The Inside Of Our Cars Are Probably Dirtier Than Our Toilet

Lex Gabrielle
Unsplash | QIN BENNIE

Many of us own or lease cars and use them on an everyday basis. From driving to work and commuting to driving to friends and family's houses, and even driving our kids around, our cars see a lot of people and a lot of "stuff." Many of us have our morning coffees in the car, or even sometimes an afternoon snack.

Not to mention, we're always on the go in all kinds of weather and seasons. It's safe to say unless we are getting car washes every single week, our cars are not the "cleanest" or most organized places in the world.

Some of us get regular washes.

Unsplash | Clément M.

Some of us are responsible and go for regular car washes, to make sure the outside and inside of our cars are tidy and clean.

However, not everyone wants to continuously pay for car washes, especially when we live in areas where it rains or snows a lot. Knowing the weather will be bad makes us not want to spend the money to get a car wash that will just be obsolete in a few days.

However, the inside of our car oftentimes needs TLC.

Unsplash | Dominik Garbera

When our lives are crazy and chaotic, that can be reflected in the way our cars look and feel. Like, when we are busy and stressed, we may have a messier car than normal.

We throw everything in there and just leave garbage and trash inside, too. We may even hit some fast food drive-throughs and munch on some snacks in there, too.

But, how does the way we treat our car impact the actual "dirtiness" of the car?

Unsplash | Towfiqu barbhuiya

As it turns out, the way in which you treat your car does matter because, well, bacteria can get built up and germs can breed in that car.

You may not think about it because bacteria isn't something you can see, but if you look closely, you'll realize that your car is a lot dirtier than you ever imagined it could be.

A new study indicates that cars are absolutely disgusting.

Unsplash | UX Indonesia

Aston University studied several different cars from "seasoned owners" who use them on a regular and reoccurring basis. They swabbed the cars inside and went through all of the areas to see where the dirtiest areas of the car may be.

And, when examining the cars, it was surprising to see what was in them and how dirty they were.

The "dirtiest" happened to be the trunk.

Unsplash | Andraz Lazic

At the top of the list, the study found that the car's trunk had the highest count of bacteria.

And, second to this was the driver's seat. Following the driver's seat, they found the third most bacteria on the gear stick/shifter. And, then they found the fourth-most in the back seat of the car. Overall, there were high levels of "harmful" bacteria on the inside of all cars.

And, the study also found that inside of cars were "dirtier" than even some toilet seats.

Unsplash | Giorgio Trovato

We've all heard, and we all know, that toilet seats are dirty. We sit down there to, well, poop. So, there's no secret that toilet seats hold some harmful and gross bacteria and germs from splashing poops and behinds.

Well, the study informed us that some car interiors have more bacteria than toilet seats. That's actually disgusting!

The number of bacteria found was also alarming.

Unsplash | Adrian Lange

The study showcased the following data:

1. Trunk - 1,425 bacteria identified 

2. Driver’s seat - 649 bacteria identified 

3. Gearstick - 407 bacteria identified 

4. Back seat - 323 bacteria identified

5. Dashboard - 317 bacteria identified

6. Steering wheel - 146 bacteria identified

7. Toilet seat - 34 bacteria  

Therefore, it is clear that cars have almost 3x as much bacteria as toilet seats. Wow.

I'm sure now you won't be able to forget this.

Giphy | New Girl

Knowing that there are such high numbers counts of bacteria makes you remember all of the times you may have dropped things in the car and then gone to pick them up. For example, we've all dropped a french fry or two in the car, or even something like a straw, but then used it because well—it's our car.

But, we could be putting some germs in our mouths and bodies we had no idea about.

The study's researchers said there are ways to combat this.

Unsplash | Kelly Sikkema

The data collected and found showcased that people need to be regularly cleaning their cars. And, that if your car is older, there is a higher chance that you have a higher count of bacteria, as the car has been more "used" and "lived-in" than newer cars.

Overall, make sure to sanitize and wash your cars.

Unsplash | Towfiqu barbhuiya

Whether or not your car is new or old, the moral of the story and study is simple: regularly wash the inside of your car.

While we may wash the outside to appear and look clean, getting into the inside (even the trunk) is very important to our overall health and the health of our passengers. No one wants to get sick from eating a dropped McDonald's fry off your car's floor!