Unless you’ve decked out your side by side with a full cab enclosure, your UTV’s interior is going to get dirty. Dust will coat every surface of the interior, and you may find piles of sand on the floor. If you often ride on muddy trails, you’ll find mud caked all over.
Luckily, you don’t have to be too delicate with the interior of a side by side. Most UTVs are okay to hose down, as long as you know which areas to be extra-cautious when spraying with water.
This makes cleaning a UTV interior fairly easy. In this guide, we explain what you need to clean your UTV interior and how to go about it.
What You'll Learn Today
What Do You Need to Clean the Inside of an ATV?
You don’t need anything fancy to clean your UTV’s interior. Any car wash detergent is safe to use with your UTV.
You can also opt for automotive wash designed specifically for off road vehicles such as the Chemical Guys Tough Mudder off road and ATV car wash soap. Slick Products also sells highly-rated off road soap.
Off road soaps are stronger to tackle caked-on mud and tough dirt, but still gentle enough not to corrode your UTV.
Next, choose what you’ll use to spray down the UTV. A hose is the cheapest option for most folks, and you can be sure it won’t damage any part of your vehicle.
A pressure washer does a better job removing mud and dirt, and you can vary the pressure and angle of the spray to achieve different results. But you have to be careful not to use too much pressure and damage some components of your vehicle.
Something else we highly recommend is a foam cannon or gun. If you have a pressure washer, it probably came with one. If you are using a hose, there are foam guns that work with an ordinary garden hose.
You’ll also need microfiber cloths or mitt to scrub surfaces. If your UTV interior often gets muddy, also get a scraper to remove patches of caked on mud.
You may also need a soft brush to remove sand and dust from crevices, or scrub away tough dirt spots.
Though optional, specialized detailing and protection products will go a long way in protecting your UTV interior and keeping it looking new.
These include a protectant spray, windshield cleaner, plastic restorer and so on.
How to Clean the Inside of a Side by Side
Something to note: it’s best to clean the entire UTV at once – both the interior and exterior. You don’t need to clean the inside separately.
Start by removing or covering anything that might be damaged by water. See your vehicle’s manual for instructions on how to safely clean the inside and outside.
Next, spray down the UTV to remove grime, dust, and mud. Don’t use any soap for the initial spray; this is just for removing the worst of the dirt.
Spray the floor and seats of the UTV to wash away any sand and dirt that has piled up. Check if there’s any drain plugs on the floor or sides of the UTV you need to open to let the water out.
The next step is to soap up the UTV, both the inside and outside. The easiest way to do this is using a foam gun attached to a pressure washer or hose.
Alternatively, add the detergent to water in a bucket then use a microfiber mitt to lather up the UTV interior.
Let the soap sit for 3-5 minutes.
Finally, rinse the UTV using a hose or pressure washer. Mud and dirt should easily come off with the soap suds.
If there are any spots left, wash them by hand using soap and a microfiber cloth or mitt, then rinse them.
After rinsing, use microfiber cloths to dry off the water. Do not leave the UTV to air dry as this will leave behind unsightly water spots.
By now, your UTV should be sparkling clean.
The next step is optional, but highly recommended. Use specialized products to protect and detail the interior of the UTV.
A protective spray will keep dirt and mud from sticking to the UTV interior and exterior when you go out, and makes it much easier to wash off.
Plastic and vinyl restorers can do wonders for an old and faded interior.
If you need more help cleaning your UTV interior, watch the video below by The Chemical Guys.
How to Clean a UTV Windshield
Be extra-careful with the windshield. Use a gentle detergent like dish soap or get windshield cleaner formulated specifically for your windshield material.
Polycarbonate windshields have specialized cleaners, and you can get specific soaps for acrylic and glass windshields as well.
Start by rinsing the windshield with a hose to remove dust and dirt. Then apply detergent using a microfiber cloth or sponge. Wash in a side to side motion to avoid dragging dirt across the surface of the windshield.
Rinse off the soap, then dry the windshield by blotting it with a clean microfiber cloth or chamois.
How to Clean UTV Seats
If the seats need a deep clean, it’s best to remove them from the vehicle. Once they are on the ground, brush off any sand and scrap away any caked-on mud.
Use dish soap or any other appropriate cleaner to lather the seats. Then rinse them with a hose, and let them dry.
You can finish by applying an interior polish formulated for your specific seat material.
Don’t forget to clean the seat belts as well. A fabric cleaner or a mixture of dish soap and water will remove smells and stains from the seatbelts.
You’ll need a clamp to hold each seat belt in place once you pull it all out.
How Do I Keep Mud from Sticking To My UTV?
Use a protective spray that coats the UTV and prevents mud and grime from sticking on it. A good spray also makes it easier to clean dirt off the UTV.
For additional interior protection, we highly recommend installing a front and rear windshield. This will reduce how much dust and grime gets into the vehicle.
You can also get a complete cab interior to fully protect the interior.