How to Protect Your Car Trunk From Spills and Stains

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Imagine a car without a trunk. It would lose a large portion of its value without this handy storage area. Not having a trunk means having no place to put groceries, a spare tire, sports gear, suitcases, and other gear. Whether driving around town or on a road trip across the country, mobile storage is vital. Here are tips to help you protect your trunk from spills and stains.

Line your trunk with a tarp

An effective way to protect your trunk from spills is lining it with a plastic tarp. You can buy one at any home improvement or retail discount store. There are even trunk liners available that can be trimmed to fit your car’s specifications.
Many are slip-proof and are usually made of durable plastic that can easily be wiped down if something spills. A tarp or liner will also protect from stains by acting as a barrier between the spill and the trunk’s carpet.

Apply a fabric and carpet protectant

For added protection against stains, apply a fabric and carpet protectant to the inside of your trunk. You simply spray the protectant in a sweeping motion about six inches above the material you want covered. It must dry completely for it to work.
Drying times vary, but typically only takes a few hours. The protectant prevents spills from taking hold and becoming stains. It also makes them easier to clean. For maximum protection, it must be reapplied every year or so, based on manufacturer’s guidelines.

Use a trunk organizer

There a several trunk organizers on the market that come in various shapes and sizes. A quality organizer will be waterproof and have a flat-bottom. Organizers are great for storing key maintenance fluids like extra engine oil, transmission fluid and power steering fluid.
You don’t even have to use a container specifically designed for your trunk. A sturdy plastic laundry basket will work just as well. Plus, it has built-in handles. If you transport your groceries in the basket, you can simply pick it up and carry it inside. If juice spills in it on the way home, it prevents the fluids from getting on the carpet.

Install a cargo net

Cargo nets are great for keeping your items in place and upright. The main reason things spill is because they get tossed around the trunk.
Sometimes you don’t even know an item has leaked until the fluid spoils and starts to stink. There are even deluxe cargo nets with separate compartments so you can keep your purchases separate from things you regularly keep in your trunk.

Clean up any messes right away

As soon as you notice a spill, including dry goods, clean it up right away. The chocolate chips in your trail mix will eventually melt if left too long, soaking into the carpet of your car’s trunk. You can use a hand vacuum or a house vacuum with a long hose to suction up dry messes.
If it’s a wet spill, use a dry cloth to blot up the spill, as not to rub it deeper into the carpet or fabric. The longer the spill sits in your trunk, the greater the chance it will become a permanent stain.
  • Note: If you applied protectant, make sure to reapply it to the area of the spill after you clean it up.
Keeping your car’s trunk free of spills and stains is easier than you think if you follow a few easy-to-do tips. Liners, containers, and cargo nets can contain your groceries and pets while protecting your trunk’s carpet, too. Spray protectants add an extra barrier between a spill and your carpet, making it easier for you to clean. Cleaning a wet or dry spill right away will help deter permanent stains. A clean and organized trunk makes for a happier you.

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