Three Tips to Keep Your Car Windows from Fogging

Screen Shot 2014-01-28 at 6.55.34 AMThe science behind a foggy car window is actually quite simple. When there is a difference between the outside and interior air temperature, moisture gets deposited on your car windows. That’s why during winter months when the temperature drops, you’ll notice more condensation on the inside of your car. Conversely, when it’s hot and humid outside and you put on the air conditioner, you’ll notice that the exterior windows fog up. Annoying? Yes. But thankfully there are ways to combat it and get your windows back in the clear. 

Put the Wet Stuff in the Trunk
Sweaty Gym Clothes. Umbrellas. Ski Boots. What do all of these items have in common? They carry a lot of moisture with them that will make your car windows fog up. If possible, put these items in the trunk before driving. Also, if you’re coming into your car from the snow, give your feet a few claps together before entering the vehicle to clear away any excess.

Keep Your Car Mats Dry
Another culprit to foggy windows are your car mats. Inevitably they will get wet during rainy days, but do your best to limit the amount of moisture they take in. This is especially true if you’ve recently detailed or cleaned your car. If there is any residual water or chemical formula on the mats still you may encounter a bit of fogging as they dry out inside your vehicle.

Keep Your Windows Cleaned and Protected
Contaminants such as streaks, smudges and dirt give moisture droplets an easier base to settle on. Make sure you keep your glass

Use the back of your hand for more leverage.

Keeping your car’s windows clean helps prevent moisture from sticking to the surface.

cleaned and protected to minimize fogging. Car window cleaning products come in many different varieties. Try selecting one such as Eco Touch window clear which is free of ammonia or alcohol. Next, add a layer of protection which will help keep moisture from settling on the surface. We suggest Eco Touch Quick Wax since it safe for all glass and window surfaces. Use sparingly and buff with a dry microfiber towel for best results.

James Dudra on Google+

How to Detail Your Car’s Interior

Let’s face it, the interior of your car gets little attention when it comes to detailing. Kids, pets, food and other contaminants all can take their toll on your car’s interior. While it’s easy to neglect the interior of your car, the long-term affects will soon become apparent. Interior car cleaning can take as little as 15 minutes, so why not get started today?

Tools Required: 
Vacuum
Scrub Brush
Microfiber Towels
Eco Touch Carpet + Upholstery Cleaner
Eco Touch All Purpose
Eco Touch Window Clear
Eco Touch Dashboard Protect
Eco Touch Leather Care (optional if you have leather)

1) Remove all loose debris from the car including trash, car seats, car mats and coins. You want the interior of your car to be stripped of as much as possible to enable you to get into every nook and cranny.

2) Thoroughly vacuum the vehicle’s seating and carpeting. Many vacuums come with special attachments for those hard-to-reach places such as in between the seat and center console. Remember to move your seats to the full forward and backward position so you can cover ever inch of carpeting on the floor.

3) Now that the car has been vacuumed, you may notice there are still spots on the vehicle’s interior from liquid spills. You’ll want to grab your bottle of Eco Touch Carpet + Upholstery and scrub brush. Apply Eco Touch Carpet + Upholstery onto the spot and let sit for 30 seconds. Next, agitate with the brush to activate the formula, you should start to notice foaming. Finally blot dry with a microfiber cloth.

4) Next it’s time to take on the vinyl and trim pieces of the vehicle. If they’ve been heavily neglected and contain built-up grime you need to do a deep cleaning. Grab your bottle of Eco Touch All Purpose and get to work. Spray on the vinyl/trim and let set for about 10 seconds before wiping with a dry microfiber cloth. Letting the formula set on the surface allows the cleaning agents to penetrate in vinyl material and lift out contaminants.

Once the vinyl has been cleaned you want to add a protective layer to help fend off UV rays or future contaminants. Eco Touch Dashboard Protect is a low-gloss protectant which is enhanced with carnauba wax. Apply once section at a time and thoroughly work into the surface. It is not glossy and will leave very little residue behind.

5) If you have leather, continue reading. If not, skip to step 6. Leather seats, much like our skin, require constant nourishment. Over time leather can dry and crack, so you’ll want to add moisture back to the surface. However, you may also notice that the leather has also accumulated its fair share of dirt and debris. You’ll want to brush away any visible contaminants before applying a formula on the surface. Once the surface is clear, grab your bottle of Eco Touch Leather Care and get to work. Work one section at a time with a soft microfiber cloth. This is a 2-in-1 cleaner and protectant designed specifically for leather surfaces.

6) The next step in completing your interior detail is the windows. While many people think “window cleaning, piece of cake”, they soon find they are left with streaks and smudge marks after using their favorite cleaner. You see, there is a science to window cleaning. The right product + the right cleaning cloth = great results. Many people think that they can grab their household glass cleaner, a roll of paper towels, and the job in done. Unfortunately when driving (especially at night) we can see every missed spot.

Start by taking Eco Touch Window Clear and our proprietary glass cleaning cloth. Spray lightly one section at a time and buff clean. As the towel become more saturated with formula, switch to a new side. It’s really that easy. If you’re unsure you’ve cleaned without streaking, hold up a light to the glass and look at it from different angles. You’ll soon see whether or not you’ve missed a spot.

7) The final step in your interior cleaning routine is to thoroughly clean all the floor mats before putting them back in your car. One important tip: if you’ve laid the mats down on the ground or a dirty floor, be sure to also clean the BACK of the mat before putting it in the car. Otherwise you’ll find you’ve dragged along dirt and grime right back onto the carpets.

Eco Touch manufactures and formulates a wide range of interior car cleaning products for both DIY consumers and professionals. Be sure to check them out and let us know if you have any questions!

James Dudra on Google+

What’s the Difference Between a Quick Detailer and Waterless Car Wash?

One of the most common misconceptions in the car care industry is equating a Quick Detailer/Spray Detailer with a Waterless Car Wash. Let’s be clear, these are two completely different products with two different functions in the detailing world.

Quick Detailers were created to give users a fast and effective way to restore a car’s gloss without the hassle of a paste or liquid wax. These products are mainly used on cars that are in ‘showroom’ condition with no visible contaminants on the surface of the paint. They have excellent gloss, protection and lubricity, but lack the cleaning power to go beyond cleaning fingerprints or dust.

Waterless Car Wash products are intended to replace a hose and bucket wash. They do share many of the same characteristics of a Quick Detailer, but also are formulated with cleaning agents (surfactants) that can more safely and effectively emulsify contaminants on the surface of the paint. Waterless Car Wash products such as Eco Touch, are safe to use on light-moderately soiled vehicles. Heavy mud, salt or sand needs to be addressed with a pre-rinse before using this method.

In summary, here’s a quick comparison between the two products:

Quick Detailer
Cleaning Ability – Fingerprints or dust only
Gloss – Excellent
Protection – Good

Waterless Car Wash
Cleaning Ability – Daily driving road grime.
Gloss – Good
Protection – Good

Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash is excellent for cleaning light to moderately soiled vehicles.

James Dudra on Google+

Tips for Washing Your Car in the Winter

astonwinter

For those of us who live in colder climates, the winter time is brutal for keeping your car cleaned. It only takes one drive down the road to completely spoil a freshly washed and waxed vehicle. Adding to the difficulty is the perpetual cold weather which can restrict how frequently you can wash your car at home. Although, any auto enthusiast will tell you that not even the most brutally cold and snowy winter will stop them from keeping their car in its best shape. So, we’ve put together a list of our top tips for washing your car during the winter months.

1. Wait for a sunny and calm day

The majority of car care products on the market today are optimized to work at temperatures of 50 degrees and above. We all know that 50 degree temps can be a rarity during the winter, so your next best option is to wait for a sunny day. This will allow the car panels to warm up and enable the active ingredients to be most effective during the cleaning process. It also lessens the chance of having a formula freeze on contact with the paint.

2. Grab a Waterless Car Wash and find some shelter

Waterless Car Washes enables anyone to clean their car without a hose and bucket. Again, these formulas can be affected by very cold weather (sub 32F), so it’s best to find a location where the temperature is more evenly regulated. You may want to consider heading to your local mall or shopping center where they have a covered parking garage. This will get you out of the wind and the temperature should be a few degrees warmer inside. 

Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash is a spray and wipe cleaner which can be used during the winter time.

3. Head to your car wash…at the right time

Here is New England it’s not an uncommon sight to see cars lined up at the automatic car wash after a big storm. The sad reality is that the minute these people drive away, their cars will be covered in the same mud, salt and sand they went in with. You see, during the storm, crews have been out for hours covering the roads with salt and sand. Once it’s all over the snow starts melting and creates a big slushy mess of contaminants just waiting to cling to your vehicle. Typically it’s better to wait a few days after a storm to go through the car wash. By that time the majority of contaminants have already left the road and you’ll have a lesser chance to picking them up on your vehicle.

4. Apply a high quality wax to make washing easier

After your car has been cleaned, be sure to apply a wax for even greater protection from the elements. Not only will it give your vehicle a brilliant shine, but it will also keep your car cleaner longer. Durable polymers and natural waxes such as carnauba will form a protective barrier on the car’s paint which will last for at least a month. You may even notice that water will literally bead right off the paint. In the wintertime, a spray wax would be your best bet since they are much faster and more convenient to apply.

Eco Touch Quick Wax takes only 15 minutes to apply. Safe for all exterior surfaces.

James Dudra on Google+

How to Start a Mobile Detailing Business

The birth of any new business is an exciting time for an entrepreneur. What was once an idea spinning around in your head is now starting to take shape and come to life. Planning out your business rather than jumping right in can pay dividends down the road. To help you with your new mobile detailing business, we’ve put together a set of steps for getting started.

Create your Business Entity
The first step you’ll want to take as a new business owner is to establish a legal entity for the business. For example, will you be operating as a sole proprietor, LLC or corporation? There are plenty of options available and you’ll want to pick what’s right for you based on your situation. Contact a qualified attorney or your local SCORE office to help you get started in the right direction.

Obtain Permits
Each city and state has their own unique regulations on what you’ll need to operate your business. Contact your local county clerk to check on special permits that may be necessary to conduct business. Also be sure to register with your state for tax certificates and tax id numbers. Here’s a helpful link to all the Secretaries of State:

http://www.coordinatedlegal.com/SecretaryOfState.html

Research the Competition
Customers today have instant access to the competition. You’ll want to be armed information on what your competitors are charging, the services they offer, and what people are saying about them. Much of this information is normally available on their website. Be sure to also checkout Yelp or other social review sites to get a sense of how people are rating their business and how you’ll compare.

Here’s a list of some helpful questions to ask while researching the competition: 

What services are they offering?
How much are they charging? 

What clientele are they targeting? 
Are they fixed or mobile? 
What are their customers saying? See Yelp, Yellowpages or Google. 

Create Your Brand
How customers perceive your new business is just as important as the quality of work you provide them. Establishing yourself as a professional company which is well-branded will set you apart from “Joe” down the street who does detailing on the side. Some key elements to creating a reputable brand are as follows: 

• Name
• Logo
• Slogan

Creating a memorable brand name is harder than it seems. As consumers we are constantly bombarded by advertisements throughout the day. For your detailing business there are a few different directions you can take…

Name after the services you offer. For example, you could incorporate the following words into your name: mobile, traveling, to-you, premium, luxury, easy, convenient, etc.

Name after your geographical location: For example: coast, inland, city, bay, mountain, etc.

The second step in preparing your brand is to craft a professional logo. By all means, spend the extra money and hire a graphic artist to make this for you. In fact, there are now websites you can use to effectively “crowdsource” your logo and receive hundreds of different options. Check out either designcrowd.com or crowdspring.com  for more ideas.

Some more resources for you to check out:

Free Detailing Business Card Templates
7 Keys to Creating a Killer Brand

Three Best Ways to Create a Brand Name
Visual Thesaurus

Obtain Insurance
Obtaining the right insurance is absolutely critical to protecting both your own (and ultimately your clients) vehicle. The most popular type of insurance is referred to as “Garage Keeper’s Liability”. Even if you are simply showing up at someone’s house to detail their vehicle you’ll want to be protected, you just never know what could happen on the job. The cost for this type of insurance is relatively low, and is well worth the peace of mind.

If you plan on hiring employees you’ll also want to get worker’s compensation insurance. This will protect you and your employees in case there is ever an accident on the job.

Purchase Your Products
Selecting the right products depends on the services you’ll be offering. For example, are you just doing a quick wash and vacuum? Or a full detail? Eco Touch offers some excellent detailer starter packages which give you a full range of products to get your new venture off the ground.

Detailer’s Starter Kit Level 1

Detailer’s Starter Kit Level 2

Market, Market Market!
There’s nothing worse than launching a business and just waiting for the phone to ring. Customers need to find you! Thankfully you don’t need to spend a small fortune to get the word out there. Here’s some easy and free ways to market yourself:

• Flyers on billboards across town
• Create a Facebook business page and invite friends/family
• Yelp
• Create a press release and submit to local newspapers

If you’re willing to invest a bit more into marketing, consider creating a highly targeted campaign through Google AdWords. You can segment based on geographical region and other demographics. For just a few dollars a day you can be reaching new customers right away!

James Dudra on Google+

Hands-on with Leather Care – Cleaning & Conditioning Leather Car Seats

Leather is in many ways similar to our own skin. We need to keep it cleaned and conditioned to stay in the best shape possible. Over time and with neglected maintenance, leather may start to crack and fade losing its original luster. Adding to the problem is the fact that many people new to owning a car with leather interiors have no idea of the best way to maintain its appearance.

Eco Touch Leather Care is formulated to be a 2-in-1 product for both cleaning and conditioning. It’s pH balanced and contains natural emollients that will leave a supple matte finish. We’ve also incorporated a pleasant almond fragrance to make the cleaning experience all the more enjoyable.

Leather Photo1 (8)

1) Start by vacuuming out the car’s interior. You may find that using a brush attachment and crevice tool will allow you to completely work all sections of the leather seats.

Vac

2) Apply a quarter-sized amount of product onto your towel. You may want to fold the towel a few times with the product inside to help spread it across the surface.

Photo1 (9)

3) Gently work Leather Care into the surface buffing gently across the surface. You’ll notice that the formula is readily absorbed into the pores of the leather material, while any surface contaminants are pulled into the microfiber towel.

Photo1 (10)

4) Flip to a dry section of towel and buff dry.

Buff

And that’s it, you’re leather car seats are now cleaned, conditioned and ready to ride again. Remember to stick to a regular cleaning schedule to avoid excess build-up of body oils, dirt and grime on the surface.

Photo1 (12)

How to Wax a Car in Under 15 Minutes

Some of us might remember the days when ‘waxing’ a car meant applying a paste-like substance to your paint, waiting for it to dry to a haze, and buffing for eternity until your arms looked like Popeye. Thankfully, advances in polymer chemistry have greatly enhanced the speed and efficiency of car wax products today. Yes, there are still the diehards who insist on spending hours in the driveway buffing and polishing away. But, for the average consumer who simply wants a great finish without the hassle, there exist some excellent options. Here’s what you’ll need to get started:

24 oz. Eco Touch Quick Wax
24 oz. Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash
2 – 4 high-quality microfiber towels
15 minutes of time

1) Move your car into a shaded location for best results. While it’s possible to wax in direct sunlight, you’ll be fighting against the formula evaporating too quickly on the car’s paint.

2) Star by washing the vehicle from top to bottom to remove surface contaminants. We suggest using Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash for vehicles that are lightly-moderately soiled. If it’s during the winter months and you have heavy salt, sand or mud debris, do a quick pre-rinse and then continue with the Waterless Wash method.

3) Now that the surface has been cleaned you can apply your wax. Eco Touch Quick Wax is a spray car wax that dries clear. That means no white chalky residue or intense labor to remove.

4) Apply Quick Wax one section at a time. For instance, work in 1/2 panels by lightly spraying the formula onto the car and buffing clean. Be sure to use a high-quality microfiber towel with at least 300 GSM or higher. Lower-quality towels tend to fall apart more quickly and can leave a trail of fibers on the paint.

Once the car has been waxed, be sure to re-apply as needed. During the summer months you may find that the protective layer of polymers/waxes degrade more quickly due to the increased intensity of the sunlight. As a general rule of thumb, waxing every 3-4 weeks will keep your car in it’s best condition for the long term.

James Dudra on Google+

Eight Tips for Cleaning Car Windows Without Streaks

While cleaning your car windows isn’t exactly the most glamourous part of detailing, it is certainly one of the most important when the rest of your vehicle is shining. To help rid yourself of those unsightly streaks, we’ve put together a list of tips to get your glass sparkling for the upcoming summer season.

1. Clean out of direct sunlight. 

Ever see those little white streaks after you’re done cleaning? That’s probably the cleaning agents from your window cleaning formula which have dried on the surface. Be sure to clean on an overcast day or in the shade. Otherwise, if you clean in direct sunlight, your car windows will be too hot and the formula will evaporate on the surface before you have a chance to wipe clean.

Clean on an overcast day or in a shaded location.

Clean on an overcast day or in a shaded location.

2. Use a low pile microfiber towel. 

Outside of the actual window cleaning product, your selection of a high-quality microfiber towel is perhaps the most important factor in streak-free window cleaning. You’ll want to use a low-pile tight weave microfiber cloth. The tight weave on these towels provide a little extra scrubbing ability which is excellent for glass surfaces.

Low pile microfiber towel.

Low pile microfiber towel.

3. Clean the interior windshield from the passenger seat. 

For easier access to the windshield, sit in the passenger seat. You’ll avoid having to contend with the steering wheel which will ensure that all areas are cleaned.

4. Use the back of your hand for cleaning the windshield. 

To give yourself a bit more leverage and cleaning power, put the microfiber on the back of your hand and press against the glass. This will also allow you to reach those top and bottom corners more easily.

Use the back of your hand for more leverage.

Use the back of your hand for more leverage.

5. For interior windows, spray on the towel first. 

When cleaning interior windows (especially the windshield) be sure to spray your microfiber towel first. This will help avoid overspray onto previously cleaned areas, and keep the cleaner off the dashboard.

For interior windows, spray the towel first then wipe clean.

For interior windows, spray the towel first then wipe clean.

6. Roll down your windows. 

To reach the top sections of glass, be sure to roll down your windows about halfway. This will allow easier access and ensure all sections are cleaned.

roll down windows

Rolling down your windows halfway allows access to top sections of the glass.

7. Work methodically and don’t rush the process.

Many people mistakenly believe they can simply spritz down the glass and quickly buff clean. Unfortunately you will end up rushing the process and most likely end up with poor streaky results. Taking your time to slowly and methodically clean each window will pay dividends at the end of your cleaning process.

8. Use the right product. 

Select a product designed specifically for cleaning automotive glass. Traditional household cleaners can contain ammonia which will damage any coatings or tint on the glass. Eco Touch makes a solvent-free glass cleaner which is safe for cleaning all automotive windows.

Select a glass cleaner safe for automotive windows.

Select a glass cleaner safe for automotive windows.

James Dudra on Google+

The Basics of Performing a Waterless Car Wash

Let’s start by being clear about something - using a waterless wash product is not hard. I know, it can sound intimidating at the start. Where’s the hose? Where are the suds? But trust me, after cleaning just a few panels you’ll be hooked on the process. The speed at which you are able to simultaneously clean and protect your car in one simple step is quite amazing. To help anyone just getting into this method of washing, we’ve assembled a list of best practices.

1. Work from the top of the car down. 

Car’s naturally accumulate dirt along the lower body panels and you’ll want to tackle these areas last. Start with the roof->hood->door panels->trunk->lower body panels. Be sure to pay extra attention near wheel wells where heavy debris t.

Cleaning Sequence

2. Use quality microfiber towels. 

Outside of the waterless product you use, make sure you have a good stock of high quality microfiber towels. We suggest towels with a 300 GSM rating, as they offer the best combination of cleaning and polishing. While many people think that using a higher GSM towel is better, it can surprisingly work against you. We’ve found that those fluffy 400+ GSM  towels do not clean as effectively as their lower 300 GSM counterparts.

3. Fold your towel in half and half again.

You’ll want to maximize the number of sides on your towel. By folding in half twice, you’ll effectively get eight sides to work with. Use at least one side per panel depending on how dirty the vehicle is.

foldedtowel

4. Work in small sections. 

Start with a 2ft x 2ft area for applying and buffing off the waterless formula. If your car is completely cool and relatively clean you may be able to work in larger sections.

2ftcleaningsection

5. Wipe in one direction. 

Follow the contours of the car’s body and wipe in the direction of normal airflow over the panel. This will help prevent re-soiling the areas of the car you’ve already cleaned. You should not use a circular buffing motion as if you were using a wax.

onedirectionwipe

6. Apply light pressure on first stroke to remove contaminants. 

You’ll want to apply light pressure on your first pass over the panel. We suggest using the wipe and ‘lift’ technique where you are simultaneously rotating the towel while wiping across the surface.

wipeandlift

7. Keep your buffing towel separate, clean and dry.

Pick one set of towels for the cleaning and one for buffing. For best results you want to have your buffing towels near 100% dry. Many times we’ve seen detailers use two towel colors so it’s easy to remember which is which.

cleaningpolishing

Eco Touch manufactures a complete line of professional detailing supplies in Dover, NH. We are a family owned and operated company since 2007. Have any other questions? Call us today at 888.375.7970.

James Dudra on Google+

Five Questions To Ask Before Hiring a Detailing Company

1) Are you insured?

Any competent detailing company will carry what’s known as ‘garage keepers’ insurance. Like in any industry, accidents do unfortunately happen from time to time. Whether it’s from the detailing process itself such as damage to the paint or while moving your vehicle in and out of the shop, it’s important for any professional detailing company to have themselves (and you) covered. 

2) What chemicals/products do you use?

We spend an amazing amount of time in our cars these days. Whether you’re just commuting to work or moving the kids around, it’s important to know what chemicals have been used during the detailing process. Many traditional detailing products contain cheap ingredients which can lead to health problems with prolonged exposure. Make sure you ask your detailer for MSDS sheets so you can confirm for yourself what’s being used around you and your family.

3) Do you have any customer referrals?

Here you could simply start by asking the company directly for customers who’ve received a similar service. Of course, the detailing company will likely just refer you out to satisfied clients, so you may want to go on the web and check out websites such as yelp.com or bbb.org to get a more realistic picture of company’s rating.

4) How long should I expect the protectants and coatings to last?

Depending on the service level you select, most detailing companies will apply sealants and protectants to your vehicle. Get a clear understanding and expectation of how long these should last. Be wary of any company that claims a protectant/sealant will last for 6+ months as the majority of products on the market today will begin to degrade after 2 – 3 months from application.

5) What is included/not included with my service package?

Make sure you fully understand what you’re paying for. Many times a company will have you bring your vehicle to the shop first for a walkthrough to address any areas which will take extra time and incur additional fees. Excessive pet hair, odors, stains, damaged/scratched paint will certainly be addressed prior to starting the work so you’re not left with a surprise bill at the end of your detail.

James Dudra on Google+