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Apps for Navigating Baltimore + Car Cleaning 101


The 501 Blog, Baltimore, MD  Take advantage of our community's ZipCars this month! Keep your vehicle sparkling by trying these car cleaning tips, and navigate efficiently with these apps.


The 501 offers ZipCars onsite as one of our amenities, so in today’s blog post we’re sharing some apps that will help you navigate Baltimore efficiently. We also have some tips on taking care of your wheels for our car owners. We’re always looking for ways to help out members of our Maryland apartment community!

Helpful Apps


Taking the guesswork out of where to find the best price for gas is what this app delivers. Gasbuddy posts local gas prices so you can see at a glance the best place to fill up. It shows what grades are available, including diesel. This app is available for iOS, Android, and Blackberry.



Check out this community driven navigation map that is more than just navigation. Members provide real-time updates to the maps to indicate traffic jams, road construction, and even gas prices, and it’s not just for major freeways, highways, and arterial streets; even side streets can be included. In the case of heavy traffic and long delays, Waze will reroute you in the most efficient manner. Waze is available for iOS and Android.

Car Cleaning Tips

Whether you start with the inside or the outside of the car is a matter of personal preference, but we’ll start inside. Remove trash from your car. Grab all items that don’t belong in your car and put them where they belong, too!


Thoroughly vacuum the car interior, taking care to get underneath the seats and in crevices between the seats and on the floor. Use a cleaner designed for car interiors to clean the inside surfaces, paying particular attention to cup holders (which can be sticky). Several times a year, you will want to either do a detailed cleaning yourself or take your car to have it done. (Yelp has a list of the best car detailing venues near our apartments for your convenience.) Adding a car freshener to your newly cleaned car is a nice finishing touch.


For the outside, Consumer Reports recommends using “a dedicated car-wash product, which is milder and specifically designed for use on automotive paint.” First spray the car with water to rinse off loose dirt and debris, then “apply the suds with a large, soft natural sponge or lamb’s-wool mitt.” They further advise to use a sponge to clean your car moving it in a lengthwise direction across the car’s surfaces (moving it in circles will leave swirl-shaped residue). Rinse the sponge often in a separate bucket of clean water so as not to reapply bits of dirt to the car.


Once the car has been thoroughly washed (wash the wheels and tires with a separate sponge and dedicated wheel cleaner if necessary), rinse completely and remove excess water with a soft-rubber edged squeegee. Then dry with a chamois or soft terry cloth towels. Blot rather than wipe. Let it completely dry.


What other apps do you use? What car care and maintenance tips do you think we should all remember? Share your apps, advice, and expertise with the rest of our apartment community by leaving a comment! Thanks for reading. Good luck!