Car Washing and the Ecology

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I decided to write down about a subject that gets loads of lip provider, but now not a great deal motion: easy water and car washing. Now, do not be burdened, I’m not a tree hugger; I simply suppose it is time all of us had some cognizance on an trouble that issues us all.

In 1972 the U.S. EPA surpassed the Clean Water Act (CWA). It is designed to be the “cornerstone of floor water nice protection within the United States.” In the early decades of the Act, efforts focused on regulating discharges from conventional factor supply facilities, inclusive of municipal sewage vegetation and commercial centers, with little attention paid to runoff from streets, creation websites, farms, and other assets. This has modified. Since the Nineteen Eighties, efforts to deal with polluted runoff have accelerated drastically.

The EPA’s shift in awareness from big extent runoff assets to small quantity assets is beginning to have an effect on mobile detailers, who’re meant to apply water reclamation structures. However, this Federal mandate is enforced via only a few municipalities (broadly speaking in Texas and California).

As the U.S. EPA keeps its mandate to put in force the CWA, I agree with both cell detailers and home proprietors/renters will be tightly regulated to conform with the Act. The query for me is why should we wait to be advised? If we recognize what automobile wash soaps and cleaners are doing to contaminate floor waters, do we not have a duty to do something about it now?

These questions were rolling around in my thoughts for a while, so I was thinking about the numerous techniques we need to easy our automobiles without polluting our floor waters (or flood water, for that, remember). Obviously, brief element sprays were round for a long time, and that is an option, albeit an expensive one. I bet this issue could have been the genesis for a dozen or greater spray and wipe products that have hit the marketplace for doing the “waterless wash”.

I suppose a twig and wipe waterless wash product is okay, and probably better than washing through the traditional soap and water approach, but I’m no longer certain. While this approach does now not pollute floor water, I don’t agree with it conserves, both.

Consider that an ordinary spray and wipe waterless wash will in all likelihood require 4 to six microfiber towels and an equal range of ounces of spray and wipe product. Your automobile is easy, but now what? I imply, what are you going to do with the ones moist, soiled, chemical saturated towels? My guess is, most people are going to wash them.

Great, there is going the water conservation.

Water verbal exchange? Yeah, I recognize we have been discussing floor water pollutants, however, if we’re speaking water supply, how are we able to now not address water conservation? As a Californian, I’m all too acquainted with drought situations that limit water usage. So, for me, discovering alternate strategies of washing the cars is imperative.

Okay, lower back to the towels. Does running a load of laundry to clean the towels that cleaned the automobile conserve water? So as to now not be accused of inventing my very own statistics, I will defer to the International Carwash Association, which claims that the average domestic car wash makes use of 80 to a hundred and forty gallons of water. I’m no longer certain if that is correct or no longer, as it appears excessive to me.

How does this compare to the bathing machine? According to Consumer Report and the California Energy Commission Consumer Energy Center, the average washing device makes use of about forty-45 gallons of water in keeping with the load. Plus, you use more cleaners to put off the soil out of your towels, where it all goes down the drain to be dealt with by the sewage system.

Do you see why I’m skeptical approximately spray and wipe merchandise being the proper solution? Plus, I have no longer even referred to all of these plastic spray bottles that get thrown away and grow to be inside the landfill. Don’t get me started out on that problem.

I think there may be a higher manner to do the mild obligation cleaning of our vehicles. It’s the no-rinse automobile wash (sponge bathtub), and there is two exquisite merchandise that I’m aware of that make it possible: Quick and Easy Wash (QEW) from Protect All and Optimum No Rinse Wash & Shine (ONR) from Optimum Polymer Technologies. Both of that merchandise is in big use by way of Autopia.Org contributors (basically cell detailers).

If you are now not familiar with the no-rinse vehicle washing procedure, you certainly mix a small quantity of Optimum No Rinse or Protect All Quick & Easy Wash in a pair gallon of water and use the answer to offer your automobile a sponge bath one place at a time. You normally begin at the pinnacle and paintings down, keeping your wash mitt or sponge properly rinsed as you pass. After cleansing an area the scale of a frame panel, you dry to prevent recognizing. In maximum cases, the technique is truly faster than your regular vehicle wash approach.

I lately had the opportunity to speak with David Ghodoussi, a chemical engineer and founding father of Optimum Polymer Technologies, about the No Rinse Wash & Shine product. I asked him the following particular questions:

DG: No rinse is derived from soy oil and is safe for flora and grass, consequently, the wash water may be used for watering the lawn or flowers which is a plus in particular in regions with water scarcity. Alternatively, the wash water can be disposed of within the sewage machine which is any other safe approach of discarding all of the oil and grime from the wash procedure.

DG: The largest advantage of no rinse is that is safer for the brand new paint structures than traditional soaps. As we all understand, soap generation is over a hundred years old at the same time as car paint has advanced into a surprisingly sophisticated multi-layer gadget. No Rinse has more cleansing power, more lubricity, and leaves a defensive polymeric film that adds gloss and slickness to the finish. That is why you may use no rinse with an awful lot much less water and get better effects than a traditional soap. As a couple of aspect effects, no rinse will help preserve water and shield our drinking water from automobile contaminants.

After my discussion with David Ghodoussi, and mastering how secure the product is for both the car and the surroundings, I feel confident that the no-rinse automobile wash approach is the proper answer for the future. What are your thoughts? Hit me up on Twitter.