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Dale's Automotive clothes washing machine.

 
Posts: 9002
Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
670
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This one is dead simple. I have a car. I have a Rubbermaid tub that I fill with water and a little laundry soap. The tub is filled to about 2/3, then the dirty clothes are added. This much water will slop out of a container, even with the lid attached, if filled with only water. The clothing works as a slosh baffle, and the liquid stays in the container. I like to do this on hot days. The cold water quickly heats up in a car that has the windows rolled up. An extra temperature boost can be realized if I empty my solar shower bag into the container. Nothing is very far away in Victoria, so I'm not putting on hundreds of miles per load. I just go about my business for a day or two and then dump out the container. Sometimes I refill it with cold water, for a rinse cycle. Sometimes I have a house that I'm demolishing and the bathtub can be filled with cold water for a rinse.

My car doesn't have air conditioning. The washing machine and shower bag absorb some heat, so that when parked, the car doesn't get quite so hot. After the washed clothing hangs outside for a short time, I drape it over the passenger seats and hang some of it by the belt loops on those hooks that are meant for hanging a suit. This turns the whole vehicle into a giant swamp cooler, when the windows are down a little. This low tech system works pretty well.

Damn it, I can't find a picture of the Rubbermaid tub. You know what they look like. Here's the shower bag sitting in the back window of the vehicle. It gets so hot that I often have to add cold water before using it.
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I knew  that should work.... OK ....now I have to  try it
 
steward
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Location: Maine (zone 5)
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Need extra agitation?  just add a few extra wheel weights to one of the rear wheels on the car to set it off balance.  Call it the " heavy duty cycle".  You could dedicate a good spare tire to it, and just run around the block a few times to get out the extra grime.  LOL  
 
Dale Hodgins
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Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
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I suppose I could get one of those lowrider jumping kits as well. I saw a Mexican American guy on YouTube who had his car jumping two feet off of the ground. It seems like this might burn a lot of extra gas. I've been doing this with work clothing that has to be just clean enough. I'm not sure how much of the cleaning is due to agitation and how much is from the time spent in warm water and soap. I do give it a little bit of hand agitation before dumping the water out.

It would be interesting to do a control batch, where one tub of clothing rides around with me and one sits in a hot sunroom or a parked car, where it would also spend lots of time in warm water, but without the sloshing of going for a drive. I generally don't have a spot like that, but I always have the car and I need to take my stuff with me.
 
pollinator
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Location: Kent, UK - Zone 8
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I think that people also underestimate how clean you can get clothes with just water alone.
 
pollinator
Posts: 117
Location: The Ocala National Forest. Florida, USA
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I'm sure the dirt roads around here would get them extra clean....
 
Dale Hodgins
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Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
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Michael Cox wrote:I think that people also underestimate how clean you can get clothes with just water alone.



Yes, when water is very clean, it will absorb many things. The rainwater falling on Vancouver Island is quite clean. Before it comes through our municipal lines, lime is added in order to reach a neutral pH. Acidic rainwater will eat the scale off pipes and it will destroy concrete over time.

I had a small tree at the farm that I cut all the branches off, leaving 6 inch stubs. Clothing hung there for a couple weeks of rain, came quite clean. I just gave it a good "spider shake" before putting it on.
 
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