June 20, 2008

DTQ: Stroller Detailing Tips?

I've been wondering about the fine art of stroller detailing lately, and how little I do it. Does anyone actually read the manual and follow the maintenance instructions, and clean their stroller? I think the last time I actually washed the Bugaboo was last summer after taking it out onto the beach. The sand gummed up the shocks and axles so badly, I had no choice but to take the rig apart and clean it out. But barring that, I guess I'm pretty content with the layer of goo, crumbs, and grime.

So if anyone has any tips, tales, or experience on quickly and easily enjoying the glorious benefits of regular stroller detailing, I'd be interested to hear it. And if I'm not the only guy who pretty much ignores his stroller's needs, I'd especially like to hear that.


I did a full clean/maintenance of the Bug a couple months ago, and it took something like 2 hours. I think I need to do it more regularly/frequently, then maybe it wouldn't take so long. Or require forceps to fish all sorts of scary stuff out of the swivel wheels...
[the stuff wrapped around the wheels is what scares me off. -ed.]

We'd be interested to hear this too. Our frog gets taken to the beach fairly frequently (we actually make use of that odd 2-wheel, parent-powered-rickshaw configuration...). I just hose it off in the drive-way to get rid of the sand build-up, then re-grease the wheels. We've tossed the seat into the washing machine maybe twice, and every few months I'll run a narrow vacuum attachment into the crevices of the seat cushion. Shaking the whole seat assembly upside down is also a well regarded method of cleaning in our house.
My mother's Mia Moda is worse. The dark fabric really shows water spots and dirt. I keep meaning to try and remove the cover to wash the thing for her, but haven't done so yet.

we've cleaned our Frog a couple of times. It's a pain but not any more than stripping car seat covers to wash. And our Frog canopy and seat are a bit faded but that's probably more to do with the Kansas sun than wash wear.

I have been known to hose down the bugaboo while washing my car. I just take it off the base, remove the seat padding, spray it down really well (the jet spray really gets the goo out), then let it air dry for an hour or so in the Arizona heat. It worked great but now that we live in NY (without a good hose) I am finding it difficult to keep clean.

our bug is filthy. 18 months of manhattan build up and now we live on cape cod, so sand, pollen, dead bugs....

check out this song if you have a chance... hilarious!!! "Stroller Town" by Jonathan Coulton

The gunk in the swivel wheels was scary... I tried not to think about what it could be...

Forgot to note that I wash the fabric quite frequently. I keep the bottom portion of the footmuff in place year-round, so it and the canopy are washed regularly, and the seat fabric a little less frequently but still fairly often. Washed in the machine, but hung to dry.

our stokke, now on its second kid, is filthy. filthy filthy. like black trim on the stylish blue. i see now ones on the street and im shocked. ive tried to clean it but need serious chemicals to break down the manhattan grime, especially anywhere on the frame. since #1 stopped fitting in it at 1y9m I figure I'll just wait til #2 grows out of it and then leave it on the street.
The Phil and Teds sport, on the other hand, is easy to clean. we also got the fluffy lambswool inserts that you can take out and throw in the laundry. i did a little spontaneous wipe down after we went strolling through some sprinklers in the playground. still some grossness around the wheels but i figure it will deteriorate eventually.

The auto detailer next door just had a 120-year-old pram in for detailing...thus the answer is, take it to a detailer.

The Safari I just hit with a hose every now and then if the chicken crap builds up too much on the tires.

Our bug has Mexican and Cuban sand deep in the wheels, but it's Toronto salt that's done most of the damage. I'm nervous about taking the dremel rust removal brushes to a bunch of small parts, but it will have to be done.

I am the marketing manager for teutonia strollers here in the US and I wanted to weigh in on this post about caring for your stroller (which is a question we often get from our teutonia users.) We recommend using household soap and warm water to clean the stroller frame; the seat pad can be thrown in the washing machine on a delicate cycle with cold water and then lay it out to dry. (This cleaning recommendation is pretty common across many stroller brands.) And if you just can’t get the seat clean enough (or it starts to fade) teutonia offers different color fabric seat kits! (sorry I had to throw that in :)) One other thing for teutonia that is unique- after you take the stroller to the beach (or any place with a loose surface) we advise owners to re-align and center the wheels if they are moving more towards the right or left. General maintenance certainly helps your investment last longer. Hope this helps!!!

Not to post-jack, but... Teutonia is available in North America?? They are the stroller of choice for my SIL in Germany. Nicolette, if you're reading this: will they to be available in Canada?

Melanie - we are not in Canada just yet, but keep checking our website!

Hi Nicolette - hopefully you'll read this. I'm a retailer in Canada, trying to get in touch with someone at teutonia for a while now. Do you know who I can contact about bringing Teutonia into Canada or even drop shipping from the US? We do that now with BLOOM.

[let's move the Teutonia love fest to the Teutonia post, eh? -ed.]

As the obsessive compulsive person I am I spent many a nights on the floor of our apartment disassembling, cleaning and reassembling the Bugaboo. I then had to retreat to the compactor room (Nasty!!) in the basement to hose down and clean the frame section and clean the double Urban Mountain Buggy. The maintanance guys in the building thought I was crazy....the other Nannies thought we we loaded and just continued to buy new strollers. So I am in the basement and the light bulb goes off!! I completely forgot what my company does. We are in the garment and textile care business a/k/a the dry cleaning business. So I start bringing the strollers to work and teach my employees how to clean them. One thing leads to another and we are in the stroller cleaning business, car seats too. We have always cleaned kids clothes in an eco friendly way so this was a no brainer for us. If we can be of any assistance to New York famlies we have locations in New York City as well as Manhasset Long Island. http://garmentcare.com/strollers.htm

Spot clean, take off all upholstery, the underseat bag, canopy and pop in in a cool bath with some gentle cleaner (baking soda works wonders on coffee stains!). Next take off rear and front swivel wheels (I usually need a wrench with the Bug) and remove all debris and hair from axles with small sharp tools. Then use a firm tooth brush (I use a sonic scrubber) and some gentle cleanser and brush clean (keeping metal parts out of the water to avoid rust). Next take off seat frame and gently scrub that down followed by the entire chassis (Q-tips work well on itty-bitty parts that brushes are to big to get into). Piece back together, polish, steam clean and detail (Cameleons will usually need a good lint removal and most strollers will need a few stray threads cut) and you are set. The entire process usually takes about 3 hours give or take - serious mold will take a bit more time in which case I LOVE MoldAvenger. It's eco-friendly and babysafe.
I operate a stroller detail/repair shop, but anyone who has the time and will can make any stroller look like new.

This is James at Meurice Garment Care -- I just saw the post from our company's owner in June 2008!

One year later, we're still cleaning a lot of strollers. Odds are we've been through more than 400 since Wayne introduced the service at our New York Stores. Running them through the dry cleaning plant sure beats struggling with a hose!

I've been digging up old links because we're running a 20 % discount on stroller cleaning through Oct 13. -- you can print the coupon here: http://bit.ly/wlMG8



Well, since we appear to be advertising here, If you happen to live on the West Coast, feel free to bring your stroller or car seat in to Buggy Bubbles Detail Shop! We have also been running for a few years now, and we have locations in San Francisco and Los Angeles. Check out our site at www.buggybubbles.com

Once you have all the skills they need to make sure that it's installed properly,
following the arrow of the direction of auto parts & accessories the refrigerant.

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