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Many full service car washes are faced with small to mid-volume washing and many new challenges facing the full service sector of the car washing industry. Some of them have converted to Exterior Only or Flex Service. A good amount of car washes being built from the ground up will be offering Exterior Only or Flex Service in place of Full Service.

There are many advantages of operating with Exterior or Flex Service, which are passed on to the consumer, customer and the business.

Most of Harvey Miller’s Car Washes were Full Service, the last one was converted from Full Service to Flex Service. Miller is now developing, from the ground up, an Exterior Only facility. The following are some of the pluses that we have found with a Flex Service Operation:

May offer 2 types of washing services – Express Exterior Wash or Full Service

Customer drives into wash tunnel and remains in their vehicle, regardless of service

If Exterior Only was purchased, customer has option to vacuum their own vehicle or simply drive off property in less than 10 minutes.

If Full Service was purchased, customer exits tunnel and drives to designated area for interior cleaning and drives off property in less than 20 minutes

This washing process eliminates a majority of a Full Service labor force

Business can remain open longer hours and on inclement weather days due to small labor force
Customers now have these choices: time of service, price, type of service, extended hours and convenience. Customer may purchase a Full Service wash, only when it’s required, avoid waiting in long lines and being delayed at the Car Wash.
This type of operation is much easier to manage, should not require an expensive manager such as a Full Service Operation

The following are some advantages and pluses for Exterior Only Washing:

Less property size and lower property cost

Demographics – lower requirements

Competition – can compete with almost any type of car wash

May develop in communities where Full Service wouldn’t be desirable

Site plan simpler. Should be easier to satisfy City Planning Department

Parking requirements – far less – requiring only 3-5 spaces
Labor - requires 3 employees. May hand pick.
Rising cost of labor will not impact this type of operation as it would Full Service or Flex Service
Expensive Manger not required. Manager or Supervisor can be one of the employees.
Investment and building cost lower. Remain open regardless of weather with longer hours.
No care and custody of vehicles – no theft of valuables - lower insurance rates
Appeal to broader market who desires price, convenience and Express Services
A simpler menu
Should obtain higher volume than Full Service or Flex Service
We can assist with the conversion of Full Service to one of the above services or work with you on building from the ground up utilizing one of these services. We have had hands-on experience.

We provide any services, including total marketing regarding the above concepts or any other type of car washing on a daily or hourly rate.


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