Hands-on with Eco Touch Wheel Cleaner

Keeping your car’s wheels clean isn’t just about looks, it also prevents damage from taking place. Every time you drive your vehicle brake dust is created from the friction between the brake pad and the rotor. If left untreated, these tiny particles will accumulate and slowly eat away at the coating and eventually pit your wheels.

Eco Touch Wheel Cleaner was designed to quickly and safely remove all types of brake dust from your wheels. Traditionally, car enthusiasts and detailers would rely on harsh acids (hydrofluoric and sulfuric) to do the job. While these products are effective they have serious health concerns and when used improperly they can actually do more damage to the wheel itself. Eco Touch Wheel Cleaner uses a proprietary mix of plant-based cleaning agents and natural citric acid to effectively clean car wheels. For 2013 we also changed out the sprayer head which creates a generous amount of foam when the product is applied.

Dirty Wheel

Start by spraying down the wheel completely and letting it dwell on the surface for a minimum of 30 seconds. You can also use Wheel Cleaner on the rubber tire if it needs cleaned.Wheel Cleaner Spray

After the product has been allowed to work on the surface, take a towel (microfiber or terry) and wipe clean. Quick tip – some detailers prefer using a soft wheel brush as this aids the cleaning process and removes heavily soiled areas more effectively.

While many traditional products state the wheel should be ‘rinsed’ clean, we do not recommend this practice! The highly toxic brake-dust mixture is a complete hazard for the environment and should never be directly released. Alternatively, we suggest wiping the wheel clean and laundering as normal.IMG_4038

That’s it, you’re done with the cleaning process! If you wish to add a protectant to help prevent future build-up, we suggest applying either Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash or Quick Wax. Both contain polymers that are safe for wheel finishes and will give a nice shine.

Eco Touch makes a full range of wheel cleaning products available in 24 oz. and 1-gallon re-fills. Purchase online at ecotouch.net.
Wheel Cleaner Clean

The Best Uses of Eco Touch All Purpose

Eco Touch All Purpose  is one of our most versatile products for interior and exterior auto cleaning. Many times we get asked where specifically the product is best used. Whether you are a detailer or DIY consumer, we’ve put together a short pictorial outlining the product.

engine degreaser using eco touch

Engine degreasing.

One area where All Purpose excels is as an engine degreaser. Granted, unless you are doing car shows the average person really doesn’t have much use for engine cleaning/degreasing, unless you just like keeping things tidy. Before you start spraying down the engine components make sure the car has been turned off and everything is cool to the touch. To help avoid overspray you can apply All Purpose directly onto a microfiber towel and wipe. However, some spots may require you spraying the formula and letting it dwell for 30 – 60 seconds for maximum effectiveness.

all purpose car cleaner

Door jamb cleaning.

Cleaning door jambs is one spot where All Purpose excels. Since it is safe for metal, vinyl and plastic you will have complete peace of mind when spraying down this section.

all purpose car cleaner

Removing old protectants using All Purpose

Removing old dashboard protectants is another specialty of All Purpose. Use in conjunction with a q-tip for those vents so you don’t miss a spot. Once you’ve cleaned make sure you follow-up with Dashboard Protect to restore the finish.

Leather cleaning (spot test first to ensure compatibility)

Leather cleaning (spot test first to ensure compatibility)

Yes, you can apply All Purpose onto leather. This is typically done when you have a very aggressive stain that won’t come out with Eco Touch Leather Care. However, we always suggest spot testing on an inconspicuous area to ensure compatibility.

Are there other uses for All Purpose you’ve found work well? If so, let us know!

James Dudra on Google+

Spring Cleaning Tips for Your Car

Spring is almost here, and you know what that means…cleaning. Your car has probably accumulated its fair share of dirt on the inside and outside. We’ve put together some of our most popular tips to help get your vehicle back in shape for the warm days ahead!

Exterior Cleaning

  1. Keep the dish soap under the sink! Dish soap should never ever be used to clean your car’s paint as it strips waxes and other protectants from your vehicle’s finish. This will leave your car completely unprotected and exposed to the elements. Instead, opt for a Waterless Car Wash such as Eco Touch that safely cleans and protects your paint in one easy step.
  2. Avoid washing your car in direct sunlight. Car wash products need time to work on the surface and remove contaminants. Otherwise you’ll end up with unsightly streaks. Try washing in the shade, early morning, or evening hours when the sun isn’t at its peak.
  3. Ditch the old t-shirts and cotton terry towels as they can damage your vehicle’s finish. Instead, go for microfiber towels. These cutting-edge towels contain thousands of tiny ‘scoops’ that safely lift dirt from the surface and help ensure a scratch-free finish. One example is the Eco Touch Microfiber Towel Pack for $6.99.
  4. Avoid the ammonia and alcohol-based window cleaners as they can damage tinted windows and leave you gasping for breath. There are many solvent-free cleaners on the market today engineered specifically for cars. Eco Touch Window Clear is a sovlent-free formula which retails for $7.49.

Interior Cleaning

  1. Give your console a little love. If you’ve neglected the dashboard start by cleaning with an all purpose cleaner to remove dirt and grime. Once the surface has been wiped and dried, you need to re-nourish it with a protectant. Make sure you spray the product on a towel first to avoid splatter on the inner-windshield. Try Eco Touch All Purpose and Dashboard Protect.
  2. Opt for a low-gloss protectant to help reduce glare while driving. The last thing you want is your dashboard acting like a mirror while driving down the highway.
  3. Don’t forget those vents! Dip a q-tip in a bit of protectant and apply to the vents to help reduce dust build-up.
  4. Not all carpet cleaners are created the same. Some contain nasty chemicals such as nonylphenol ethoxylates , glycol ethers and petroleum solvents. Spray these in your car and you now have a car full of toxins waiting to be inhaled. Instead, try a natural carpet cleaner such as Eco Touch Carpet + Upholstery – powered by a soy-based solvent.

James Dudra on Google+

Is a Waterless Car Wash Right for Your Detailing Business?

While waterless car washing has been taking off in recent years, many detailers (both veteran and newcomers) are not always certain if it is the right fit for their business. The following is a list of ways to know if using this exciting new technology is a good fit for your business.

1. Municipal regulations restrict detailers from openly discharing water into storm drains. 

This is a big one many new detailers forget about. It’s vital you check with your local/state government to see what regulations are in-place regarding water run-off. We’ve received numerous calls from detailers who have been levied hefty fines from environmental agencies. Many states on the West Coast (California, Oregon, Washington) have implemented strict guidelines which prohibit detailers from washing cars and openly discharing soapy wastewater.

2. Keeping startup costs low.

Traditional pressure washing businesses require a large investment in equipment such as: truck/van, trailer, water tank, pressure washer and reclaim mat. You can literally spend thousands of dollars before you detail your first vehicle. We’ve broken down below what a theoretical detailing business would cost using traditional methods:

Van – $15,000 – $25,000
Detailing Trailer (pressure washer and tank) – $2,000 – $5,000
Reclaim System – $1,500 – $3,000
Chemicals – $50 – $500
Drying Towels – $50

Total Investment Using Traditional Methods- $18,600 – $33,600

Alternatively, starting up a detailing business with a waterless car wash product can cost less than $100. Seriously. The fact that you don’t need to haul around a large water tank immediately opens up possibilities. Live in an urban area? You wouldn’t even need a vehicle to haul around all that water.

2 x Waterless Car Wash 16 oz Concentrate – $40
24 x Microfiber Towels – $40
3 x Empty Spray Bottles – $11.25

Total Investment Using Waterless Car Washing – $91.25

3. Meeting consumer demands for green products.

When ‘green’ automotive products first came on the scene in 2007 many traditionalists in the automotive industry immediately wrote them off. “Oh it’s just a fad, wait a few years and it will go away”. Well, here we are in 2013 and we continue to see strong demand from consumers for these types of products. Consumers want to feel that they are making a difference, whether that’s in the products they buy or the services they offer. They key here is not making them pay more for it. When we get asked “how much should I price my detailing services at” we always suggest looking at local competition and doing a quick survey of potential consumers. Many times you’ll find that consumers expect to pay the same as what a traditional detail would cost.

These are just a few ways you’ll know whether using a Waterless Car Wash is right for your business. Have some other ideas? Let us know!

James Dudra on Google+

Come join Eco Touch at Autogeek’s 2013 Detail Fest

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Eco Touch is heading down to Stuart, FL for the 8th annual Autogeek Detail Fest. We’ll be giving out samples, literature and doing demos with the line. If you haven’t been before, Detail Fest is an excellent way to connect with the vendors in the automotive car care industry.

Hope you can join us!

March 22 – 23, 2013
9am – 4pm
Autogeek Detail Fest
7744 SW Jack James Dr.
Stuart, FL 34997

detailfest

Starting a Mobile Detailing Business? Check out Eco Touch’s new Detailer’s Starter Kit!

For anyone just getting started in the detailing business, you’ll quickly realize just how many different products are on the market today. While it’s great to have a variety of choices, it can become overwhelming and frustrating trying to figure out exactly what you need to get up and running quickly and efficiently.

Since Eco Touch launched back in 2007, we’ve spoken with thousands of new detailers getting into the business and helped them select just the right amount of product they need to begin operations. Based on our experience, we are pleased to announce the Eco Touch Detailer’s Starter Kit!

Detailer’s Starter Kit – Level 1
This kit was designed for a fixed or mobile detailer who wants to get into the industry, without committing to a large inventory of product. We’ve included enough Eco Touch to perform upwards of 250 waterless car washes. In addition, you’ll have product for waxing, protecting, cleaning and degreasing every other part of the vehicle’s exterior and interior surfaces.

The Detailer’s Starter Kit retails for $499 with FREE Shipping throughout the continental United States. This is an incredible savings of over $70 versus buying each product individually!

Click here to learn more about our Detailer’s Starter Kit. 

What’s included:

Exterior
1 x Waterless Car Wash Concentrate 1-gallon
1 x All Purpose 1-gallon
1 x Tire Shine 1-gallon
1 x Quick Wax 1-gallon
1 x Wheel Cleaner 1-gallon
1 x Window Clear 1-gallon 

Interior
1 x Carpet + Upholstery 1-gallon
1 x Dashboard Protect 1-gallon
1 x Leather Care 1-gallon
1 x Odor Eliminator 1-gallon

Accessories
1 x Microfiber Towel 12-pack
1 x Glass Towel 12-pack
3 x Tire Dressing Applicators
7 x Empty Spray Bottles 24 oz.
2 x Empty Spray Bottles 16 oz.
1 x Empty Spray Bottle 8 oz.

Detailer's Starter Kit by Eco Touch

James Dudra on Google+

Detailer Showcase – Eco Performance, New Zealand

Eco Performance Logo

Over the past few years we’ve had the pleasure of working with Eco Performance based out of New Zealand. Eco Performance offers detailing services throughout the greater Christchurch area and is an authorized Eco Touch dealer. We sat down with owner Stephen Vogel and chatted about his experience in the industry, waterless car washing, and using Eco Touch products.

Can you give us a brief history of Eco Performance?

I had wanted to start my own business for a while but wasn’t entirely sure about what direction to go in. I had looked a various franchises but they all felt, to me, like I was buying a job. I started Eco Performance in late 2009 after coming across the concept of “waterless washing” during a late night Google search on business ideas. Initially it was part time, weekends and some evenings. I enjoyed the work and the customer base started to grow. I was unsure about giving up full time employment to go out on my own but in early 2010 I was made redundant from my job so that decision was made for me in the end! It’s never easy building a business from scratch but our customer base has grown significantly and includes regional councils, major corporations, rental companies, car manufacturers and of course a loyal base of private customers.

RoverHave you always been in the auto detailing world? What got you started?

I had absolutely no experience of the detailing world when I started! That said I have always had an interest in cars. When I was running the business part time I used that opportunity to build a skill base and took on board lots of advice and feedback. During those early days I just focused on “cleaning cars”, now the business has grown to full service detailing and all that entails. Plus it’s not just cars now, its cars, boats, campervans, motorcycles…..

What has the response in New Zealand been to Waterless Car Washing? Have people accepted it?

People have been very accepting of waterless car washing in New Zealand. There is certainly a lot of curiosity about how it works and barely a day goes by when I don’t get asked “how does that work?” When someone pays to have their car cleaned their biggest concern is obviously that the car looks great when you are done. My experience of Eco Touch’s Waterless Car Wash is that when used properly it actually cleans better than the traditional “hose and bucket” method. The environmental benefits are a pleasant surprisefor our customers and great point of difference for the business. 

Can you talk a little about your process for cleaning a car? Any tricks and tips you’ve picked up along the way you’d be willing to share?

Obviously from a business/customer service point of view there are discussions with the customer around their requirements and expectations before starting any job but the process for standard clean is usually pretty straight forward.

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- First up I have a good look around the car to make sure it isn’t too dirty for a waterless wash. If it is I will give it a quick pre rinse or if it’s really dirty it may need to be pressure washed and cleaned in the “traditional” way. I find 90%+ of the cars we do are able to be washed with waterless wash straight away.

- The first area I pay attention to are the wheel arches. These don’t often look that dirty when the car is dirty but dirty arches stand out something shocking on a clean car. Depending on where the car has been driven it may be necessary to pressure wash these areas even if the rest of the car is suitable for a waterless wash. The reason I start with this area is because cleaning them can often make a bit of a mess of the wheels and surrounding panels so it’s best to get them squared away early on to avoid rework (tip 1). 

- From there it’s basically working from the top of the car down then going back to detail the wheels, tyres and glass.

- So far as any other tips go, I wouldn’t want to give away and trade secrets :-) However the difference between a good clean and a great clean is often only 10 minutes – I always spend that extra 10 minutes to make sure everything is spot on. When working on a customer’s car I also always work off a checklist and go around the vehicle at the end of the job to make sure nothing has been missed. Often it’s the little 30 second jobs like a smear on a side mirror or dirt left under a door handle that can make or break a nicely detailed car.

WP_20121218 2Where do you see the detailing/car washing industry headed in the next 5 years? 

In the next 5 years I can see 2 trends developing in New Zealand. The first is an increase in demand for professional detailing services. New Zealanders have less and less spare time and coupled with the fact that Government regulation changes here are encouraging (gently forcing) people into newer, more expensive cars I believe there will be an increase in people wanting to pay to have their investment looked after. The second is shift towards more environmentally friendly products and services with genuine benefits. The key words there are genuine benefits. Every other product on the market these days is green or natural or kinder or safer and New Zealand consumers have ultimately become irritated by the vague claims. Eco Touch Waterless Wash has obvious environmental benefits and we have saved hundreds of thousands of litres of water using it. I have a few customers that got migraines/headaches after their cars interior detail that no longer do after switching to Ammonia free glass cleaner and water based cleaners and dressings. That’s an actual, tangible benefit. The vehicle detailing industry here has been as quick as anyone to claim they are green and environmentally friendly with most doing little more than meeting basic legal waste water handling requirements. Over the next few years they are going to have to start proving their claims to consumers or risk alienating them.

To learn more about Eco Performance, visit them online at http://www.ecoperformance.co.nz/

Detailer Showcase – Eco Green Mobile Detailing, Tulsa, OK

EcoGreen Header

One thing we enjoy here at Eco Touch is seeing how companies use our products and achieve professional results. Since 2011 we have worked with Eco Green Mobile Detailing in Tulsa, OK. DJ Patterson owns and operates Eco Green and does some incredible work using the Eco Touch line. Not only does he use them on his client’s cars, but he is also an authorized dealer for us.

As a detailer, what’s been your experience so far working with the Eco Touch product line?

Over the past 4 years I’ve become a very “green” detailer so I’m extremely cautious of the methods and products that I use. I have tested countless other car care products that claimed to be eco friendly and safe but I was never completely satisfied. When I ran across Eco Touch from a web search I requested samples of each product. After using them I could not believe that I hadn’t found them sooner. These products are phenomenal! Read more about our experience with the Eco Touch line in my blog post, “Eco Touch Premium Car Care”. http://www.ecogreenmobiledetailing.blogspot.com/2012/07/eco-touch-premium-car-care.html

BMW glossScreen Shot 2013-02-01 at 12.41.43 PM

Have your clients embraced the Waterless Car Wash concept? Why or why not?

Absolutely, humbly, I am the pioneer of Waterless Car Washing in Oklahoma. My clients are completely sold on the Waterless concept. Not just because it cleans better than conventional car washes but because I take the time to demonstrate and educate. Education is crucial when introducing a “new” method of anything. I’ve made believers out of some of the biggest skeptics.

What’s the dirtiest car you’ve ever detailed?

Oh man, any detailer that has been in the industry for a long time knows that eventually all of the cars you clean become a blur. If I had to think of one, it would be a Nissan Murano we tackled late last year. It literally looked like a murder scene! There is no way that it had been cleaned since the day he drove it off the show room floor in ’05. There were dark red stains covering half of headliner, 75% of the interior was dark but was originally a light color and the exterior looked as if someone took a scratch pad to the entire thing. It was horrible!

Are there are particular cars/brands you enjoy cleaning more than others?

I am a huge fan of Ferrari. My favorite is the 599 GTB that happens to owned by one of my clients which I have the pleasure of maintaining weekly. It’s by far the “sexiest” car I clean. I’ve got my eye on the F12berlinetta though!

Ferrari

Ferrari Interior

Ferrari ExteriorWhere do you see the detailing/car wash industry heading in the next 5 years?

With the help of companies like Eco Touch and green detailing companies like my own, spreading the word of the benefits of waterless washing, I believe that the industry will become more eco conscious. Droughts are becoming more prevalent in America and our water supply isn’t endless. Also, people are becoming busier so convenience is extremely important. We will see a lot more “mobile- based car wash/detailing” operations using the Waterless Car Wash methods catering to office buildings, shopping malls, hospitals etc.

To learn more about Eco Green Mobile Detailing, visit them at:
http://ecogreenmobiledetailing.com/

Interested in having your business featured on our blog? If you’re a detailer using Eco Touch products be sure to contact us!

James Dudra on Google+

Diluting Waterless Car Wash Concentrate

Many of the automotive detailers and enthusiasts we work with opt to buy our popular waterless car wash in concentrated form. Unlike the RTU (ready-to-use) product, the concentrate dilutes 1:10 with water. In other words, you need to take 1 part concentrate and add 10 parts water for a total of 11 parts. We’ve listed out some of the most common dilutions below to help save you the guesswork.

For simplicity’s sake we’ve rounded some numbers up or down slightly as a little rounding does not affect the performance of Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash.

  • 24 oz. RTU – pour 2.25 oz. (4.5 tablespoons) concentrate into 22 oz. water
  • 32 oz. RTU – pour 3 oz. (6 tablespoons) concentrate into 29 oz. water
  • 1-gallon RTU – pour 11.5 oz concentrate into 116.5 oz. water
  • 5-gallons RTU – pour 59 oz. concentrate into 581 oz. water
  • 55-gallons RTU – pour 640 oz concentrate into 6400 oz. water

You may find that as you get into diluting larger volumes of product it is easier to actually weigh out the product rather than measure. Here are those dilutions for your reference:

  • 5-gallons RTU – pour 3.8 lbs concentrate into 38 lbs water
  • 55-gallons RTU – pour 42 lbs concentrate into 417 lbs water

So, now that we know the exact proportions, how do we go about actually filling and mixing the product in the most efficient manner? Here are some handy tools to assist along the way:

1) funnel
2) empty bottle/container
3) water source (distilled or tap)
4) drum pump (optional for pumping from 55-gallon drums)

The basics needed for diluting.

Steps to diluting Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash Concentrate
1) Shake Waterless Car Wash Concentrate well. If the product has been sitting for some time a bit of separation would be expected.

Shake bottle well.
2) Fill your primary vessel (bottle or drum) with water.

Fill bottle with water.
3) Pour/pump out appropriate amount of concentrate.

4) Pour concentrate into water and shake well. If you’re diluting into a smaller container you’ll find the funnel is handy and won’t waste product.

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Now that the product is mixed together you’re ready to start cleaning! Make sure to seal and cover the mixed product in a climate controlled area for best results.

Can I use a Waterless Car Wash in the winter?

One of the most frequent questions we get asked during the chilly winter season, is if Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash can be used. The answer is both yes and no…and here’s why.

There are a few factors which will determine whether or not it’s appropriate to use Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash in the winter.

1) Outside temperature.

2) Temperature of car panels.

3) Condition of vehicle.

Let’s start with the outdoor temperature. If it’s below freezing you’ll want to proceed with caution. Eco Touch Waterless Car Wash does not contain any alcohol, petroleum distillates, or other chemicals which would lower its freezing point. From an environmental and safety standpoint this is obviously a great thing. Unfortunately, when it gets below freezing you may find that the formula does not work as effectively, or may actually freeze on the panel. If this happens simply pull your car into a sunny location/heated garage, let it thaw out and wipe clean with a microfiber cloth.

Our preferred method of performing a waterless car wash during the winter is waiting for a sunny day and letting the car panels warm up. Before spraying the formula, do a quick check of the panel by putting the back of your hand to feel if it’s warm. If so, you’re good to continue with the waterless wash.

Acura TSX with moderate soiling. Suitable for a waterless car wash.

Acura TSX with moderate soiling. Suitable for a waterless car wash.

One other factor to consider is the dirt-level on the vehicle. Here in New England during winter, we get some very dirty cars. If you see contaminants such as heavy salt or clumps of mud/sand, be sure to pre-rinse these areas first. Then follow-up with the waterless car wash. We always recommend “common sense caution”. If you think a car is simply too dirty, pre-rinse it. It’s okay to use a little water now to assist in the cleaning process. If your car has a light-moderate coating of contaminants you can go right ahead with a normal waterless wash.

So that covers using our waterless car wash during the winter. Have a question for us? Email it to info[at]ecotouch[dot]net.