Car Cover Care


When It's Time to Wash Your Car Cover

Your car cover serves you faithfully, season after season. You count on it to guard your vehicle’s finish from common hazards: dust, moisture, UV radiation, animals and much more. But you must take care of it like it takes care of you. If you’re wondering how to wash car cover, some basic tips can be helpful. You’ll keep it clean and ensure it always delivers the protection you need.  

How To Clean Your Car Cover

Depending on the style of cover you have, you can either wash it by hand or in a washing machine. Your cover’s care instructions should tell you which method to use.  

Machine-washable models include some indoor storage covers such as Customweave and Plushweave. Some outdoor covers, like Ultraweave and Supremeweave, can also be washed in a machine. But you’ll need to use a front-loading commercial washing machine – don't try to wash it in a standard home or top-load machine. Add either the recommended amount of laundry detergent powder or ¼ cup of Simple Green diluted in 1 cup of water. We recommend using either the gentle or delicate cycle for your cover. Be sure to run the rinse cycle at least twice with your cover inside the machine. 

Washable car cover styles also include Car Capsules. Made from a durable clear PVC top cover and base, Car Capsules inflate and create a cushion of air around your vehicle. You’ll want to follow Car Capsule’s instructions for cleaning them. With other non-machine washable covers, you can use a simple handwashing process:  

  • Pull your car cover over your vehicle and stretch it tight. 
  • Using your garden hose, spray your cover.  
  • With a mild detergent and sponge, scrub the cover. 
  • Rinse your cover with the hose and remove it from your vehicle. 
  • Hang the cover to dry.  

Do's and Dont's of Cleaning Your Car Cover

When caring for your car cover, you should keep in mind some additional pointers. First, never dry-clean your car cover. Special solvents in the dry-cleaning process can ruin your car cover’s fabric. You should also avoid using fabric softeners on your car cover because they weaken the cover’s water resistance. Finally, never use hot water. With these tips and your cover’s care instructions, you’ll get solid protection and value for years to come.  

The method for cleaning a car cover varies from material. Please follow our guidelines below to make sure your car cover is cleaned properly.

Do: Check your fabric care guide that was sent with your car cover for best results.
Don't: Clean a car cover in a washer with a center agitator.
Don't: Use fabric softener
Don't: Put a non-woven or specialty car cover material in the dryer.

Custom-fit California Car Covers protect your car, rain or shine. We pride ourselves on customer service, so contact us today to make a purchase or with questions regarding your cover's care.


Fabric Machine Cleaner Water Temp. Machine Air Dry
Customweave H or C PD/SG Cold Medium Heat  
Dustop Commercial SG Cold   X
Multiweave Commercial SG Cold   X
NOAH Commercial SG Cold   X
Plushweave H or C PD/SG Cold Medium Heat  
Satin Fleece H or C PD/SG Warm   X
Softweave H or C PD/SG Cold Medium Heat  
Stormweave Commercial SG Cold   X
Sunbrella Commercial SG Warm Medium Heat  
Superweave H or C PD Warm High Heat  
Superweave HD Commercial PD Warm High Heat  
Ultraweave H or C PD Warm High Heat  
Machine Type: (H) = Large home sized top-load with/without agitator (C) = Commercial or Large home front load, no agitator
Cleaner: (PD) = Powder Detergent, No Bleach or Fabric Softener (SG) = Simple Green 1/4 Cup in 1 Cup Water


  1. Place the cover in a largest washing machine available. Extra-large cover, for vehicles such as SUV and pickup trucks, in any fabric should always be washed in large commercial, front load machines.
  2. Use the GENTLE cycle, if available.
  3. Wash according to the above chart for appropriate cleaner and machine settings
  4. Rinse the cover twice (2x) with water only to remove all of the cleaner.
  5. Dry according to chart.


Note: BEFORE USING A COVER, here are some Important Suggestions:

TOWING – Car Covers are not designed for use when towing. Serious damage can occur to the car cover and the paint surface of the vehicle may also be damaged. If you use a car cover for outer towing, please do so at your own risk 

REPAINTED VEHICLES – Use of a car cover on any recently painted surface may cause damage to that surface as the paint needs time to cure (your painter can recommend a good time to start using your car cover and even to wax your new paint for the first time). 

HIGH WIND AREAS – When using a car cover in high wind areas (and for prolonged storage), use the loops and rope provided to securely pull the cover tight under the center of the car. This should be done even if the optional lock and cable is being used. A car cover is not designed to replace a garage and should be checked for flapping in high winds. If wind gets under the car cover, it can cause it to work loose and come off the vehicle. A helpful and suggested product for high wind areas is the Gust Guard Clamp System. 

FREEZING WEATHER – In very rare cases when a heavy rainstorm is followed by an extreme temperature drop to below freezing, it is possible for a car cover to become frozen to a layer of ice created between the vehicle body and the cover. Do not attempt to remove the cover if this happens. If it is necessary to remove the cover, we recommend pouring warm water over the vehicle and slowly removing the cover, taking care to inspect the surfaces of both the car cover and the vehicle during the removal process. Stop immediately if you encounter resistance – the ice has not been melted completely and you must pour more warm water over the vehicle. 

HAZING OF WINDOWS AND PAINT – Airborne pollutants may be deposited on the windows or paint while a vehicle is being driven or when parked uncovered. These deposits may become smeared and create a haze when the car cover is used. The haze can be wiped off with a damp cloth or washed off with water. Please see our Golden Shine Car Care Products if you need a quick detail spray or glass cleaner for fast clean up.