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Car Wash Systems

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Car Wash Systems

Eric Morris
March 1, 2006

Over the years, since the first car wash Automated Laundry in 1914, automated car wash bays have developed into an immense number of systems, each competing with the other for profits and customer satisfaction. The U.S. has 66,000 fixed car wash bays and 12,000 mobile car wash units – Full-Service, Drive-Through, Coin-Operated, Flex-Service, Quick-Service and Mobile-Operated car washes are only a few in the competitive market. But all the categories can be classified under four basic systems, roughly termed as self serve, drive through, roll over and full service.

The most basic, of course is the self-serve car wash, where you coin-operate the system yourself and choose the cleaning functions for your car. These use timers to shut off water and soap after a particular time and charge extra for more water. But people don’t very often find space and time to go for self service and hence, the drive-through car wash bays have become the most popular systems in the country. These systems are operated by conveyor belts, and the cars go through different stages of cleaning, like rinsing, soaping, waxing and drying, at particular points in the conveyor.

The rollover systems are found next to gas stations and use unique electronic equipment that sprays water, detergent and wax over the car without using any brushes. The most expensive is the full-service system, which uses both electronic and hand car wash systems to give your car a thorough cleaning, both inside and outside. While your car passes through the conveyor belt, men flit in and out of your car at regular intervals to clean its interiors as well. This system also includes what is popularly known as the detail shop, which washes the car using machines or men before the employees polish and wax the car using a buffer. This is an extremely effective car wash system, as it takes off even small scratches.

Car Wash Equipment provides detailed information on Car Wash, Car Wash Equipment, Hand Car Wash, Waterless Car Wash and more. Car Wash Equipment is affiliated with Powder Coating Ovens.

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