Alcantara is a common synthetic textile material with a comfortable, suede-like microfiber pile. It offers increased and stern grip and is incredibly durable, which makes Alcantara highly sought-after by automotive enthusiasts. Alcantara is commonly used in automotive applications like steering wheel covers, seating, dashboard trim, and headliners. Another reason why many automotive enthusiasts prefer using Alcantara instead of leather to improve their vehicle interior is because it is easy to clean. Alcantara is mostly made of polyester and polyurethane, which make it highly stain and dirt resistant.
While highly resistant to dirt or stains, Alcantara fabric (often referred to as Alcantara leather) can still get stained. To clean stains on Alcantara, you can use the following approaches and tips.
General Alcantara Material Maintenance
Before we dive into techniques for removing stains from Alcantara, we want to share some tips for everyday Alcantara fabric maintenance in general.
Daily Alcantara Maintenance
It is sufficient to dust Alcantara using a soft brush, a dry cloth, or a vacuum cleaner.
Weekly Alcantara Maintenance
After having dusted Alcantara, run a slightly moistened white cotton cloth over it. Avoid the use of printed absorbent cloths or papers as they can release ink onto the material.
Yearly Alcantara Maintenance
If the auto upholstery is removable, it is recommended that you wash it in a washing machine, following the instructions below.
If the auto upholstery is not removable, it is still possible to clean Alcantara by using specialized cleaning products for the fabric. If you do not have such Alcantara-cleaning products, you can follow these steps:
- Dust the material with care.
- Moisten a soft cloth or a sponge in clean water, wring it thoroughly.
- Rub over the whole Alcantara material, making sure not to wet it excessively.
- Rinse the cloth or sponge and repeat as necessary.
- Leave Alcantara to dry overnight.
- Once dry, in order to restore the material, brush it delicately with a soft bristle brush.
General Instructions for Removing Alcantara Stains
If your Alcantara fabric is affected by localized stains, use Alcantara-specific cleaning products. If you do not have Alcantara-specific cleaning products, you can clean the auto upholstery using the following steps:
- Act immediately, ideally within 30 minutes, and begin treating the stain from the outside edge towards the centre to prevent the stain from spreading.
- Never pour a cleaning product directly onto Alcantara.
- Before removing the stain, remove any of the substance that has fallen on the upholstery. If it is a thick substance, such as yoghurt or jam, use a spoon or a plastic spatula. If it is a liquid, use non-printed absorbent paper or a sponge.
- Avoid rubbing to prevent the stain from spreading or going deep into the material.
- Use a white cloth or a well-wrung sponge for the removal of the stains.
- If you use a sponge, rinse it in clean water and wring it well between each wipe.
Removing Water-Soluble Alcantara Stains
It is recommended that you use the specific Alcantara-cleaning products to remove water-soluble stains. If you do not have these specialized cleaning products, you can use water, lemon juice, or pure ethyl alcohol (the type used in liquors and spirits) and follow the instructions below:
- Stains from fruit juice, jam, jelly, syrup, ketchup: Use lukewarm water. Rinse by dabbing with clean water.
- Blood, egg, excrement, urine: Use cold water; avoid warm water because it makes these substances coagulate. Rinse by dabbing with clean water.
- Stains from pop, tea, and alcoholic beverages such as wine, beer, or liquor: Use lukewarm water. If the colour mark remains, treat it with lemon juice and then rinse it well.
- Stains from indelible pencil, cocoa, chocolate, pastry with cream, ice-cream, mustard: Use lukewarm water and rinse by dabbing with clean water.
- Stains from vinegar, hair gel, tomato sauce, coffee with sugar: use lemon juice and then wipe with lukewarm water. Rinse by dabbing with clean water.
Removing Alcantara Stains that Are Not Soluble in Water
It is recommended that you use the specific Alcantara-cleaning products to remove stains that are not soluble in water. If you so not have these Alcantara-cleaning solutions, you can use water, lemon juice or pure ethyl alcohol (the type found in liquors) and follow the instructions below:
- Stains from lipstick, foundation, mascara, eye-shadow, perfume, shoe polish, oil and grease in general, grass stains and felt tip markers in general (including the indelible kind): Rub with ethyl alcohol, then with water and rinse.
- Grass stains and felt tip markers are quite difficult to remove, especially on light colours. It is necessary to act as soon as possible in order to prevent them from becoming too “dry”.
- Stains from chewing-gum and wax: Place a plastic bag full of ice on the stain. When the material becomes hard, remove the pieces and then treat with ethyl alcohol.
Repeat the above treatment steps as often as necessary. Even the stains that are not soluble in water often require to be treated with water afterwards.
Old Stains of Unknown Origin
First off, treat with lukewarm water. Then, rinse by dabbing the stain with clean water. If you see that the stain begins to dissolve in the water, repeat the treatment as often as necessary. Finally, let the stain dry and, if necessary, treat with ethyl alcohol.
We are proud to be the official distributor of Alcantara in North America. if you are looking to purchase Alcantara please visit our online Alcantara store to see the full alcantara collection! We carry everything from Alcantara auto cover, Alcantara auto panel, Alcantara perforation, Alcantara multilayer, Alcantara EXO, and Alcantara aviation!