The process for cleaning interior automotive upholstery depends on the type of material used in the upholstery as each type of fabric or material requires special cleaning instructions. Vehicles with leather interiors usually require special leather cleaners and conditioners to keep the leather soft and supple, as other types of cleaners could cause the leather to crack or the dye in it to fade or discolor.
To clean the interior on vehicles with cloth or fabric upholstery, first vacuum the interior to remove any dirt and loose debris. Spray the upholstery with a foaming interior cleaner, and allow it to sit on the fabric for a few minutes. Then wipe it off with a wet sponge. Finally, use a soft cloth to remove any excess residue and allow the upholstery to dry before vacuuming it again. This same process generally works to clean a vehicle's carpets as well, although it may be necessary to use a stain lifter, followed by scrubbing the stains with a plastic bristle brush.
There are also general car upholstery cleaners that can be used on a wide variety of different materials. However, you should test whatever cleaner is being used on an inconspicuous spot to make sure that the cleaner doesn't damage the upholstery.