WATERLESS CAR WASHING

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By ROY NAKANO

According to reports cited by About and HowStuffWorks, the typical car wash at home uses between 80 and 140 gallons of water. For a world that is increasing concerned about ecology, that is a whole lot of Perrier.

That thought may have crossed the mind of James Dudra when he founded Eco Touch in 2006. As a New Hampshire native, Dudra grew up with an ecological bent. At 16, he launched his first business selling vermicomposting units that use worms to convert garbage into rich compost. During his college years, Dudra spent some time in Australia, wherein he learned that cars there are cleaned using a waterless method.

Enter the Eco Touch waterless car wash and polish.

The product works simply enough. You spray the solution onto a microfiber cloth towel. You wipe the towel on the car, and light duty dirt comes right off. Those small but annoying bird droppings also come off quite easily. Use an unsprayed portion of the cloth the wipe off the excess, and the car looks like it’s just been washed. We tried it on LA Car‘s black Prius project car and detected no scratches or swirls by using this waterless method. According to the Eco Touch people, the solution contains an “organic light soap and surfactants to dissolve much of the harmful dirt on contact” – and the polymers wrap around the particles to protect the surface from scratching.

The Eco Touch folks also assert that the solution is biodegradable, non-toxic, and free of petrochemicals and any known human carcinogens. The microfiber towels can be washed and reused.

It turns out that there is more to the Eco Touch waterless car wash than saving the Earth. It’s actually easier and quicker than a normal car wash. No more garden hoses to lug out. No more buckets to fill, chamois to hydrate, nor cars to wash and rinse. Of course, for heavily soiled vehicles, it’s still best to go the old fashion water way. On the other hand, if your vehicle just has the usual 1-2 weeks of accumulated light dirt, Eco Touch will save you a lot of work (not to mention water) and leave your vehicle squeaky-clean.

For more information about Eco Touch products, go to www.ecotouch.net.

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