Increasing Your Car Wash Revenue 

How the Self-Serve Underbody System is boosting revenue in St. Marys


Trying to maintain a competitive edge in the self-serve car wash market can be a daunting task. One might ask, what equipment is available to help improve the services that I offer? What can I do to increase my customers’ time in the wash bay? What will I need to do to maximize my return on investment? To help us answer those questions, we turn to the Self-Serve Underbody System that will change your car wash for the better, by offering your customers both a sensible and practical service in the wash bay.


Dan Detsch the owner of Windfall Carwash in St. Marys, Pennsylvania recently installed six Deluxe Self-Serve Underbody Systems; Dan owns two locations both including three self-serve systems. Being in the car wash business for 24 years, Dan has had the opportunity to watch his car wash business evolve by making smart choices in the services he brings to his customers. When he heard about an easy to install, easy to use system, that would increase revenue, he thought that it made sense and would add value to the current services he offers. Located in central Pennsylvania, Windfall Carwash felt that given the salt, snow, and mud, the underbody tool was a service his customers would use, and he did not have to think twice about giving it a try.


What is the Self-Serve Underbody System?


The Self-Serve Underbody System, also known as the Chassis Washer, is a service that installs directly into an existing self-serve bay. This system creates a new and fun cleaning option for vehicle owners to clean and maintain the undercarriage of their vehicle. Windfall Carwash implemented the underbody tool in October, and they have already seen an increase in revenue, customer loyalty, and positive customer feedback.


This innovative system is a simple solution to remove salt and grime that covers the underbody of the vehicle in winter, or dirt and dust in spring and autumn. As we all know, debris clings to the underside of the vehicle, and eventually will corrode the undercarriage out. With a simple design integrated into the meter box rotary dial, the customer is able to remove any costly and corrosive debris, safely and easily, by rolling the Chassis Washer smoothly under their vehicle.


How does the Chassis Washer work?


Within the bay, a wall or ceiling mounted boom, high pressure hose, wall bracket and weep bucket are installed. In some circumstances, a wall mount or ceiling mount boom may already exist, creating an easier installation process. The Underbody System is operated by a unique control panel located in the equipment room; this panel maintains the existing high-pressure flow, while diverting a second high-pressure option that powers the Self-Serve Underbody tool. This control valve utilizes any existing self-serve equipment and takes minutes to install.


Activating the underbody cleaning tool takes no more than adding an underbody option to an existing meter box rotary switch. Many car washes have an open spot or two on their meter box dial that can be filled with this cleaning option. In Windfall Carwash's case, they were able to utilize an empty spot on their existing meter boxes that allowed the installation process to go smoothly. However, if this is not an option, upgrading your meter box dial would be necessary for installation. If you currently have an eight position rotary switch that has no open spots, you would upgrade to a ten position; if you have a ten position rotary switch with no available spots, you would upgrade to a twelve position switch. Being fairly easy and straight forward, this process takes no more than readily available parts from your current supplier.


Clear instructions on how to install and operate the cleaning tool are included in a simple installation manual, along with the pre-wired and pre-plumbed control panel. Each location is different, so some hose and fittings may be necessary to purchase outside of the Self-Serve Underbody package, but for the most part all the necessary components for a smooth installation are included.


Why add this System to my Car Wash?


In certain market areas the Chassis Washer applies more than others. Specifically in the North-East, colder climates, harsh weather conditions, and all the debris that covers the roads, the underbody tool creates a demand for customers to easily clean and maintain the undercarriage of their vehicles. Furthermore, this new service can attract new customers from your competitors because they see value in cleaning the dirtiest part of their vehicle that needs as much cleaning as any other area; the undercarriage. In this competitive world that we live in, we are always trying to stay on the edge; with the underbody tool you will be able to maintain existing customers while also attracting new ones. Although the underbody system is new to Windfall Carwash, Dan has noticed his customers have adjusted well to this new service they have to offer and continue to give positive feedback.


Adding the Self-Serve Underbody System is a great asset to car wash operations where weather and the elements affect the undercarriage of the customer’s vehicle. You want to make sure your location applies to this service because if the undercarriage is not getting contaminated with salt and mud, the Chassis Washer might not be a good fit for your particular car wash location; geographically you have to be mindful that this service has its place.


 When a customer enters the self-serve bay, they are bombarded by a variety of services that the car wash has to offer. Most self-serve bays include a basic trigger gun with options to clean tires, pre-soak, tri-foam polish, wax to protect the clear coat finish, rinse, and a foaming brush to scrub their vehicle. With many owners searching for a convenient way to wash the undercarriage of their vehicle, the Self-Serve Underbody System is a viable option in the self-serve car wash bay.


What does Windfall Carwash's Dan Detsch recommend?


With the self-serve car wash becoming standardized, you need to set yourself apart by attracting new customers and pleasing returning customers. The Self-Serve Underbody System was created to seamlessly integrate into your existing self-serve equipment, making it an easy and affordable option for both car wash owners and car wash customers. Easy to maintain, easy to install, and completely affordable, Dan would recommend all car wash operators to consider including this new service if they want to add value to their service offerings.


If you are worried about your customers vandalizing or damaging the Self-Serve Underbody System, unfortunately you already have that issue with the other services you currently have available in your self-serve car wash bay. Do not worry though, the underbody cleaning tool includes heavy duty plastic, barring-less wheels, a rubber coated wand, reliable trigger gun, a heavy duty stainless steel swivel and boom, good quality hose and plumbing, and high quality stainless steel cylinder valves for controlling the flow of water. Built to last with very little maintenance, road salt, mud, or grime are nothing for this tool to handle. Proven to be reliable and compatible with all self-serve car wash equipment, the Self-Serve Underbody System will allow customers the option to clean the highly missed, yet extremely important undercarriage of their vehicles. When we asked Dan if he had any advice to give to other car wash operators, he firmly stated “If your location is right and there is a need for your customers to clean the undercarriage of their vehicle, install them in all bays, you won't be disappointed!”