Touchless Technology

Auto dealers benefit from advancements in touchless car wash equipment.

Car dealers often encourage prospective customers to shop around.  Thus, it is ironic that auto dealers often settle on one car-wash technology.  While friction tends to be the default for auto dealers, there is a variety of technologies available, so it benefits the auto dealer to also shop around when it comes to vehicle wash equipment.

The Right Touch

An option that must be considered is a touchless in-bay automatic wash system.  In fact, a number of recent industry surveys indicate drivers prefer touchless washes. Many drivers feel touchless systems provide a more efficient wash, without the worry about vehicle damage caused by brushes.

Touchless systems feature an overhead bridge with an “inverted L” arch that moves around the vehicle.

Nozzles apply detergents, waxes and drying agents, and high pressure does the final rinse. Modern touchless equipment sensors read the vehicle’s position, and adjust to safely move around and wash the vehicle, preventing contact and increasing customer satisfaction by eliminating concerns about brush damage, real or perceived.

Open-bay touchless wash systems eliminate the need to drive onto a treadle or between wheel guides, which can damage wheels.  A “virtual treadle” design benefits auto dealers by easily washing a wide range of vehicles—from sub-compacts to large utes, 4x4s and minivans. Today’s broad array of vehicle designs demands equipment that can wash all of them, including bull bars, lights, roof racks and hitches.

Many modern touchless systems are electrically operated through variable frequency drives (VFD). This eliminates hydraulics that can develop leaks, reduces maintenance costs, and minimizes downtime. VFDs optimise electricity use, minimising power spikes during operation. Also, modern touchless wash systems minimise water consumption, using as little as 80 litres per wash. Water reclaim systems can recycle part of that water, if desired.

Advanced touchless wash systems benefit from new controls technology. The best systems operate on a web browser that can be accessed by computer, tablet or smartphone, which gives real-time access to all operating functions. With a modern web-enabled wash system, the owner can remotely configure wash packages, program machine functions, and monitor wash activity via Internet.

Manufacturers in the industry now have systems that can wash up to 23 vehicles an hour – it’s not surprising that advancements in vehicle wash technology can increase CSI scores and improve Dealer operations.
The days of ‘the way we’ve always done it’ vehicle washing are gone, as auto dealers realise there are other options. Today’s touchless washes offer performance, safety, cost-consciousness, reliability —and damage free washing. So, survey your options, realising that a touchless vehicle-wash system may be the best choice for your operation.


Rob Lewis
International Sales Manager – PDQ Manufacturing, Inc.

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