The big clean

I expected that the van would need a good clean before any work started on it but I don’t think I really comprehended what a massive job this would be until it was sat on my drive. It looked and smelt like it hadn’t been properly cleaned in its whole 15 years of existence, and I couldn’t wait to get it back to its former glory.


I removed some of the plastic trims and steps to get a better look at what needed to be done. The more I removed the more dirt and grime I uncovered. And from the looks of it, the previous owner may have been a gardener. The amount of soil that had built up over the years was crazy.

I had already wiped over the dashboard and door cards before taking any pictures which is why they look relatively clean compared to the rest but they were also covered in grime.

As I’m not currently driving the van, I thought it would be a good time to remove a lot of the interior so I can really get into all the hard to reach areas and give it a deep clean. This would also enable me to clean the cab floor mat separately to give it the proper clean that it needed.


As you can see this uncovered more grime. However the metal floor was in good condition which meant no severe rust that would bring delays. There was a small amount of rust on the passenger side foot step which I sanded down and treated. I forgot to take pictures of this but it was nothing major.

I used a few different cleaning products along the way to see what would work best. For the dashboard and door cards I started off using hot soapy water, it worked ok but required a lot of elbow grease. In the end I settled on Tesco multi purpose citrus cleaner which can be diluted or used neat. This was dirt cheap and worked well as you can see from the following images.


I already had a carpet cleaner sat in the garage but if you don’t have one, I would highly recommend investing in one. They can be picked up pretty cheap so you’ll save money from hiring them. I used mine to clean the seats and the roof lining. The seats were really bad so I went over them twice, I will be covering them at some point in the future so the main goal was to just get them smelling fresh.

Once that was complete, it was time for the floor mat. Again I used the multipurpose cleaner, using a large scrubbing brush to rub it in and lift off the dirt. I also used a jet washer to blast a lot of the mud away. The floor mat has a foam inside and upon removing it from the van some of the waterproof backing ripped off (pretty sure theres no way of preventing this) this meant that the foam was exposed and soaked up a lot of water. Bit of a pain but I had to leave the mat to dry for about a week. Once dry it was finally time to put everything back together.



To give all the plastic and rubber a new shiny finish I used ‘Autoglym vinyl and rubber care’. Slightly pricey but worth every penny, as you can see the floor mat looks almost new.

That concludes the big clean so far. The next jobs will be:

  • Insulate cabin roof
  • refit cabin roof lining and trim
  • deep clean the back

Hit the follow button to stay up to date with my progress.

The project continues,




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