Car Floor Mats

When you look at a well-detailed car, one of the first things you’ll notice is how clean the car floor mats are. Having car floor mats can save you wear and tear on your car’s floor and up your trade in value. You may not think about car mats all that much, but having a good set can make the difference between a worn floor and a showroom condition vehicle.

Car mats come in several different types. They are usually sold in pairs of four. They come in car or truck sizes and can be tailor made for a particular vehicle. Heavy duty mats are designed for industrial use such as tractor trailers that will see lots of wear.

Not only do car floor mats protect the carpet underneath your feet, they also help protect your feet from slipping. When you’re driving, you need your feet to remain on solid ground and not slip under a petal. A good set of mats will stay in place and have a rubber backing.

You can have car mats customized with logos, names and graphics. Many car mats are universal and will fit any make and model of car. If you’d like to add a little flair to those standard mats, you can get them with details that show off your personality and zest for life.

Not only will your carpets be protected from rain, snow and grime, but your shoes will too. If you’ve ever forgotten to replace your car mats after washing them, you know how awkward it feels to have your shoes slide on bare carpet. You’ll scrape the backs of your heels and end up ruining a good pair of shoes.

Having a quality set of car mats can really make a difference. Spills can be lifted up off the mats much more easily than if the spill occurs on the floor of the car. Stains like milk and juice can be deadly as they fester and smell. With a car may, you just lift it and wash it.

Look for mats that trap dirt and stones. Rubber edged mats with raised grooves are best for back seats where kids climb in and out. They’ll catch all the crackers and Cheerios that otherwise would be ground into the carpet for good.

Check online for car mats from cute to funny to elegant. You’ll love the selection and you can order them to match your car’s interior.

Why Hot Water Auto Detailing Equipment Is In Vogue

If you are looking to buy the best auto detailing machines, you need to know the features of the best machines, as well as the kinds of applications you will be using them for. Car wash machines are not always efficient – some so-called car detailing machines are not designed for auto detailing at all. These carpet cleaners or pressure washers are very ill-equipped to handle the rigors of commercial car detailing. Therefore, low productivity, frequent breakdowns, and high overall maintenance and operating costs are common problems.

Temperature Considerations

One of the major problems with auto detailing machines relates to temperature. High temperatures ensure greater cleanliness. Hot water for carpet cleaning and steam for exterior detailing dissolve grease, sugars, and other compounds and makes their removal easier. If your car detailing machine is unable to reach such high temperatures, you will find it tough to clean the caked, solidified grime, grease, and stains attached to tires, exterior surfaces, interior upholstery, and other surfaces.

Therefore, it is recommended that you purchase auto detailing machines designed for use in the steam car wash business. These machines are equipped with a variety of features that help improve productivity and reduce operational costs. In addition to these features, car wash machines sold by reputable dealers are tough, durable, and offer value for money. Let us look at the advantage of car detailing machines with high temperatures.

Hot Water Dissolves Grease

Car wash machines with hot water are able to eliminate grease and other sticky or caked grime more easily. The high temperature breaks down bonds in dirt molecules. Therefore, it becomes easy to wash away and/or extract, as with carpet extractors, the de-emulsified compounds that form dirt.

Hot Water Reduces Detergent Use

The hotter the water, the less detergent your auto detailing machine requires. Contractors find it hard to remove greasy dirt with cold water, and are compelled to use large amounts of detergent. The process is more expensive, as you need to use often costly detergents in larger amounts. Second, the more detergent you use, the more the likelihood of polluting the surroundings. Most of these detergents contain harsh chemicals, and therefore the risk to the operator’s health and the car surface is also higher.

The case of reduced detergent use is particularly applicable to pressure cleaners. Carpet cleaners do require that you pre-spray carpet and upholstery before cleaning to ensure a complete cleaning process. It is recommended that in this case, operators use eco-friendly cleaning solutions to eliminate harm to the environment. Green cleaners can also be added to pressure cleaners to maximize cleaning power.

By using green cleaning solutions and top-tier car wash equipment systems, such as hot water pressure washers and carpet extractors, you can eliminate these problems.

Hot Water Reduces Detergent Use

One of the biggest problems with vehicle interiors is the proliferation of mildew and mold, which lead to odor inside the car. While hot water carpet cleaners take care of this problem much better than cold water machines do, low flow carpet extractors on a whole leave interiors thoroughly cleaned and dry in as low as two hours. Such reduced drying times eliminate risk of mold and odor in vehicle interiors.

If you are not sure about the type of hot water carpet cleaners to purchase for your mobile car wash business, consider the frequency of carpet cleaning and the level of dirt on your carpets. Hot water is more efficient at removing stains, as well. The same goes for pressure cleaners, where heated wet steam output offers tremendous cleaning power.

Who’s Driving Your Car?

Who’s driving whom?

In the early 1900’s, there were over 2000 manufacturers making cars, over 1500 of these in the USA alone. Now, there are only 39 brands of vehicle which you can buy. Of these, 30 of them are controlled by just nine players. Six companies maintain some form of independence: Honda, Hyundai-Kia, Rover-MG, Proton-Lotus, Porsche and Morgan. Honda and Hyundai sell millions of units, the others are responsible for a comparative handful of sales. Therefore, we have just 12 companies who are responsible for the look and feel of the entire world automotive industry. No wonder my car looks the same as 100 others!

The great American Ford empire now controls the European Volvo and British Jaguar; General Motors Holden has links with Fiat, Subaru and Saab; Fiat in turn, controls Ferrari, Lancia and Maserati; Mercedes & (Daimler)Chrysler now own Mitsubishi; The ‘old commoner’ Volkswagon now controls the more prestigious Audi, Bentley and Lamborghini; BMW owns the almost opposite ends of the spectrum, Mini and Rolls Royce. Toyota has invested heavily into Daihatsu; Nissan has merged with Renault.

In the next few years, it is expected that further mergers and buyouts will occur, leaving perhaps five or six mega-corporations to decide what the world will drive. If you think that it is confusing now that we can buy Lexus, Lexcens and Nexus, or drive Barinas, Berlinas and Berninas… If you already think that it is getting hard to tell whether a car is a Falcon, a Commodore or a Toyota… just wait, things may get even more uniform…

In a few years, it may be possible to have everyone in your family driving a car with a different badge on it, (for example, Jaguar, GM, VW, Mercedes, Subaru and Mini) and yet find that the cash you pay out all goes to the one ultimate recipient company. (See Invest News #33 “Who’s Taking Your Money”, issued December 2004 for even more jaw-dropping revelations. Online at [http://www.invest.org.au/news] or ask me for a paper or email copy.)

Who drives the cars that drive us?

In the early days of motoring in the US, the Rockefellers controlled the Standard Oil trust. A few other companies, including Texaco and Gulf, were backed by the Mellons, Morgans and Vanderbilts. European capitalists rushed to develop their own oil industry, out of which came Royal Dutch, Shell, British Petroleum (BP), and the Petroleum Company of France (CFP), which eventually became Total.

Dozens of oil companies battled it out for most of the century; one by one they were defeated or absorbed by larger ones. The five super majors which today dominate the oil industry are the result of mergers that swept the oil industry starting just a few years ago.

In 1998, 12 already enormous oil companies combined to form five. Exxon (who owned Esso, Rockefeller’s “SO” or “Standard Oil”) merged with Mobil; then Chevron, which had already bought up Gulf and Caltex, merged with Texaco; Shell & Royal Dutch combined, BP bought out Amoco, Marathon and Arc; Total merged with Elf and Fina.

Watch the five, focus on one or two

Even if you only own shares in Telstra, it makes sense to keep an eye on what Optus, Vodafone or Virgin are doing. Are their deals better? Are their profits higher? Will their new marketing campaign mean that Telstra sales will suffer? Will bad publicity about the National Bank make my Commonwealth stocks worth more? Think about it. Now, back to oils and cars…

Exxon/Mobil Exxon is the largest company of any kind in the world as measured by sales, which totalled US$242 billion in 2003. That is more than the budget revenue of 185 nations, including Brazil, Canada, Spain, Sweden and the Netherlands. In 2003, the five biggest oil companies operating in the U.S. (ExxonMobil, Chevron-Texaco, ConocoPhillips, BP and Royal Dutch/Shell) made US$53 billion in net profits. Almost half of this profit was made by Exxon alone. Last year, Exxon produced US$21.5 billion in profits.

The five biggest auto companies in the world (GM, Chrysler, Ford, Toyota and Volkswagen) produced only US$15 billion in profits – combined. Twenty one billion… hmmm, that’s a lot of money… That’s a lot of profit. How do they spend it all? Feeding the world? Saving the whales? Or diversifying into other areas to make yet more profits?

Exxon has been granted over 10 000 US patents for new inventions in the last ten years alone. They also own the chain of “On The Run” convenience stores, and ‘smart-card’ technology based “Speedpass”, a system which enables you to pay for food and fuel by waving your key-ring in front of a service station scanner. You can actually fill your belly, fill your tank and pay for the purchases, with one company making money on all three transactions.

The word of the day will now have to be “ubiquitous”, as in “seeming to be everywhere”. Just think of Volkswagon beetles in the 60’s or McDonald’s restaurants in the 80’s, or the prefix “www” in the “noughties”. Now go to http://www.dictionary.com to hear an American accented robot pronounce the word “ubiquitous”… ☺

Shell/Royal Dutch

Every four seconds, one plane and 1200 cars are refueled by a Shell oil company. Shell also “goes green”, running hydrogen-powered cars, vans and buses in the USA, Europe and Asia. But the ubiquitous company doesn’t just make fuel, oh no…

Shell also makes the chemicals used in plastic bags, detergents, lubricants, clothing, packaging, paints, adhesives, unbreakable windows, plywood, computer casings, compact discs, foams for furniture and bedding, coatings for floors and furniture, artificial sports tracks, ski suits and waterproof leisure wear, medicines, dyes, antifreeze, PET drink bottles, car tyres, telephones, carpet backings, nitrile rubber hoses, footwear, road surfaces and neoprene items, like wetsuits.

Next time you are playing sport, it is entirely possible that you drove your Shell petrol filled car on a Shell-built asphalt road, walked on a Shell-made artificial grass with your Shell-built sports shoes, and washed down your Shell-manufactured pain-killer with a drink from your Shell-made water bottle. What was that word again? Omnipresent? Struth! Just thinking about all that different stuff made by one company makes me feel like I need a good lie down. Or was it thinking of sport that made me tired? ☺

So now what? You should be aware that there are only a handful companies who control the market for oil and cars. They are not going to disappear, nor will they get smaller. Even if global oil supplies do run out, and we are all forced to drive hydrogen, steam or electric cars, you can be certain that the giant oil companies and car companies will be one step ahead of us. Be assured that the major corporations have already manufactured the new breed of vehicle which will drive us rapidly into the 21st century, complete with its rubber tyres, rubber seals, plastic dashboard and foam seats all proudly manufactured by a major oil company.

When you realise that all of the major companies are interrelated, you start to care a little less which car you are going to hitch a ride with, as you realise that they are merely five carriages on the one train. Climb aboard any one and you will get to where you are going. Invest in any one and you will be sure to make money.

This article, email and its attachments are not intended to constitute any form of financial advice or recommendation of, or an offer to buy or offer to sell, any security or other financial product. We recommend that you seek your own independent legal or financial advice before proceeding with any investment decision. Oh, and be REALLY careful cos it’s a jungle out there!

Chemical Free Home – The Benefit of Alcohol Based Cleaners and Solvents

Alcohol makes an excellent household cleaner. Denatured or isopropyl alcohol can be used as a selective cleaner around the home on a variety of surfaces.

Alcohol of this type can have a drying effect on the skin. It is recommended you wear protective rubber gloves when physically handling this cleaning product.

Some of the the things around the home worth having a go at cleaning with Alcohol include:

Grass stains

Rubbing alcohol on grass stains on clothes can help prevent the stain from penetrating the fibres and sticking to the material permanently. Grass stains on Lino, Vinyl or tiled floors can be easily removed by adding a few drops to a cloth and rubbing the stained area until the mark is gone. Carpet can also be cleaned in a similar way. Before using on carpet or textile (clothing, linen etc.) test a small area to make sure it does not discolour the fabric.

Ink

Ink seems to be attracted to the material in a white business shirt. If you are in the unfortunate situation of finding a pen has leaked its contents all over your clothing Rubbing alcohol may help lift the stain. Be careful however, you may end up bleeding the stain throughout the area making it worse than it was to begin with. When the stain has lifted rinse the alcohol from the garment and wash independent of other clothing to remove any excess alcohol.

Dyes

Dyes such as hair dye will stain anything they come in contact with. Soaking towels or protective coverings in a mixture of alcohol and water may help remove dye stains. Alcohol may also remove dye stains from hard floors, bench tops or other areas where a spill is likely to occur.

Glass

Streak free windows can be achieved by mixing denatured alcohol in a 50:50 mix with water. Using a spray bottle (similar to a commercially available window cleaner) simply spray windows as you normally would and wipe over with a piece of paper towel or lint free cloth. This mixture can be used both indoors and outside. Be careful around window sealing rubber as the alcohol may loosen some types of silicone or may smear black rubber seals which could stain window trimmings or, timber weather boards and brickwork.

Grease and grime

Isopropyl alcohol is ideal for removing grease and grime from several types of material. It can be used to clean surfaces prior to painting with enamel based paints. Grease and tar can also be removed from automotive paintwork with isopropyl alcohol.

When using Denatured or Isopropyl alcohol as solvent or household cleaner always test to ensure no further staining will result from its use. Some stains such as ink may cause further running of the stain. Since the item is probably damaged anyway (due to the stain) its always worth a try. But don’t expect miracles. Prevention, as the saying goes, is always better than cure.

© Eric J. Smith