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Martins

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Hey all! I am about 60 days into the industry after purchasing this 6 bay SS/IBA location. the price was right and with the Cares act paying the bill for the first 6 months i couldn't pass it up! I've been running through this forum reading and soaking in alot of information so for all those who posted great info i say Thank you! This location is right on a main road great traffic count. was built in 95 but has been let go and not well maintained. (if the old owners are on here sorry but lets be honest here) the location just looks worn down.

I've already spent several weeks cleaning the place up. first thing i had to do was drain the pits even though the old owner and environmental said they were fine for a few years. (almost full to the top see pic) The Wash has 4 of the 5 SS bays functioning. the 5th bay looks to have been inop for quite some time but also has some sinking concrete that would cause damage to a vehicle if they pulled in. So ill most likely wait until next summer when i can get some good concrete guys out to take a look. I have upgraded all the soaps that were being used. ive started replacing all the HP and LP hoses in the bays as they look like they are from 95. the wash had 2 change machines however one has been gutted & had birds nests in it etc. recently (today actually) just pulled that out and installed a bran new Hamilton w/mars val. (thanks for the tips on here for that) and the other is an old Hamilton with the Mars conversion. (will prob replace with new eventually.)

It has an old washpak 1500 with cat pumps and 1.... red one cant remember the name that all seem to be in pretty decent shape (as of now). it has a R.O system with a ground tank that is not currently working/hooked up. I recently put a down payment on all new in bay control equipment to be installed in the next 2 months. all new wiring, long hulls, face places adding switch options and adding crypto pay (dose not currently accept CC's) My plan is to add some in bay dryers and possibly a triple foam cannon however i saw alot of people here say their cannons didn't get much use. The IBA is an old hydrospray that dose not work what so ever and looks to have been cannibalized to make some other stuff in the SS bays work.

I Also plan to add alot more vending options, currently only has little trees and dry rags. (ArmorAll machine not working.) i have one broken and gutted vacuum on the NE corner. and the vacuum placement is very odd but not much i can do about that currently.

With all of that said.. it gets used! people are there constantly and it has rather close competition im at $1.25 for 4 mins in the bays (as i cant change it currently due to broken timer doors) and $.75 on the vacs. Right up the road is a worse condition 4 bay running at $.75 (unsure on the mins) and then there is a bran new wash with IBA and dog wash running $1.00 as well as free vacs. So my wash is making far less then i would like but its paying its bills with a little left over currently. i feel like the improvements i mentioned as well as power washing the paint off the SS bay walls making it look nicer again will help catch peoples eye and notice we are improving it.

Few questions i do have and curious if anyone else is having this issue. Once a week or so my (at the time) 1 change machine gets cleaned out. someone comes in at night and feeds it $20 bills until its empty or breaks (made 17.50 off that one night) and im talking $500-700 in quarters. WTF?! it makes absolutely 0 sense to me. my thought is maybe the local dry cleaner? or another wash? Im currently in process of installing my camera system to catch whos doing it but what can i really do about it other then trespass them. I've been thinking of ways to deter it however im not sure tokens would be a good choice in my area, i also thought about shutting the change machines down at night and making it CC only late at night. (this would obviously be after i get them installed.) any ideas on your end?

and lastly what would be some recommendations to get people talking about the wash again getting the word out about the upgrades. already made a FB page. working on google (as this wash has 0 online presence at this time.) but there's no mail box to get the google card so have to install one. i just want to pick your brains as im jumping in feet first!

Thanks for taking to time to read all my nonsense and looking forward to growing on the forum!

Marty~
 

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DiamondWash

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Install the Wyze Plug (www.wyze.com) for the changer and have it set to a scheduled time on the app to shut off at say 9 p.m and turn back on at 6 a.m that's what I'm doing at my wash and have customers use their Credit Cards at night to track any issues. But other than that you are on the right path to making your wash very profitable, the work you have already done says volumes about your investment and how much it means to you and I respect that very much.
 

soonermajic

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The question everyone wants answered is how'd you get th3"Cares Act" to pay your bills the 1st 6 mos, & how'd you even know about that option?
 

Martins

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The question everyone wants answered is how'd you get th3"Cares Act" to pay your bills the 1st 6 mos, & how'd you even know about that option?
Ive actually been looking for a new business venture for the last 2 years. was looking into a bunch of different commercial real-estate to add to my other business. Once covid hit i stopped. however this popped up on the market and the deal was too good to pass up. in the process of getting my stuff with the bank done my loan officer informed me if we completed the deal by sept 30th it would fall under the cares act program and the first 6 months of the mortgage would be paid for. So we closed sept 8th. and that was that.
 

Martins

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Install the Wyze Plug (www.wyze.com) for the changer and have it set to a scheduled time on the app to shut off at say 9 p.m and turn back on at 6 a.m that's what I'm doing at my wash and have customers use their Credit Cards at night to track any issues. But other than that you are on the right path to making your wash very profitable, the work you have already done says volumes about your investment and how much it means to you and I respect that very much.
Thanks! ill have to check that plug out. that's kinda what i was thinking but ill have to wait until the crypto pay is installed.... and thanks for the kind words! i take alot of pride in everything i put my name on. and once its up to my standard ill brand it properly to match my repair shop.
 

MEP001

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I mix tokens into my changer to deter abuse. If I didn't, I'd be losing about $1500 in quarters a week. I use the cheapest tokens and value them for a quarter, only mix about 5% in, and it's not a problem for customers. Nothing has been modified except for coin acceptors that take quarters and tokens. It got really bad during the COVID-19 shutdowns, at which point I bought 10,000 tokens and loaded the changer up about 20% with tokens. Now I make a little money off the changer, more than enough to account for maintenance.
 

MEP001

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i saw alot of people here say their cannons didn't get much use.
IMO the placement of the foam gun is important. I like to mount foam brush and foam gun on the wall opposite the meter with the foam brush hanging in the center of the bay wall and the foam gun mounted near the entrance across from the high-pressure gun and the meter. Another local operator built a wash and put the foam gun in the farthest corner from the selector and said no one used it. One day I watched some of his customers who would select the function, but they couldn't find the gun so they just went to another selection.
 

jack954

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tri foam in my bays is 2nd best decision (cryptopay 1st) that i have made. people love it, especially younger generation. for it to be successful you must make sure it works good!! some washes out there have it barely sputtering out. i followed meps lead with the token idea, except i put up the sign and didn’t use tokens at all as i didn’t want to replace all my slugbusters. problem was solved instantly, went from losing $500 in quarters a week to gaining $800. was worried customers would have an issue with tokens but they didn’t at all. also i have never accepted $20’s, just 1,5,10
 

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Martins

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tri foam in my bays is 2nd best decision (cryptopay 1st) that i have made. people love it, especially younger generation. for it to be successful you must make sure it works good!! some washes out there have it barely sputtering out. i followed meps lead with the token idea, except i put up the sign and didn’t use tokens at all as i didn’t want to replace all my slugbusters. problem was solved instantly, went from losing $500 in quarters a week to gaining $800. was worried customers would have an issue with tokens but they didn’t at all. also i have never accepted $20’s, just 1,5,10
I was also thinking about adding just a sign that said dispenses tokens and quarters just to see if it did anything. i was debating actually doing a token mix but not sure if i want too however from a few things ive seen here it may not be a terrible idea. except i just bought that bran new changer for quarters only im pretty sure. just found today was hit again both changers emptied of $1000 im assuming last night but i didn't get to the wash today until 4.. so i lost a ton of revenue (literally only took in about $30 but its also 40 here currently.)
 

KleanRide

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Agreed on the tri-foam.

When I bought the wash I'm re-habbing the tri-foam hadn't worked in years. Finally got around to fixing it about 6 months in, and with ZERO signage or promotion it's now very popular at my wash. Few customers seem to understand that it's more of a polish than a cleaner (a lot of people spray on the tri-foam and then go at it with the foam brush) but it's got a big show and kids love painting up the cars (and the bay walls) with the bright colors. Fortunately, it washes off tile block easily.

As jack954 said, it has to work well. Lots of foam and body with a consistent spray. If it comes out like weak soup it's a loser.
 

MEP001

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i followed meps lead with the token idea, except i put up the sign and didn’t use tokens at all as i didn’t want to replace all my slugbusters.
That's also what was done at my wash before it was mine. The sign alone worked for several years, but people eventually figured out that there were no tokens and abuse got to be too much. I did the same thing at another wash many years even before that, and it worked there too. My signs have read "This changer dispenses a mix of tokens and quarters. Tokens are good at this car wash only and are not refundable."
 

Randy

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I was also thinking about adding just a sign that said dispenses tokens and quarters just to see if it did anything. i was debating actually doing a token mix but not sure if i want too however from a few things ive seen here it may not be a terrible idea. except i just bought that bran new changer for quarters only im pretty sure. just found today was hit again both changers emptied of $1000 im assuming last night but i didn't get to the wash today until 4.. so i lost a ton of revenue (literally only took in about $30 but its also 40 here currently.)
I'd be turning off the $20 acceptance. A $1000 in quarters in one 24 period is a lot of quarters.
 

fastlx

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On my machines I just have it set up for one $20 then it shuts down for 30 min. Ended my problem with stringing also.
 

fastlx

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Also my change machines shut off at midnight and back on at 5-6am. They can use the CC in the bays if needed that late at night.
 

JCM

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At a couple of our locations the changers are shut off at night, we just use a simple timer on the outlet. One location is only cash and not effected by not having a changer at night. Most washes don’t get much use between 12 am - 6 am. Sometimes when we are getting our changers drained we will turn off $20 for a period of time and then turn it back on.
 

fastlx

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They are American Changers and you can set up the anti-stringing inside the programmer. I also use a simple timer to cut them off at night. I also set-up my Hamilton Gold Line for my IBA to not give a refund. Sorry if you put the money in, you get a wash. Eliminated that stringing issue also. Since they have to wait for the machine to time out on a non entry and then it calls me. You have to be smarter than the thief sometimes.
 

Martins

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Got her! Looks like they like stopping by at about 5am to empty them. My guess is its the local laundry matt getten some change in the am as they are a block away but i dont know for sure. However got my timer installed for now, i ordered the waze but with no internet at the facility as of yet i got these for the short term. Cant wait to watch their reaction when they see its off. My old machine ate one of there 20’s last night so i guess all in all not a bad night haha.
 

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Martins

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Also as a side note. As my automatic no longer works and i dont think im going to spend the money to have someone try. I probably have a ton of parts for sale if anyone needs any of this stuff. I dont know what works and what dosent soooooo.. I most likly will not have my automatic up and running for a few years (unless our revamp really drives the customers in.) i just dont think fixing this one would be worth it in the long run.
 

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