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The Germans love their cars and, in most cases, make sure they run safely and are well looked after. There are a corresponding number of car washes in Germany – but which types of car wash are most common? We provide you with an overview in the following.
You can often find them at petrol stations, for example. There are around 14,000 gantry car washes in Germany. With these systems, you often turn off the engine after driving in, put on the handbrake and leave the car. However, at more and more stations you can also remain in the car throughout the entire washing process. But be sure to retract or unscrew the aerial! In some cases, the car wash operators offer to first remove the worst dirt from your car with a high-pressure cleaner. Actually, however, the system itself already takes care of this pre-wash.
The car is parked inside the car wash, and the gantry with the cleaners, the water jets and the washing units moves back and forth as required. The car is covered in a special foam cleaner that protects the paintwork, before the washing units get down to work. The roof brush, the two side brushes and the wheel washers precisely adapt to the contours of your car and clean it from front to back. In WashTec gantry systems, you can be sure that the special technology also ensures brilliantly clean rims right into every nook and cranny. Some car washes feature a separate underbody cleaning system. Clear water rinses off the foam and the dissolved dirt. An extremely thin layer of wax ensures that the car gleams beautifully and is sealed against dirt. After the final rinse with demineralised water and the blow drying, the car is clean, dry and protected against new dirt.
Far behind in second place are the around 2,400 self-service car washes in Germany. Since car washing at home is banned in most parts of Germany, these self-service stations are suitable for people who like to do the car washing themselves. The water used does not get into the groundwater or simply seep into the ground, but is collected, filtered and often reconditioned. At these stations, you can clean your car of heavy soiling with the high-pressure lance before you tackle the more intricate parts with the programmes "Foam wash" and "Spot-free rinsing". Often, at these self-service stations you have the option of completing the wash with hot wax treatment before the high-gloss wash provides the drying. WashTec self-service systems are even faster and more efficient without sacrificing quality, where washing and shining are combined in just one step.
They are the biggest and often the most sophisticated ways of car washing. The roughly 1,900 conveyor tunnel systems in Germany can be up to 60 metres long. With these systems, you can usually stay in the car during the wash. This is especially exciting for children! Make sure that you observe the instructions of the staff and retract or unscrew the aerial. Depending on the offer, the car already receives a pre-wash with a high-pressure cleaner before driving onto the conveyor belt, which slowly transports the car through the car wash tunnel.
Your car is treated with high quality detergents and thoroughly cleaned by the roof brush, side brushes and wheel washers. Rinsing with clear water, hot wax, re-rinsing with demineralised water and the drying section leave your car looking like new. Only at the moment when a green light comes on at the very end can you drive the car out of the car wash. At this stage, you may need to be patient during the drying process. Thanks to the linear technology used in WashTec conveyor tunnel systems, you can be sure during the drying stage that the two roof nozzles, the powerful side blowers and the brush dryer deliver perfect results.
Neither with a truck nor a bus would you fit in a normal car wash. This is why in Germany there are also about 650 commercial vehicle washes for the larger vehicles. They work on the same principle as the smaller systems, but have larger dimensions and adapt individually in terms of their height to the respective vehicles. Various programmes make it possible to carefully, quickly and safely clean a wide range of vehicles, from coaches to dump trucks. These vehicles require washing particularly often because they are on the road so often or are exposed to a lot of dirt.