2023: Everything you need to clean your vehicle

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The best car cleaning products are key to keeping your vehicle spotless all year round. However, finding the right selection of products can be tough.

Fortunately, we've put together a list of what we believe to be some of the essentials to kit out a complete car cleaning arsenal based on each product's price, reviews, and anything else that makes them stand out from the crowd.


We've made sure to focus on general cleaning kits as well as specific products, like car wax and even one of the best pressure washers, to ensure you have all the tools you need to achieve a pristine finish both inside and out.

So if it's an all-in-one selection you're after, like Meguiar's Complete Car Care Kit, or you're after a specific product, like this Turtle Wax Original Car Wax formula featured in our list of the best wax for black cars, then we've got you covered.

We've also answered some of the most commonly asked questions surrounding car cleaning products to help you figure out what you need to clean your specific vehicle. With that in mind, let's get into it...

Best car cleaning products

Best car cleaning kit - Meguiar's Complete Car Care Kit

Best car cleaning products Meguiar's Complete Car Care Kit product image of a selection of bottles, clothes, and other car cleaning products.
Credit: Meguiar's

Meguiar's Complete Car Care Kit looks to be the ultimate solution to all your car cleaning problems as it comes with an entire range of products to help you achieve a showroom finish.


In fact, you get 12 products in total in the collection. This includes both interior and exterior cleaning formulas, liquid wax, tire gel, glass and plastic solutions, and even Meguair's ScratchX 2. 0 to remove imperfections in the bodywork of your vehicle.

The kit also contains clay bars to lift surface contaminants and various microfibre cloths and foam applicators to ensure you have everything you need to complete a comprehensive cleaning of your car.

On the whole, Meguiar's care kit looks to be an excellent option to consider if you're in need of a full collection of cleaning essentials.

Best car cleaning shampoo - Autoglym Bodywork Shampoo Conditioner

Best car cleaning products Autoglym Bodywork Shampoo Conditioner product image of a white bottle with a green label and cap.
Credit: Autoglym

If you're after just a cleaning agent though, then this Autoglym Bodywork Shampoo Conditioner could be the product for you.


AutoGlym boasts its formula delivers a deep clean with a low amount of foam residue which, in turn, should make it easy to rinse off without leaving any streaks.

Moreover, the solution has been designed to maintain any polish or wax you may have previously applied, thus helping your car stay spotless for longer.

It's also worth noting that just one capful can be used per 10L of water, meaning this particular 2.5L bottle should last, making it, in our opinion, excellent value for money and one of the best car shampoos around.

Best car cleaning wax - Turtle Wax Original Car Wax

Best car cleaning products  Turtle Wax Original Car Polish product image of a green bottle with a white and red label next to blue, yellow, and red microfibre clothes.
Credit: Turtle Wax

Once you've finished cleaning, the next step is to wax. So, if you're in need of a top product for the job, then look no further than Turtle Wax's Original Car Wax formula.

Unlike some of the best car wax sprays, this is a liquid solution designed to deliver a deep, showroom-like shine with its mix of synthetic and rich carnauba ingredients for long-lasting protection.

Turtle Wax's Hard Shell Finish is also said to be reliable in all weather conditions. So come rain, wind, or snow, the Turtle Wax's Original Car Wax looks like it has you covered.

You also get three microfibre cloths here, giving you everything you need to apply and buff out the wax yourself.

Best car cleaning pressure washer - Karcher K5 Premium Pressure Washer

Best car cleaning products Karcher K5 Premium Pressure Washer product image of a yellow and black machine.
Credit: Karcher

Whether you're going for a deep cleaner or just a quick once over, we feel there's no better way to save yourself some time than a top pressure washer like this Karcher K5 Premium bit of kit.


It comes with a patented water-cooled induction motor and non-corrosive N-COR pump that's designed to deliver 2000 PSI of power, making it ideal for cleaning more than just your vehicle.

Moreover, you get a Vario Power spray wand for lighter jobs like intricate bodywork, and a Dirt Blaster spray wand for superior cleaning performance on tough-to-clean surfaces.

With its kink-resistant 25" hose as well, the Karcher K5 Premium Pressure Washer really does stand out from the crowd when it comes to pressure washers for your car.

Best car cleaner for alloy wheels - Bilt Hamber Auto Wheel Cleaner

Best car cleaning products Bilt Hamber Auto Wheel Cleaner product image of a white bottle with a blue spray applicator.
Credit: Bilt Hamber

We've featured Bilt Hamber Auto Wheel Cleaner in our list of the best alloy wheel cleaners, so it may come as no surprise we're including it again here.


What we like about this product, in particular, is that its unique colour-changing formula can help you identify every single inch of dirt on your wheels.

From there, simply hose down or wipe away the water-soluble solution and you should be left with spotless alloys once again.

The formula also contains ingredients that react to oxidising surfaces to help you remove rust and reduce the size of embedded particles such as brake dust.

Ultimately, we feel there's a lot to like about this Bilt Hamber Auto Wheel Cleaner, hence its inclusion on our list.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Cleaning your car can be tricky at times, so finding the right products for the job can sometimes result in confusion. Don't worry though, we've answered the most frequently asked questions right here.

What are the essential car cleaning products?

Out of all the products available, we'd argue the most important to have in your cleaning arsenal is something to clean the paintwork of your car.

Top car shampoos, for example, are a great option to consider as they target any dirt, surround it, then suspend it in water so it can easily be rinsed off.

This leads us to our next item which is a pressure washer. While it may not be essential, we'd argue that the time a pressure washer saves in rinsing off your vehicle is valuable as it allows you to spend more time waxing and polishing, for instance, for a more complete showroom finish.

We'd therefore recommend a good wax and polish, plus products to clean your wheels and windows as well so every inch of your vehicle is left spotless.

What should you not use to clean your car?

Any harsh chemicals and cleaning solutions we'd generally recommend you avoid as this could damage your car's paintwork.


This includes most household cleaning agents such as hand soap, dishwashing detergent, and glass cleaners as they may remove the protective layer of wax over the bodywork, which may eventually strip away the paint as well.

Instead, make sure you stick to dedicated car cleaning products, although you do have to make sure they're suitable for the material and paint of your particular vehicle.

Can you clean your car in the sun?

Although you can clean your car in the sun, we'd advise against it as the intense heat may cause your cleaning products to dry before you have a chance to wash them off.

This, in turn, may leave streaks on the paintwork of your vehicle from the dried residue from the cleaning solutions.

If you do end up cleaning your car in the sun, then we'd recommend working panel by panel to reduce the likelihood of the products drying out.

Can you clean your car in the rain?

There are several pros and cons to cleaning your car in the rain, the first pro being you won't need to pre-rinse your car if you're looking for a complete, intense clean of your vehicle.


Rain should also greatly reduce the chance of you leaving water streaks or spots from the leftover residue of your cleaning products. Moreover, rain acts as a natural way of rinsing off your shampoo post-wash which, in turn, can help you save water.

That said, if it's raining whilst you're trying clean, then you may struggle to actually apply any shampoo to your car as the weather might simply wash all your hard work away before it has a chance to remove the dirt.

Moreover, rainwater isn't always completely clean. When rain forms in the clouds, it tends to combine with pollutants in the air and sometimes even dust. As a result, you may find your car covered in a fine layer of dust or debris despite your efforts to clean it.

How do you clean the inside of your car?

There are several techniques for cleaning the inside of your vehicle, with the main focus being on cleaning the upholstery.

According to Armor All, the first step is to thoroughly vacuum every inch of your vehicle's interior. Opting for a car vacuum cleaner should ensure any loose dirt or debris is removed before you begin to tackle tough stains.

Next, apply an upholstery cleaner of choice as per the manufacturer's instructions. Check out our list of the best car upholstery cleaners or car leather cleaners to help you find the right cleaning product for you.


Take a soft-bristled brush and begin to work the formula into the stain in circular motions, being careful to use as little water as possible during the cleaning process.

Make sure you start drying the cleaned areas with paper or a towel before vacuuming again with a wet/dry vacuum to give your interior a head start before you leave it to air out.

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