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The coronavirus pandemic has created a havoc across the planet; here are some easy ways to disinfect your ride and contain the COVID-19 spread
Coronavirus cases are steadily increasing across the globe. Even though India is in the preliminary stage two with a few hundred cases so far, we cannot downplay the contagious nature of this virus. Thankfully, small and preventive measures can help us contain any potential threat from this pandemic. If you’re a petrolhead who cannot stay away from your four wheels, make sure you follow these steps before you let those horses lose. Here are a few ways to go about it.
Not only COVID-19, but other harmful germs and bacteria can also latch onto surfaces. Make sure to use disinfecting wipes to clean surfaces on your car that are frequently touched – door handles, steering wheel, gear knob, touchscreen infotainment system, grab handles, arm rests, and even the push start-stop button. Brands like Lysol offer multiple options for household use and you can apply them on your car’s surfaces as well to eliminate germs on the go.
There are multiple ways to get this done. The best way however of cleaning the cabin of your car is by spraying disinfectant onto a micro-fibre cloth instead of spraying it directly onto the surfaces. Doing the latter might damage the electronic systems if the liquid seeps through the gaps and pores. Sprays from Lysol, 3M and Autoglaze are available on e-commerce websites, but if you have a homegrown formula, you can use that too, given that its diluted enough. A highly acidic solution can spoil expensive looking surfaces of your car. Sanitizers with over 60 per cent alcohol too can be used to clean the interiors of your car.
Disinfection of your car’s HVAC system (heating, ventilation and air-conditioning) is of absolute importance for complete disinfection of the cabin. The air vents and ducts can harbour germs and viruses that can eventually enter the cabin when you switch on the AC. You can spray these anti-germ fluids directly into the duct to kill these organisms and restrict their growth. Make sure you switch the blower off before spraying and switch it on after a few minutes to allow the droplets to dry out. You can also clean the cabin air filter by yourself, but make sure to take a demo from an authorised service center before opting for complete DIY.
Wash your hands, multiple times a day, with soap and water or alcohol-based solutions like sanitizer. Remember that COVID-19 is also transmitted via surfaces and if an infected person touches the door handles or seats of your car, some studies suggest that the virus can stay there for as long as nine days before dying out. Also follow good respiratory hygiene by covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or a tissue when you cough and sneeze. Then dispose the used tissue immediately.
Other measures like social distancing are also vital. Avoid crowds as much as possible and if traveling in your car with multiple people is unavoidable, make sure that your fellow passengers follow the hygiene protocols. Use the aforementioned methods to disinfect the vehicle once you reach your destination and everyone on board hops out. In case of emergency, where you have to ferry an affected person in your car, make sure they’re sitting in the rear seat alone with their nose and mouth covered while you drive them to the hospital.
Also, do not take the liberty of using empty roads for drag races and follow traffic rules as you would under normal circumstances. Stay home, do your own bit and follow the guidelines on health and safety so that we can overcome this contagion with collective effort. Self-quarantining is also a great opportunity to educate yourself on becoming a better motorist and also catch up on some high-octane films for petrolheads that we have listed down for you here.