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If you have leather upholstery in your car, then you already know it adds a touch of luxury and class to your ride. It’s also no surprise that a leather interior requires a bit of additional care to keep it in top condition. Knowing how to keep your leather cleaned and conditioned is the best way to keep your upholstery in pristine condition.

There are two things that cause most damage to leather seats in a vehicle – the buildup of dirt on the surface and a loss of protectants on the leather.

Cleaning and Conditioning Leather:

It is not possible to give an exact timeframe of how often your leather seats need cleaned and conditioned.  It is mostly dependent on how much the vehicle is used and the amount of sunlight your leather is exposed to.  The best rule of thumb is to stay proactive and at least clean/condition your leather every 3-6 months.

Make sure you always have a micro-fiber cloth or soft diaper cloth in your vehicle.  About once every week, wipe off your seats with a dry cloth to remove all loose dirt particles.  Removing these particles reduces the risk of the dirt getting dragged across the surface of the leather and creating scratches.  When you see a buildup of dirt on the surface (easier to spot on lighter colored leather), you will need to wet the cloth in order to get it clean.  You can use Saddle Soap or a cleaner made specifically for leather to accomplish this task.

After the leather is cleaned, you will need to apply a leather conditioner.  Leather seats in a vehicle should be conditioned every 3-6 months (again, this is depending on usage and exposure to UV rays). The oils in a leather conditioner buildup on the surface of the leather, creating a layer of protection against dirt and UV rays.  The oils also help keep the leather moistened, preventing cracks from appearing in the surface.

Be careful when you are purchasing a leather cleaner.  Read reviews and make sure the cleaner does not contain any harmful silicone ingredients.  Some types of silicone can be harmful to your leather, giving it a slick, oily finish – which attracts dust, dirt and amplifies UV rays. This can cause your leather to dry out and crack.  Reputable companies like Wolfgang or Pinnacle make cleaning and conditioning products for leather.  Just be sure to do your homework, read some reviews on Amazon and use Google to see what people have found works best for them.

At GK’s Custom Polishing, Inc. in Avon, we offer detailing, climate-controlled storage and transporting for cars, boats, RVs, motorcycles and more to the Greater Cleveland area. Along with our comprehensive full detail, we also offer a leather conditioning package along with many other additional services. Give us a call at (440) 937-4457 or email us at to set up your next appointment.