Car Wash Association


What is self-service power or jet washing?
Self-service power or jet washing is offered by mechanical wash equipment that is operated by the motorists themselves. The equipment typically comprises a 'lance' used to spray chemicals and water at high pressure onto the vehicle surface and also a brush which is made from very fine & strong strands to massage the chemicals over the paintwork and scrub away the dirt deposits.

How does it work?
Use of this type of equipment is usually offered either by purchasing a ticket for a
pre-set program or by 'buying time' by adding coins or tokens into a slot close to the machine. On pre-programmed machines, the system will sequence through a series of actions that will progressively allow the motorist to clean their car, Usually a siren will sound before each program step is finished to help the motorist finish in time. On 'buy time' machines, the motorist is usually free to select the wash functions by themselves, knowing that they can pump additional coins/tokens into the machine to prolong the operation, if required.

Where will I find a self-service power or jet wash?
Such equipment is generally found at either petrol forecourts or in professional wash centres.

What added services am I likely to find?
Self-service power or jet washing equipment is frequently found on forecourts or in wash centre and as such you have the use of the full forecourt or wash center services.

How safe is it?
This type of equipment is customarily very safe; however it is always advisable to rinse the brush head before use to ensure that the previous user has not left dirt or grit in the head.

How environmentally friendly is it?
Today's mechanical wash equipment is manufactured to use less water than in years gone by and with a large number of sites now have reclaim units that clean and reuse 90% of their water. All mechanical sites are subject to waste water regulations and as such the water from the vehicle wash will be sent through an interceptor and then into foul sewer and as such cannot end up in your local rivers and drains. Any chemicals used must be REACH compliant.

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