Skip to content

How to Dry Wet Car Seats: 3 Pro Tips

Rainy day

Chances are, sooner or later, you’ll need to know how to dry wet car seats. And of course you found out they were wet by sitting down first. But what happened? Did you leave the windows down in a rain storm? Did your teen spill 64 ounces of Slurpee on the back bench? Maybe you forgot to close the sunroof. Or the door sealing weatherstrips just aren’t as effective as they once were. It doesn’t really matter how it happened, because you’re stuck dealing with the dampness now.

Don’t sweat it — wet car seats are easy to dry, and there’s more than one way you can un-soak your vehicle’s interior.

1. Get Started With Towels

TowelsFirst thing’s first — you’re going to want to soak up as much liquid as you can with the towels that you have on hand. Forget paper towels (unless that’s all you have), because you’ll want the extra absorbency of bath towels or beach towels so you can really scrub down and get as much water out as possible. Grab a few as it may take more than one towel. Keeping pressing the towel into the seat until the towel no longer picks up additional moisture. Now for the next step.

2. Head to the Local Car Wash

Wait a minute, how is a car wash going to help you figure out how to dry wet car seats? Well, your local car wash can be a huge help if it happens to offer an interior vacuum-cleaning service. Those powerful suckers that you feed quarters into are great for hoovering as much moisture as possible out of fabrics, floor boards and floor mats, and they can do a fine job of taking care of the moisture you weren’t able to soak up the old-fashioned way. Of course a good shop vacuum is also an option.

If you can remove the seats in the process, you should. Many vans and SUVs and more than a few sedans have rear benches or buckets that are easy to pop out. Doing so will get some sunshine and outside air on the fabric, which will help dry things further while you vacuum.

3. Enlist Modern Chemistry

There are a number of products that absorb moisture available to specifically help you deal with situations like this. They’re called desiccants, and they often come in small buckets or packets. You simply leave them on the floor near the wet seat or hang them from the dry cleaning hook above it. If you’re worried about mildew or odors, you can also use a small amount of cleaning product after you’ve done as much drying as you can, but make sure not to add even more moisture to the seat, or you’ll undo all of your hard work.

Wet seats are a pain, but they don’t have to be a disaster.

Check out all the interior products available on NAPA Online or trust one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare locations for routine maintenance and repairs. For more information on how to dry wet car seats, chat with a knowledgeable expert at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store.

Photo courtesy of Morguefile.


Benjamin Hunting View All

Having been bitten by the car bug at a young age, I spent my formative years surrounded by Studebakers at car shows across Quebec and the northeastern United States. Over ten years of racing, restoring, and obsessing over automobiles lead me to balance science writing and automotive journalism full time.  I currently contribute as an editor to several online and print automotive publications, and I also write and consult for the pharmaceutical and medical device industry.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *