Looking for a better solution for your keeping your windshields clean? You know, something non-toxic and works like a charm?
According to MedlinePlus, windshield wiper fluid isn’t exactly the safest stuff. “Windshield washer fluid is a brightly colored liquid made of methanol, a poisonous alcohol. Some young children may mistake the fluid for juice, which can lead to accidental poisoning. Even small amounts can cause significant damage.”
Yes, I know you’re (hopefully) not drinking it – but do you really want to be keeping those sorts of chemicals in your garage and car… which eventually leak into the environment?
Windshield wiper fluid contains methanol, also known as methyl alcohol and wood alcohol. This extremely poisonous alcohol can be deadly to a child with just 2 tablespoons… and about 2 to 8 ounces can be deadly for an adult.
It also causes damage to the environment, leaking into the ground and throughout the air to further create pollution. Billions upon billions of gallons of washer fluid end up in the environment every single year.
Methanol also erodes pavement and contributes to the early degradation of the highways and roads, which ends up costing cities and municipalities more money to make the costly repairs.
Lovely stuff, isn’t it?
Luckily, there are some greener, cleaner options out there: ones that get the job done, won’t wreak havoc on your car, are cost-efficient, and safe for yourself and the environment, too.
We’ve done some investigative work to see what’s out there. Although the choices are slim pickings, it’s worth hunting them down, especially in the winter months.
EvergreeN Windshield Washer Fluid is one of them. It is a 100 percent plant derived alternative to conventional windshield washer fluid. It is also completely environmentally friendly, non toxic and biodegradable. v
EvergreeN is available in both summer and winter formulations. The Summer Formula is safe for the pavement and completely free of methanol and non toxic.
The thing is, the only economical solution that is available to manufacturers to lower the freezing point is, indeed, methanol, but EvergreeN has figured out a way to use just a trace of it. In fact, they claim it is the lowest concentration of methanol in any product on the market, and will not freeze down to negative 15 degrees F. The concentration in the winter formula is so low that is is completely non-flammable, unlike conventional winter windshield wiper fluid.
EvergreeN isn’t the only option, though. Other companies are following suit. Advance Petrochemicals Ltd. makes a methanol-free concentrate compound to remove sap, bird droppings, bugs, and other grime from windshields.
Their cleaner is completely eco-friendly and free from volatile organic compounds. It’s also safe for the car, causing no ill affects on the wiper parts made of rubber, metal and also paint of the automobiles body. Because it is concentrated, it also eliminates waste. It can be diluted 20 to 150 times with good ol’ water. Their product with antifreeze does contain a small amount of methanol, but they claim their methanol-free variety can be used in all seasons.
We also love Kristall Klar, a specially made washer fluid concentrate that translates to “Crystal Clear”. This windshield wiper solution is 100 times more concentrated than conventional washer fluid, and contains no chemicals. Each 30 mL measure makes 3L of washer fluid in total. The mixture has a pleasant citrus scent and effectively leaves your windshield clean and clear of bugs, grime, and other debris. It is also designed to eliminate possible damage to wiper blades, combating squeaks and shakes and reducing wear and tear. Designed to not cause extra damage to your car, it keeps paintwork, rubber, and plastic at their best. The formula is completely biodegradable, and free of phosphate, ammonia, formalin, and methanol.
You can also make your own, where you can test and measure the different ingredients to keep it as safe as possible, and avoid adding methanol.
According to this site, this is what you can do:
If you live in a warm area,try:
- 25 percent glass cleaner (like Windex) and 75 percent water, mixed with a teaspoon of liquid dishwasher fluid
- 9 cups of water and 1 cup of isopropyl alcohol mixed with 1 tablespoon of dishwashing liquid
- One gallon of distilled water and one cup of glass cleaner
If you live in a cold area,try:
- one gallon of distilled water mixed with one cup of glass cleaner and half of a cup of isopropyl alcohol
- a mixture of one part vinegar and three parts of water