CAR Interesting.....

JRock10

Active Member
May 25, 2005
7,731
Nashville, TN FTW
Read about this from Professional Carwashing and Detailing. It's a little long, but thought you guys may be interested. Also, may be another tool in your box to promote our services over a full service tunnel wash. :dunno: Just a thought. Enjoy!

PC&D said:
OTTAWA, CANADA — According to a regular columnist on car care for The Ottawa Citizen, some carwash soaps can react with vehicle windshields and cause adverse affects.

The Nov. 14 article featured a question from a reader who had taken his 2007 Mitsubishi Eclipse to a touchless in-bay automatic carwash for years without incident. Recently, the vehicle came out of the carwash and the driver noticed the windshield was coated with a film that only shows up in the rain when the windshield wipers are on.

The columnist suggested the reader replace his windshield wiper, stating they were most likely the culprit, but also spoke to a service manager at a local Mitsubishi dealership. The manager told him some imported cars experience reactions between carwash soaps and the windshield material.

The reader said cleaning the windshield vigorously with soap and water, vinegar, steel wool, rubbing alcohol, all yielded no results. The columnist suggested he take a cotton ball soaked in rubbing alcohol and swipe the edges.

“If the surface of the ball is extremely blackened after one swipe, replace the blade since this indicates the rubber surface is breaking down,” the article said. The article also suggested cleaning the windshield with a good quality household glass cleaner and wiping it dry with a piece of crumpled newspaper.

“Never clean with steel wool as it can scratch certain coatings,” the article said.

And if none of that works – head to your local auto glass shop for an opinion on compound polishing, the article said.



Original Article said:
Q: I have a 2007 Mitsubishi Eclipse. My question is simple. I have been using Sunoco touch-less car washes for years without incident until recently. Since that wash my windshield has been coated with a film of some sort that shows up only in the rain when the windshield wipers are on. We will replace the wipers but I am certain they are not the problem. I have cleaned the windshield vigorously with soap and water, vinegar, steel wool, rubbing alcohol -- all to no avail. The glass appears crystal clear normally, but in the rain the film limits vision and is very dangerous. Have you any suggestions? I can't find anyone to complain to. S. Raymond

A: I called my local contact at Bank Street Mitsubishi to check if any service bulletins or publications existed for this condition, but none have been issued. Service manager Barry Gilbert remembered other imports he has worked with that experienced reactions between car wash soaps and the windshield material itself (and no, it's not just plain glass).In those cases that type of reaction required the surface of the windshield to be polished with a specific compound (not recommended for the do-it-yourselfer).
The other possibility is the one Barry and I agree should be explored first -- the wiper blades. Few wiper blades, no matter what they are constructed of or how expensive they are, last more than a year. The edges are degraded by freezing in the winter and high glass temperatures in summer. They are also the most neglected items during routine car washes.
Take a cotton ball soaked in rubbing alcohol and swipe the edges. If the surface of the ball is extremely blackened after one swipe, replace the blade since this indicates the rubber surface is breaking down. Clean the windshield with a good quality household glass cleaner and wipe it dry with a piece of crumpled newspaper. Never clean with steel wool as it can scratch certain coatings.


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If a new set of blades and a good cleaning of the glass doesn't do the trick, head to your local auto glass shop for an opinion on compound polishing.
 

Morgan06

Active Member
Jan 19, 2006
4,174
ELM, MA
Doesn't surprise me if they screwed up the chemistry of the soaps. I know they use either an acid or alkaline pre soak to break the road film then the opposite in the rinse as a neutralizer. If it was too acidic I could see it affecting the glass. I seem to remember a contact telling me they tested the ph of water in carwashes in Toronto and were getting readings of 13-14 ph.

I've consistently heard of drive thru car washes using acid based solutions, but never about it affecting anything other than the painted finish.

On a side note, I had a management position at a multi franchise dealership and a customer came back stating that we used a chemical that ruined her windshield. Turns out that one of the mechanics filled her windshield washer reservoir with transmission fluid. :rofl:

Do any of the pro detailers add this type of 'propaganda' to their websites? I'm trying to monetize my new business' internet presence with tutorials and articles and think this kind of information could help.
 

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