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Waterless Car Wash: What It Is And How Does It Work?

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In a country where citizens have to walk miles and miles to fetch drinking water, wasting millions of litres of water a year on car washes exasperates one to no end.

Around three years ago, the innovative idea of a waterless car wash hit the major car manufacturers of India, and there has been no looking back since then. Some of them have reported significant results in terms of water conservation. They even encourage their customers to switch to water-less car wash.

What is a waterless car wash?

Water-less car wash system is a revolutionary cleaning system that uses only a few milliliters of water. Also, it cleans and shines your car in a single step. Various biodegradable agents and polish provide cleaning. This makes it an eco friendly car wash and far more effective than a regular car wash.

While the body of the car can be cleaned to a shine using this system, the under-body still requires water. So car manufacturers across the country are now setting up car wash systems that will save around 20 percent more water as compared to existing under-body systems.

How does it work?

This system of car wash uses makes use of eco-friendly and biodegradable chemicals. After dry-dusting, the vehicle is sprayed with a particular chemical using an air-pressure tank. The resulting foam covers the entire body and seeps into its crevices before being wiped clean using a micro-fiber cloth.

How to do a Waterless Car Wash at Home?

As mentioned above, the process of waterless car wash is remarkable as it saves a lot of water. Although it also involves the use of water for cleaning, it is relatively less. 

Now, if you want to practice a waterless car wash at your home, you don’t need to become a chemist or anything like that, but the things you need should be precise and authentic. For example, you need to have a lot of microfiber towels of 300 GSM each. It will be soft on your car and will prevent scratches.

Note: This method is not for caked mud. It requires more water for cleaning.

Here is a step by step procedure to do a waterless car wash at home:

  1. Take a microfiber towel and fold it twice to get eight clean sides. A microfiber towel is recommended as it is highly absorbent and is also amazingly plush.
  2. Divide your car into different sections for effective washing. Such as, the roof, the side doors, the rear bumper, the front bumper, etc. Focus on one section at a time.
  3. Use different cloth for different parts.
  4. Spray the waterless car wash mixture on the car and gently wipe or rub with a microfiber cloth. Post this, quickly polish the surface with another dry cloth.
  5. Maintain a synchronous pattern of rubbing and wiping, i.e., keep doing them in a single direction to prevent retaining dirt on the car.
  6. Don’t apply much pressure and replace the towel when dirty.
  7. Carry out a similar process for all the other parts of the car.

Environmental Impact of a Waterless Car Wash

The system of water-led car wash is harmful to the environment directly and indirectly. But, the discovery of the waterless car wash has transformed the process to a great extent.

If we go by the figures, a person washing his car at home with a bucket and hose uses around 80-240 gallons of water, which is 302 liters at minimum. The usage of water is surprisingly high.

Moreover, this process also leads to the discharge of numerous toxic chemicals into the environment.

If we talk about the service stations that provide car wash services, they utilize around 45-50 gallons of water. The good thing about this process is that the service stations reclaim this water via in-house recycling plants.

Lastly, the waterless car wash does not require this much amount of water for washing. The car wash’s overall process will need around 4-6 ounces of waterless car wash solution along with two or more buckets of water. An average bucket of water is of 10 liters, which are way less than that of the above two processes.

In addition to using less water, the waterless car wash solution is also free from any hazardous components like:

  • Petroleum
  • Acids
  • Solvents
  • Non-volatile organic compounds

So, they do not cause any sort of harmful effects on the environment.

Why should one make the switch?

As per one of India’s leading car manufacturers, the company saved over 656 million liters of water during 2018-19 across its workshops, which is 203 per cent higher as against 216 million liters in 2016-17. Their Executive Director said “dry wash at our dealer workshops help us do our bit to give back to society. We request over 18 million customers who visit our workshops every year, to opt for dry wash and help conserve water.”

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While this system doesn’t make a massive dent in the country’s water woes right now, any step towards conservation of water is a boon for the environment.

Products For Waterless Car Wash

If you are reading this, you have probably decided to get one waterless car wash solution for yourself. Awesome! But to get the best results, you need to work with the best products. 

Thus, you need to consider some of the things while buying the waterless car wash product for yourself.

  • Size of the car: This factor is essential to consider as it will decide the amount of waterless car wash required. 
  • Form of car wash: Make sure that you check the sort of car wash if it requires only the mixing water or any other solution to make the final product.
  • Cloth: If a waterless car wash solution comes with a cloth, it will act as a bonus on your purchase. Most of the products come with wipes, towels, and napkins. You can choose Porklear, it is a brand that offers microfiber cloths with the car wash. Hence, you can consider buying that.
  • Versatile: Well, a good waterless car wash is the one that can be used for other purposes also. If you are looking for such a waterless car wash, you can go for the one from Jopasu. It is useful for cleaning both the interior and exterior of the car.
  • Color of the car: This factor also plays a crucial role as some car wash solutions are meant for a specific range of colors. The one from Chemical Guys is the best and effective for all colors.

Does a waterless car wash scratch paint?

This entirely depends on your way of using the waterless car wash solution. Moreover, it also depends on the type of cloth you are using. Using a plush cloth for cleaning the car will leave it clean and scratch-free. Keep the rubbing gentle and ensure that it is always moving in one direction. Rubbing in opposite directions or circular motion may lead to scratching the car.

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Is a waterless car wash safe?

Yes, the waterless car wash formulas are entirely safe to use on your car. This is because they are made from lubricants and cleaning agents. However, it is necessary to verify that the waterless car wash you are buying is biodegradable and VOC compliant. VOC compliant car wash is best for your car.

What is the Eco car wash?

An eco-car wash is another name for a waterless car wash. The name stems from the fact that waterless car wash formulas are bereft of harmful or environmentally damaging ingredients. All the constituents of an eco-car wash are environment friendly. Moreover, the myriad of benefits of a waterless car wash, makes this activity Mother Nature’s friend, hence the name.

How does waterless car wash work?

Well, the process of a waterless car wash is pretty simple. However, you need to be cautious while doing the job. The process involves spraying a waterless car wash formula on the car and then rubbing it lightly to get a clean and glossy finish. Make sure that the cloth you are using is soft and absorbent, and you rub or wipe the solution in a single direction.

How to make a waterless car wash?

You can also make your waterless car solution at your home. You just need to follow some simple steps: Add two drops of auto wash solution along with water and little detailer. A mix of kerosene and water in a ratio of 6:1. Make a paste of baking soda, water, liquid castile soap and jojoba wax. Mix all these together, and your diluted multi-purpose waterless car wash spray is ready.


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