Cleansing and organizing go hand in hand. Even though some of us actually crave organization in our lives, let’s face it—our car’s are not the first thing we rush to organize in January when we have that ‘let’s get organized’ bug.
With the New Year here, it’s the perfect time to implement an organization system in your vehicle that will help keep your ride tidy all year long.
We all use the interior of our cars differently depending on our lifestyles. If you have kiddos then having an organized vehicle can make or break an afternoon of errands with the kids in tow.
If you are running around from one kids sporting event to the next all weekend long and don’t want to be swallowed up by sporting equipment...an organized car can help.
Maybe you don’t have kids...but no matter how you spend time in your vehicle—working, adventuring, traveling...a little organization goes a long way. Not to mention, an unorganized and messy car can actually lead to safety issues if you’re trying to dig for something while driving.
So let’s dive in!
Clean It Out!
The first step to organizing anything is cleaning it out. Get all your stuff out of your vehicle and separate what comes out into 5 categories:
1. Garbage: Throw away all that trash you find under your seats—don’t forget the lollipops and cookies under your kids’ car seats.
2. Recycle: Recycle empty bottles, extra shopping bags, and any other recyclables you come across.
3. Let Go/Donate: Did you find an old pair of ice skates in your cargo area that don’t fit any child who lives under your roof? You know, the ones that have been there since last winter? Donate them!
4. Put In House: This pile may be the biggest...all the things you’ve been meaning to bring in the house...do it! Receipts, sweatshirts, sandals, summer gear—bring it in the house.
5. Keep In Vehicle: Jumping cables, emergency supplies, and any other staples you keep in your vehicle, keep aside to put back in your vehicle once it’s cleaned out.
Take a few minutes to clean out your glove compartment. Go through and take out old insurance cards, old registrations, and any other irrelevant documents.
It’s always stressful if you get pulled over by the police and you can’t find your current insurance and registration because you have a mile-high pile of paperwork in there.
It’s a good idea to use your glove compartment strictly for the important documents you’ll need in case of an emergency or...if you get caught speeding.
The center console is usually the place folks dump a ton of belongings. You’ll probably find old sunglasses, change, receipts, gum, crumbled wrappers, and God knows what else in there.
Once you’ve emptied your center console, think about the items that you use and need to reach from the driver's seat.
There is usually a built in compartment within your center console for change, use it and don’t store more change than it fits. Sunglasses, a car charger, and anything else you need quick access to while driving should go neatly back in this compartment. Everything else—get it outta there.
When you get to your trunk/cargo space, move through the 5 step clean it out process above. This is the area of your vehicle you’ll most likely have the bulk of stuff to go through.
Be sure to remove all unseasonal items like beach gear, and spring and summer sports equipment.
Your cargo area should be 100% empty when you’re done cleansing it out. Don’t leave anything except perhaps your spare tire which is usually stored in its own compartment.
Once you have emptied everything out of your car, give it a good vacuum and wipe down. Spot treating any gooey spots the kids have left on your seats. You can use cotton swabs with a little rubbing alcohol to get those hard to get crevices.
Set Up Storage Solutions That Will Help Your Car Stay Organized
Now that you have a clean slate, set up some storage solutions that work for your lifestyle and needs. With the right storage solutions in place, you can keep your vehicle clean and organized all year long.
3 Great Systems to Consider for Your Vehicle
1. Cargo Storage Nets
Cargo storage nets are really a fantastic way to keep things neat and organized in your cargo area. Not only can it help corral rouge sporting equipment or grocery bags, but it can eliminate the avalanche of things falling out of the back of your suv every time you open it.
2. Cargo Storage Bins
Although cargo storage bins are made and sold specifically for vehicles, you can easily create a custom storage solution that suits your cargo needs using different sized heavy duty totes.
Totes are great for storing equipment, balls, and grocery bags.
3. Back Seat Pockets
Back seat storage pockets are almost a must have if you have kids. If you ever want to see the surface of your seats, you’ll take this idea seriously!
Kids don’t travel lightly. They pack themselves and all the little things to keep them occupied in the car day after day.
Back seat storage pockets are a great solution. Kids can keep their favorite back seat goodies handy and organized right in front of them, and parents are guaranteed a quiet ride when their kiddos are happily occupied on the road. Win win!
January is a time for renewal. It’s amazing how a little organization can help us feel a little more in control of our lives, especially after a year like 2020. Happy organizing!