Waterless Wash

In New England, it’s impossible to keep your car clean for almost half the year— freezing weather, snow, salt, and grimy roads are stacked against you. With a tree covering my cars instead of a garage, birds really have their way with them. And frankly I just haven’t had the time to give them the attention they need. But the car care industry never stops innovating, and now they’ve come up with the “waterless spray wash.”

Available from Griots, Autopia, and others, the product is somewhat like a lubricating quick detailer with some wax as well. Unfortunately it is still water-based, so no washing below freezing, but it sure beats dunking your hand in a bucket of chilly water on a cold day. It is also potentially useful for a quick freshening say before a car meet, or while you’re off for a few days. In the past I dragged all my car washing equipment up to MINIsOnTop, here all that’s needed is a spray bottle and some microfiber.

I tried Ultima Waterless Wash Plus+, mostly for its cheaper price. I easily following the Instructions to mix a bottle from the concentrate. As I had a ton of heavy bird droppings, I instead went over with a very high-pile MF towel first. It works just like it says: spray on, and everything wipes away, transferring the dirt to the towel. For the most part it dries without streaking too.

While I thought this would be more of an experiment, I realized I will be using this a lot. It’s been years since I had the time to do a bucket wash every week, I sometimes goe months before dragging everything out. Now I can quickly and easily refresh both cars in between real washes with minimal time and effort. Of course, nothing beats a real wash, especially if you are going to wax afterwards.
Here are some before and after shots:

I went through about a quarter bottle per car, and of course at least one microfiber towel is needed per use. So be sure to have plenty of towels and solution. At Autopia, they have a Ultima Waterless Wash Plus+ concentrate kit, however I would recommend the much higher-pile Carrand “Microfiber MAX” Soft Touch Detailing Towel over the Ultima towel. Griot’s has the full line of their Spray-On Car Wash on their web site or you can get the Griot’s Kit from Amazon.

Posted December 12th, 2010 in bmw, cars, mini.

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