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Originally Posted by xspeedy
Now you'll have to start a new thread:

"How do I wash my white cotton towels"?

Cotton (micro fibre) Towel :
Modern water-based paint is very soft and easily scratched making the choice of towel and wash mitt very important a natural 100% cotton towel is less likely to cause scratches to a paint system then a plastic fibre like nylon (Polyester).

Micro fibre by definition (very small; involving minute quantities or variations) is not a fabric; but a yarn, that's spun into thread, which is then used to weave a terry fabric. These ultra-fine yarns (2X as fine as silk and 100X finer than a human hair) are made form various sources, they can be made from many different materials, such as a 70% Polyester 30% Polyamide or a natural material such as cellulose, a plant carbohydrate. (AlpineFiber™ is made entirely of a blend of micro fibre cotton and pima cotton, 100% Cotton (50% Cotton Microfiber/50% Pima Cotton)

Its scratch resistance has a lot to do with the way the fibres are processed and spun, there are too many factors to be able to say conclusively that natural fibres will not cause scratches and artificial fibres will. In my opinion, however, natural fibres are far less likely to scratch, flannel or cotton flannel is a very tight weave and it could scratch as it mats down easily, always try to stay with a terrycloth weave. DF® Concours Towel is exceptionally soft, super absorbent terrycloth. The fabric is woven from a blend of micro fibre cotton and Pima Cotton; no artificial fibres of any kind are used in the weaving or sewing of this product. (For more information on cotton - http://www.supima.com/faq/index.htm)

The most important criteria for any fabric used on a vehicle surface is its quality and scratch resistance. Natural cellulose can be spun with long staple cotton and then woven into 100% natural looped terrycloth or velour, were the loops are trimmed to produce a fine nap (ideal for glass cleaning). This is very soft, absorbent, and non-abrasive and will not cause scratching. Once this type of fabric is washed two or three times, to remove any short fibres it will not leave a lint trail.

The principal structural chemical in cotton, wood, and most other plants is actually cellulose consisting of many small molecules linked together (monomers) in a chain or lattice like structure: both linen and cotton are natural plant fibres. Quality towels edge bindings are sewn with cotton thread, not polyester.

During use you may find that sometimes a thread will loosen or pull out, this is perfectly normal for terrycloth
Do not pull the threads as this causes the weave or stitching to unravel, simply trim the thread to about ¼-inch from the surface don't cut too closely.

Washing your towels on a regular basis to avoid getting them too soiled will ensure that they last longer, the more often they are washed the fluffier and softer they become. As with any fabric dirt particles, grease and oil and other contaminants can cause the fibres to break down, so regular cleaning will go a long way in preserving and extending the life your towels.

Washing Directions- Use hot (120oF<) water and add 1-2 ounces of liquid laundry detergent (Woolite) to a standard size (8 gallon) load, for larger loads or heavily soiled laundry, add 3-6 ounces. As a pre-spotter: dilute 1 part concentrates with 3 parts water, apply to stain and launder as usual.

Do not use fabric softener (most contain silicone that the towel will adsorb and it will cause smearing of the paint surface thereby reducing their effectiveness) towel will also treat the fabric softener as if it was dirt by trying to store the tiny particles of the softener in the towel fibres.

This will clog up the micro fibres and render the towel ineffective. Add a teaspoon per towel distilled white vinegar in place of a softener, the vinegar doesn't coat the fibres but instead works to eliminate detergent residue.

Vinegar (Acetic acid, pH=2) works well in the rinse cycle to make your towels softer. Detergent is an alkaline (pH=12, the opposite of acidic on the pH scale). Air dry or you can dry micro fibre cloths / towels in any dryer on low heat, remove them before they are still damp (cuts down on static charge) Colours may bleed during first washing.

A couple of 'tests' you could use to assimilate wither or not a towel will cause scratches, they are not at all scientific nor 100% accurate, they are only indicative of what the towel may do to your paint surface, but then which is preferable to scratch a CD or your paint surface? Ensure the towels have been washed before carrying out these 'tests'.

1) CD Scratch Test- with a micro fibre cloth, using medium to heavy pressure rub the surface of a CD. If no scratching is evident then it probably won't scratch the vehicles paint surface, be aware that the bindings can also cause scratching. If the towel does scratch the CD's surface that doesn't necessarily mean that it will scratch the vehicles paint, a CD has a much softer surface so use caution, initially trying an inconspicuous area

2) Burn Test- to test a material for polyester content, light a thread, if it emits a black wisp of smoke and then shrivels up into a black hard ball, its polyester and will probably scratch your paint.

Information resource- DF Alpine™ Towel website (http:// www.dftowel.com/microblurb.html)
 
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