How to Clean Car Seat Straps – 6 Best Hacks

Dirty car seat straps? Not anymore. Learn How to Clean Car Seat Straps inexpensively in this short yet helpful guide!

How to Clean Car Seat Straps 1

No matter how careful you are, car seat straps can easily become stained either due to spilled milk, pee, drool, or vomit. If this scenario sounds familiar, then this guide on ‘How to Clean Car Seat Straps‘ is for you.

Fun Fact- According to a survey, American families spend 6% of their waking hours in their car.

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How Car Seat Straps Become Dirty?

Car seat straps can become dirty due to these reasons:

  • Food and Drink Spills: Kids often eat and drink while in the car, which causes spills and stains on the car seat straps.
  • Bodily Fluids: Sweat, drool, and other bodily fluids can soil the straps over time.
  • Accidental Messes: Accidents like a leaking diaper or vomiting can quickly soil not just the car seat but also the straps.
  • General Wear and Tear: Regular use of the car seat straps can lead to general dirt buildup over time.

How to Clean Infant Car Seat Straps?

Besides cleaning infants’ seat straps, these hacks are great for adult car seat belts as well.

1. Dawn Dish SoapHow to Clean Car Seat Straps 2

Dawn soap is designed to break down tough, stubborn substances. That’s why it’s an excellent tool to get rid of vomit stains from the car seat straps.


  • 3-5 Dawn dish soap
  • 1-2 Cups of Warm water
  • A Bowl
  • Sponge
  • A Soft-Bristled Brush
  • Damp Cloth


  1. Add Dawn dish soap to a bowl of warm water. Stir until it’s well combined and soapy.
  2. Dip the sponge into the soapy water. Wring it out slightly, but make sure it’s still fairly wet.
  3. Gently wipe down the straps using the sponge. Be sure to cover all the areas, especially those with visible stains.
  4. If the stains are stubborn, scrub the stained straps with a soft-bristled brush.
  5. Once you’re done, wipe the straps with a damp cloth to remove soap residue. Make sure not to over-soak the straps. Allow the straps to air dry.

2. Use White VinegarHow to Clean Car Seat Straps 3

White vinegar is a great natural cleaning agent thanks to its mild acetic acid content. This acid breaks down stains and removes odors quite easily.


  • White vinegar
  • Warm water
  • Spray bottle
  • White Cloth
  • Paper Towels
  • A Bucket


  1. Mix equal parts of white vinegar and warm water in a bucket.
  2. Transfer the prepared mixture to a spray bottle. Then, spritz the solution on the stained car seat straps.
  3. Allow the solution to sit on the straps for about 10-15 minutes. The acidity in the vinegar will break down the stains during this time.
  4. Next, take a microfiber cloth and scrub the concerned seat straps for a few moments.
  5. After that, rinse the straps with clean water to remove the vinegar solution. Use paper towels to blot the straps and remove excess water. Allow the straps to dry completely.

3. Baking Soda

How to Clean Car Seat Straps 4

Baking soda not only gives stain-free car seat straps but also neutralizes the lurking smell as well. Its abrasive properties make it an excellent cleaner.


  • Baking Soda
  • Lukewarm Water
  • Small bowl
  • Sponge
  • Dry Towel


  1. In a small bowl, stir a cup of baking soda and 1/2 cup of lukewarm water to create a thick paste.
  2. Dip a sponge in this solution and then rub it on the stained spot.
  3. Leave the application on the straps for 10-15 minutes.
  4. After that, gently rub the straps again with a damp cloth to remove the baking soda.
  5. Make sure to dry the car seat straps properly.

4. Baby Shampoo

How to Clean Car Seat Straps 5
shutterstock/Raihana Asral

Baby shampoo is a gentle cleaner that’s safe to use on a variety of materials, including car seat straps. As it doesn’t contain harsh chemicals, it’s a good choice for this type of cleaning task.


  • 5-8 Drops of Baby Shampoo
  • Two Cups of Warm Water
  • A Container
  • Empty Spray Bottle
  • Toothbrush


  1. First, remove the straps from the infant car seat according to the user manual.
  2. Begin the cleaning hack by combining baby shampoo and water in a bowl.
  3. Spray the solution on the car seat straps and run with an old toothbrush momentarily.
  4. After cleaning, wash the straps thoroughly under running water to remove all the shampoo residue.
  5. In the end, put the car seat straps in the sun to dry completely.

5. Rubbing Alcohol

How to Clean Car Seat Straps 6


  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Dawn Dish Soap
  • A Tablespoon of Rubbing Alcohol
  • 3 Cups of Tepid Water
  • Bucket
  • Old Toothbrush


  1. Refer to the infant car seat manual for instructions on how to safely remove the straps.
  2. Prepare the cleaning solution by mixing Dawn dish soap, tepid water, and rubbing alcohol in a bucket.
  3. Soak the stained seat straps in this solution for a minute or two.
  4. Once the waiting period is over, brush the straps gently.
  5. After this treatment, clean the straps with lots of water.
  6. Shake off the excess water and dry the straps properly.

6. Baby Wipes

Baby Wipes
shutterstock/Yevhen Prozhyrko

Cleaning car seat straps with baby wipes is an effective and convenient method, especially for quick cleanups. Here are the steps:


  • Baby Wipes
  • Hair Dryer


  1. Take a baby wipe and gently wipe down the straps, paying extra attention to any areas with concentrated dirt or stains. If a wipe becomes too dirty, use a fresh one.
  2. Dry the straps with a hair dryer.
  3. Baby wipes typically don’t leave a lot of moisture, so the straps should dry relatively quickly.

Note – These cleaning hacks are ideal for all kinds of car seat strap brands, including Britax, Chicco, Graco, Maxi Cosi, and Nuna Rava.

How Often to Clean Car Seat Straps?

In general, it’s a good idea to clean car seat straps whenever they appear visibly dirty or stained. However, thorough cleaning about once a month keeps them in good condition.

How to Clean Car Seat Straps: Precautions to Consider

Here are some precautions to consider while using the above hacks to clean car seat straps:

  • Test a Small Area First: Before applying any cleaning solution to the entire strap, test it on a small, hidden area first. This helps you to ensure the solution won’t discolor or damage the material.
  • Avoid Harsh Chemicals: Certain chemicals can be too harsh for the delicate material of car seat straps, potentially causing them to weaken or break down over time. Stick to gentle, non-toxic cleaners whenever possible.
  • Regular Inspection: After cleaning and drying the straps, inspect them for any signs of wear and tear, such as fraying or weak spots. If you notice any damage, replace the straps to ensure safety.

How to Keep the Car Seat Straps Clean?

Keeping your child’s car seat straps clean is easy with these tips:

  • Don’t wait for the dirt to build up. If you notice a spot or spill on the straps, clean it up immediately.
  • Consider using strap covers because they can be easily removed and washed, making maintaining cleanliness easier.

How to Clean Car Seat Straps: Conclusion

Removing milk, mud, dust, and vomit from car seat straps is a tedious task. However, with the above methods, you can do it quickly and easily without store-bought cleaners.

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