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Can your car wash withstand the cold?

During the winter months, many car wash operators neglect to maintain their systems. Deferred maintenance leads to higher repair and replacement costs, as well as lost income due to downtime.

Prevent Frozen Pipes

A drop in temperature can cause water trapped in your equipment to freeze, causing burst pipes and equipment damage. Inspect the weep systems for correct timing to keep chemical lines, pipes, and pumps from freezing.

Wrap any exposed pipes to prevent them from cracking. In addition to costing money to repair, you may be forced to shut down a bay while repairs are made. Thus, you miss out on the profits normally generated by the closed bay. For smooth winter operations, prevent your equipment from accumulating ice before it’s too late.

Winterized Your Vacuums

In vacuums that dispense fragrances or shampoos, winter formulations should be used to prevent them from freezing and causing damage. The ability to use these services during cold weather will be appreciated by customers.

Protect Equipment Rooms

The equipment room is the heart of a car wash. It is therefore imperative not to allow equipment to freeze. Ensure that the room is sealed and sufficient heat is maintained.

Visual Communication

Ensure your car wash displays signage so that customers know what problems they may face during the winter months. It's easy for ice to form in a wet environment like a car wash. Post slipping hazards signage in your bays.

Cold temperatures can cause foam brushes to freeze. When bristles are exposed to other sources of moisture, even antifreeze foam won't stop them from be

coming frozen. Post signage that warns customers that frozen foam brushes damage cars.

Lastly, make sure signs are available to inform customers that your wash is closed due to weather conditions.

Promote your Products

Winter is tough on vehicles. Typically, customers want their vehicle's paint protected from sleet, rain, and snow damage. During the winter months, emphasize the benefits of ceramic coatings and sealants.

In addition, ice prevention treatments can corrode and rust vehicles. Add salt removal chemicals to your wash packages and self-serve bays to attract more guests.

Driving in winter is dangerous, and it's even worse when you can't see. You should highlight products that will clean your customers' windshields in your vending machines and displays.

Your car wash can add another revenue stream with convenient and easy-to-use products that keep customers safe.

Equip Your Employees

Slips, falls, frostbite, and hypothermia are just some of the hazards that can occur in the winter for your employees. Put your employees' safety first by making sure they wear slip-resistant boots and weather-appropriate, waterproof gear, such as gloves, ear muffs, hats, and warm jackets. Winter gear and tools should be easily accessible for workers, and they should be reminded that they can use them if necessary.

Winter Preparation

For proper operation, boilers, water heaters, heating systems, and components need to be checked, fired, and cycled. Don't wait until it's winter to start them up and find out they don't work. Here's a handy checklist to get you started:

  • Verify fluid levels

  • Inspect glycol – change if needed

  • Check and test all units and water heaters

  • Inspect all piping and exhaust emissions

  • Double-check system pressure – pressure test

  • Inspect heat exchangers and scale build-up in tubing

  • Examine boilers and burners

  • Do a combustion analysis

  • Test for leaks and valve functionality

  • Look over your control system, electronics and connections

  • Check the de-icing system and set points

  • Ensure the manifolds are functioning properly

Have questions? Westech Supply can help!

Contact Westech Supply Co for any products, parts or services you may need!

Westech Supply Co. has trained, qualified technicians to handle any problem you have. We offer monthly maintenance or as-needed service; in most cases we can be at your location within 24 hours.

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