My Car Quest

February 23, 2024

How To Clean Sensitive Electrical Components In Your Car

Based on information by the NHTSA, close to 20% of all traffic accidents in the USA are caused by poor car maintenance or lack of. Around 45,000 accidents every year are caused by vehicle malfunction. Data suggests that around 9,000 accidents could be avoided by performing simple maintenance tasks on our vehicles. Since cars are becoming more complex technologic hubs and electronics is the most overlooked part when servicing cars, here’s a resource for you to learn how to properly clean the sensitive electrical components inside and outside your car.

Cleaning Your Car’s Interior Electronics

Interior electronics in a car often play a crucial role in navigating the car’s amenities, finding routes, and entertainment. When they are covered with grime, bacteria, and dirt and not cleaned often, they tend to malfunction. Thus, to properly clean your interior electronics, you need to follow very simple steps.

First, you need to pre-clean electronic components using a soft and natural bristle brush, and you need to gently brush away dirt, dust, and accumulated grime. If you overlook this step, you might make matters worse by applying a cleaning solution to a dirty surface. When you’re done, use a dedicated car interior cleaner to deep clean the surface of your car’s interior electronics. As a tip, if you can find a product that features UV protection, you’ll be doing more than cleaning your car; you’ll be protecting it. The right product will not leave any residue behind.

Pay Extra Attention to the MAF Filter

The MAF filter sensor monitors the amount and temperature of the air entering your engine. It is paramount to have the correct air/fuel flow in your car, ensuring optimum fuel management. Therefore, cleaning the MAF sensor is critical for your car’s performance. Some of the symptoms of a dirty MAF filter can be longer cranking time when starting the car, stalling, jerking during acceleration, and rough idling, among many others. That being said, cleaning it will very likely solve every issue listed above. Furthermore, regular cleaning can help you avoid these symptoms entirely.

According to Low Offset, to clean your MAF filter properly, you’ll need some tools, such as a Mass Airflow Sensor Cleaner and a towel, and you need to ensure that the engine has cooled down before you begin. The first step is finding the sensor– read your car’s manual if you’re unable to locate it. Once you’ve found it, unplug it from the car’s electrical system, and loosen whatever brackets or clamps hold it into place. Once you’ve got the sensor (watch out because they tend to be very fragile), put it on a clean, dry towel and apply cleaner to it. Spray the solution directly onto the hot wires, but don’t let anything touch the wires while cleaning them. Re-assemble the MAF sensor and allow it to dry before turning the engine on.

Cleaning the Self-Parking Sensor

Self-parking sensors utilize ultrasonic waves to sense the distance between the car and a certain object. If they are covered with mud, for example, they might confuse that with a close surface leaving them useless for the driver. As a result, if you’re used to parking using them and they’re out of service, you’ll be doing it blindly which can lead to accidents.

To avoid this, the best way to clean a parking sensor (usually located on bumpers) is to use a microfiber cloth, warm water, and car shampoo. Simply sink the microfiber cloth in shampoo water and rinse. Then, using the damp microfiber in circular movements, make sure to wipe the parking sensor to get rid of all the dirt on it.

Keeping the electronic components of your car in working conditions will not only make every journey better, but can also help save lives. Indeed, by investing a small amount of time regularly in performing maintenance, you can have a problem-free ride for years. Don’t overlook electronic maintenance and enjoy your car like never before.


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