This week in the AMMO Studio, I have a 2007 Hyundai Tucson owned by my friend Jeff who you may remember from the drone catching video. The Tucson was kept in Massachusetts and was occasionally used as a backup car for equipment testing. However, based on the strong odor emanating from the interior and the brown congealed substance on the rubber floor mats, it seems like the Tucson needs an AMMO detail before returning to its important duties.
With my gloves and respirator on, I began by removing everything from the car including the soiled floor mats. I could see the interior needed a general detail but the source of the putrid odor seemed to be the glovebox specifically the HVAC unit. My intuition proved right, as once the glovebox was removed, mouse droppings fell everywhere. Then I made the mistake of removing the fan filter and what seemed like an entire nest fell into the unit. Oh dear…
Since poop hit the fan (literally), I made my way across the street to my neighbor Steve (my mechanic friend) who lectured me on not putting cardboard underneath the filter before removing it. Steve is the man so after busting my chops, he lent a hand removing the HVAC fan and the soiled filter. The filter was soaked with mouse urine and droppings, so I sprayed AMMO Dygest on the fan and filter housing to eliminate all the animal waste bacteria. After several compressed air blowouts, vacuums, and Dygest wipe-downs, the glovebox area was clean and no longer a nasty mouse nest.
Next up, I shampooed the carpets which had some dark set-in stains. It’s important to determine the cause of the stain as you want to use the correct pH level (cleaning power) for their removal. I determined they were oil stains so I used Titan 12 degreaser (pH of 12) which lifted them effectively. There was a night and day difference after which was super gratifying after the mouse nest fiasco.
With the carpets fresh, I turned my focus to cleaning the interior leather and plastics with AMMO Lather, a scrub pad, and interior brush. The Tucson interior was starting to regain it’s old charm as Lather lifted the caked dirt leaving a fresh clean surface. However, the dried mouse urine on the driver’s headrest was giving me chills and required some serious elbow grease to get off. The rest of the interior was a breeze in comparison but I installed an Ozone machine to freshen it further while I worked on the exterior of the Tucson.
On the exterior, I started by spraying AMMO Plum Wheel Cleaner on the rims and agitating with the wheel brush. The agitation of the brush combined with the rinse lifted years of brake dust and grime. The engine compartment also needed some love, and a good spritz of Titan 12 followed by a rinse cleaned it up nicely. Next I power washed the paint and use AMMO Foam through the foam gun for some nice suds.
Now onto the mysterious brown goo that came off in chunks….Gross! My theory is that mouse poop had mixed with the urine and congealed on the rubber floor mat for some time. I cleaned the mats up and left them outside to dry in the hot sun. I moved back to the engine compartment and added AMMO Mud to the engine cover as well as the tires. Because Mud is a water based tire gel, it has a tasteful shine on rubber as well as black plastic trim. With the wheels now gleaming, the final touch was to clean the windows with Obey Glass Cleaner which removed any remaining debris with no streaks. The Hyundai finally looked clean and I was excited for Jeff to see his car in such a revived state.
When Jeff arrived, his reaction was priceless and he couldn’t believe how clean the interior smelled compared to before. For a Hyundai with 240,000+ miles that’s never been detailed, he couldn’t have been happier. So glad to have given this Tucson a new lease on life while helping out a good friend. Thanks for supporting AMMO NYC and stay tuned next week for a crazy super car detail.