When it comes to the best air fresheners for cars I personally prefer using the Little Trees Classic Scents.
I really like the different scents there are and I find them to be quite effectively at keeping the car smelling nice and fresh as long as they’re being used properly.
I also really like and would recommend the Febreze Car Vent-Clip Air Fresheners because they can be clipped onto the vent and will fill the car up with a pleasant scent once it’s turned on and air is flowing.
The laundry one is amazing and there are a few different scents to choose from as well.
Keep on reading to check out the rest of my recommendations!
Spending a lot of time in the car, whether you’re commuting every day, driving the kids around, or you just love being in your vehicle, can lead to it smelling quite unpleasant.
These unpleasant smells often become noticeable after damp and rainy days and if you’re not taking the time to clean your car or have it cleaned on a regular basis it can get pretty odorous in there.
Sure, the best way to prevent the car from smelling is to clean it regularly, but what if you don’t have time for that?
Well, that’s what car air fresheners are for and with so many different kinds to choose from it’s possible to always have your car smelling nice and fresh the moment you open the door and pop in to head out for a drive.
The problem is that with so many different fresheners to choose from it can be hard to know which ones work well and which should be avoided.
The Best Car Air Freshener
Today I want to talk about some recommendations for what I believe make great choices for the best car air freshener as well as cover a few helpful tips when it comes to making an informed decision.
Little Trees® Assorted Air Freshener Classic Scents
You’ve definitely seen them hanging off of the mirror in a car driving by and it’s the Little Trees® Assorted Air Freshener Classic Scents that are one of my top recommendations for the best car freshener.
Ever since I was young I always remember seeing these trees hanging in my parents car and as I grew up and started driving my own car I always use them in mine as well.
I like the assorted pack of classic scents because it comes with a range of different scents to choose from and this way I don’t get as bored of smelling the same thing week after week.
Each pack comes with 4 Little Trees of a different scent and you’re able to get 6 scents in a pack to enjoy.
The different scents provided include:
- Royal Pine
- New Car Scent
- Black Ice
Should you not be interested in these aromas there are also quite a few other options to choose from depending on your preferences and it’s possible to buy a dedicated pack of 24 of a single scent if that’s what you want.
For these to work effectively you’ll have to hang them on something, such as the rearview mirror, or even on the emergency brake like I do, and make sure not to rip off the bag all at once.
You’re only supposed to ripped the package in a little bit and then pull out the tree a little bit at a time over the period of a few weeks so that you’re able to maximize the great smell that gives off without having the entire car smell good for just a few days.
I really love these air fresheners and considering they’re quite unobstructive, lightweight, and reasonably priced I would definitely recommend checking them out if you want your car to smell like a nice and fragrance scent of your choice.
Febreze Car Vent-Clip Air Fresheners
My girlfriend really loves these Febreze Car Vent-Clip Air Fresheners and I can’t say that I mind the fresh laundry smell in my car that they give off myself.
These fresheners give off quite a strong scent and although they’re meant to be clipped onto the air vents they work whether or not the air is turned on or off.
The car definitely smells much stronger with the scent when the air is blowing but even when I open the door after the car has been sitting for an extended. Of time I can still smell the fragrance quite strongly.
These little guys are quite small and feature a clip that you just use to clip onto the vents in your car and there’s a little tab in the back that you have to push for it to start working and for the clip to be able to hold it up properly.
One thing I find is that it’s a good idea to the vents in the backseat or ones that aren’t blowing on your face because sometimes the fragrance can be quite strong and it gets annoying after awhile.
As long as it’s not blowing directly on my face then I don’t have a problem with it and overall I quite love how these make my car smell so fresh and clean.
Personally, I really like the linen and sky scent but there are also a few different fragrances to choose from depending on your preferences.
On the package it says you’re able to enjoy up to 120 days of use and while I’ve never been able to use them this long they still last quite a while and I find that 4 of them are definitely worth it to use for a few weeks at a time each.
Moso Natural Air Purifying Bag
The Moso Natural Air Purifying Bag takes on a unique approach when it comes to getting your car smelling fresh and clean.
One interesting feature I like about this freshener is that it doesn’t have to just be used in the car and it can be moved around and used in other areas throughout the home, garage, office, and even in an RV or trailer.
The way it works is by taking advantage of the ingredient that it’s filled with, Moso bamboo charcoal, and this natural ingredient basically acts like a huge sponge purifying the air around it.
It’s covered in large pores and as air passes through these pores the odors, bacteria, and allergen particles are trapped in the surface where they aren’t able to leave their unpleasant odor behind for you to smell.
Rather than using any unusual or harmful chemicals to artificially make the air smell better the Moso Natural Air Purifying Bag just takes advantage of a natural component that works in your favor.
Another big plus of this is that it’s chemical-free, non-toxic, and it’s safe to use in the car or home around your pets and kids.
It’s stated that it’s possible to take advantage of up to two years of use with this nifty little air freshener and only once a month it should be placed outside in the sun so that the UV rays can clear out the pores of the charcoal so that it’s able to start absorbing the air again.
The 200 gram bag covers the space of up to 90 square feet, which is perfect for the inside of a car or truck, and apart from absorbing odors it’s also great for preventing mold and bacteria from forming as it helps to prevent an excessively moist environment inside your car.
This is a really interesting and unique way to freshen the air in your car and while it won’t give you a fragrant, unnatural scent it’s still a product I would recommend considering as it’s non-toxic, free from harmful chemicals, and pretty neat to use.
Meguiar’s G16402 Whole Car Air Refresher Odor Eliminator
The Meguiar’s G16402 Whole Car Air Refresher Odor Eliminator offers yet another way of getting rid of unwanted odors on the inside of your vehicle so that you’re able to enjoy a fresh-smelling car.
The way it works is by taking advantage of an aerosol mist that’s able to move through the ventilation system and reach all of those small and tricky areas in the car where unwanted odors can linger unless they’re properly dealt with.
When used correctly it’s able to get rid of those unpleasant odors such as a cigarette smoke, any stench from leaving your gym gear in the car, and even wet dog smell from a damp or musty interior.
The way it works is by taking advantage of a odor eliminating mist that’s able to penetrate throughout the entire interior of your vehicle.
To use it properly you need to turn the car on and turn the fans to high while making sure all of the windows are closed.
After that you just activate the locking trigger of the Meguiar’s G16402 Whole Car Air Refresher Odor Eliminator and place it in the center of the car while making sure to close the doors behind you.
Then you just simply leave the doors closed for 15 minutes, after this time has elapsed you can get in turn off the vehicle and then let it air out for another 15 minutes.
After following the instructions all of the unwanted odors should have been eliminated and the car will be left smelling fresh and it’s possible to enjoy that new car scent for the following weeks.
I quite like this air freshener device because I don’t have to leave it hanging in the car somewhere and I never have to remember to replace it, I just use a new one every few weeks especially in the winter when the interior of the car gets quite damp and full of moisture.
One thing to keep in mind is that it’s a good idea to wash the interior of your car, clean the carpets beforehand, and vacuum up any debris or stains just to make sure that this freshener is able to work effectively
California Scents Organic Air Freshener Canister
The California Scents Organic Air Freshener Canister is another one that I remember from my childhood and even up to this day my mom is still using it in her car.
This is a neat little air freshener and it comes in a small canister where are you’ll find a fiber pad that’s infused with a fragrance on the inside.
For it to work the tab part on the top of the canister needs to be removed so that the scent is able to penetrate the interior of the car and it’s possible to open it a short amount at a time to take full advantage of the effectiveness of the scent, or it could turn out to be too overwhelming.
My personal favorite is the cherry scent and every time I open the door to my moms Acura I’m hit with the pleasant fruity smell of the cherry and each canister lasts up to 60 days of use.
Car Air Fresheners Buyers Guide
These days there are quite a few different options to choose from when it comes to car air fresheners.
This buyer’s guide is meant to help you compare the different types available as well as make a more informed decision on which fresheners are the best suited for your needs.
The Types of Air Fresheners for Cars
One popular type of air freshener are the aerosol sprays that come in a can and are designed to be sprayed directly onto vehicle surfaces such as the carpets, floor mats, and seats.
The problem with these is that they can sometimes leave a residue that you’re going to have to wipe off and although they’re fast-acting they’re not that well-suited for long term use.
I would recommend checking out the aerosol sprays if you’re looking to do some spot spraying after your pets or kids have left the car and you just want to quickly help reduce any of the odors left behind.
Hanging cardboard, such as the Little Tree fresheners, come in a variety of different shapes and sizes and they all work in a very similar way.
There’s usually a string at the top part of the piece of cardboard and this makes it possible to hang it from any surfaces such as the rearview mirror or on to the emergency brake and while it’s hanging it’s releasing a scent into the air.
With these fresheners it’s not a good idea to let them sit on the dashboard since they could potentially discolor the dashboard material.
With the hanging cardboard ones it’s possible to get anywhere between two weeks and six weeks of use and I find them to be very cost-effective and along with all of the different scents and shapes to choose from I would definitely recommend checking them out as a quick and effective way and making your car smell better.
Ventilation sticks are a small little device that’s meant to be attached to the air vents in your car buy a small pin that’s built into the freshener.
It’s very easy to slide them onto the vent dividers and as the air blows through the vents and it passes through the vent stick it fills the interior of the vehicle with a pleasant fragrance.
Depending on how often you’re driving and the strength of the air you’re using it’s possible to enjoy the vent sticks for anywhere between 2 to 4 weeks until they should be replaced.
To make them easier to use that can be found in packages of two or more vent sticks and I would really only recommend using one at a time so that the scent isn’t too overpowering.
Plug-in fresheners are ones that are designed to plug into the power outlet (cigarette lighter) in your car.
The way they work is by utilizing an oil-based fragrance where the pleasant scents are released as the oil becomes warmed up.
These are quite easy to use, simply plug it in and you’re good to go, they last a decent amount of time, and they’re great for helping to combat against any strong odors you might find inside your car.
These are quite a new addition to what I recently discovered when it comes to car air fresheners.
The way they work is by using a wick that’s placed inside a fragrance bottle and that gives off a pleasantly smelling scent over a set period of time, usually up to 30 days or more.
Some people find that these are quite strong for small vehicles and they’re very well suited for larger vehicles like RVS, vans, and trucks.
I find that these are quite pricey compared to some of the other air fresheners available for cars although they last quite a while and it is quite strong so it’s a good idea for those with very odorous vehicles.
It’s likely that you’ve seen gel fresheners in someone’s bathroom before and the idea is the same when it comes to working inside the car.
These typically comes in a small can or canister where on the inside is a fragment gel that gives off a pleasant smell over a set period of time.
There are also a few types available that are simply stuck onto the surface of the dashboard or anywhere else inside the car.
Similar to the gel fresheners the ones that come in a can work similarly and they’re available in a wide variety of different scents as well as being quite easy to use in the car.
There’s usually a fiber pad or other porous material inside a can that’s doused in a fragrance scent and once the can is opened the scent starts to fill the inside of the car.
These are a suitable choice as they can be placed on a flat surface out of the way such as under the seats, in the trunk, or even in the rear armrest.
Some cans even come with a vented lid that makes it easier to control the amount of fragrance getting let out into the vehicle.
Electronic ionizers work more as an air purifier rather than an air freshener that fills the car with a fragrant scent.
They work by removing odors from the air through a purification process and for them to be powered up they are typically plugged into the cigarette lighter.
When it comes to these ionizers there are two types to choose from, an ozone producing one and a filtering one.
Both of these different types have their advantages and drawbacks and it’s important to remember that with one of these you’re actually helping to remove the odors rather than covering them with a pleasant scent.
It’s possible to use a dedicated air freshener in conjunction with an ionizer and this is a good idea if you want the air in your car to be cleaned as well as smelling fresh and fragrant.
This is another type of car air freshener that I recently discovered and the way it works is by using a piece of paper fabric that’s infused with oil fragrance.
They can be placed in a variety of locations throughout the car and while they give off quite a pleasant smell they don’t seem to last as long as some of the other options available.
What’s the Best Air Freshener for Car Use?
Ultimately it comes down to your personal preferences and what it is you’re trying to achieve with how the inside of your car smells.
I recommend trying a few different types of fresheners to see which ones you like the best and which ones work the most effectively for your preferred fragrance requirements.
Like I previously mentioned it’s a good idea to thoroughly clean the interior of your car and spot clean any problem areas before hoping that a freshener will get rid of all the smells just so that it has an ideal base to work from.
Having a clean interior such as clean carpets and clean upholstery will help the freshener to last longer as it doesn’t have to work harder to compensate for a smelly interior.
I hope I’ve been able to help you today with making an informed choice and feel free to leave any comments, questions, or concerns down in the comments below.