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What is a Car Duster?

By Ken Black
Updated May 23, 2024
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A car duster is a tool that allows for the cleaning of dust and other debris off the outside surface of the car without the use of water or other chemicals. In many ways, a car duster looks like the cleaning end of a mop, with thick fibers hanging down and a softer surface in the center. Those interested in a car duster can likely find them online or through local auto parts stores.

The car duster works because the fibers are specially coated with wax. This wax attracts the dust, thus the undesired material is removed, not just moved to a different location to be redistributed. While the dust cleaner does not replace general washing in car care completely, it can help cut down on the number of times one will need to wash a vehicle.

In addition to the cleaning end, or head, of the car duster, the other major portion is the handle. The handle may come in various lengths, depending on what is needed for the the type of vehicle you have. Car dusters with longer handles often come larger heads as well, as it is assumed a vehicle requiring more reach will be a larger vehicle. A car duster of a larger size costs slightly more. Some makers of car dusters advertise the ergonomic qualities of their handles as an added benefit.

Using the car duster is relatively simple. Just sweep the duster back and forth across all painted surfaces of the car, just like one would a normal duster. Before each use, simply shake the car duster out and it is ready to go. It may need a more thorough cleaning occasionally, but the duster is designed to be used with a little dirt on it. The car duster can be cleaned more thoroughly by using cold water and a mild laundry detergent.

Some worry about the car duster scratching the paint surface. However, many car detailing businesses use just such a device without problems. If concerned, ask a local auto parts retailer if they have a recommendation. Often, they will be able to recommend a brand they have had few or no complaints about over the years.

The car duster can be a valuable tool in any car cleaning routine. Still, there will be times when a more thorough washing will still be needed. But for normal touch up every few days, the car duster will perform extremely well.

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Discussion Comments

By Monika — On Feb 06, 2012

I've been thinking about buying a car duster. The last time I was at the auto supply store, the salesperson was really hyping up their selection. However, before I make my choice, I need to read some reviews and find out what the best car duster is (and also the most cost effective.)

The ones at the auto supply store really varied in price, from about $15 to $30. I know that's not that much money, but I prefer to make an informed choice about my purchases, no matter how much they cost.

By starrynight — On Feb 06, 2012

@SZapper - I'm not really a car person either, but I do think a lot of people could benefit from a car brush. For example, in the summer my car gets pollen all over it. Instead of taking it to the car wash every two days, I use a car duster to get the pollen off of my car.

I hate having to pay to get my car washed all the time, so for me a car duster is kind of a stop gap measure between washings. I think it's saved me a decent amount of money since I bought it too!

By SZapper — On Feb 05, 2012

I personally could care less about how my car looks. As long as it runs, it's fine for me. But I also just have a regular, fuel efficient sedan. I don't have a fancy sports car or anything like that.

However, I have a friend who has a mustang, and I think it might be the love of his life. He has a microfiber car duster that he uses pretty much all the time. He thinks it's the best invention ever, and is always suggesting to people that they buy one for their car.

I don't think I will personally though. Unless I get a really nice car at some point in the future.

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