Should you choose an automated truck cleaning system?

Author: yong

Sep. 15, 2023



Every car owner knows how crucial a routine car wash is in maintaining the vehicle’s value and lifespan. With the help of improvements in car maintenance, wheels these days usually last longer. Fortunately, when it comes to keeping your car spotless, you now also have many options.


There are several types of carwashing. These are self-service, touchless, and automatic car wash. Most people would prefer professional car washing than to do it by themselves since it is quicker and hassle-free. However, does an automatic car wash do an excellent job of cleaning your vehicle? What are its advantages against washing by hand?


Learn all the answers to your questions below.


Is automatic car washing better than professional detailing?

Professional detailing is a little costly, no doubt. But then, it is worth every dollar that you spend. Experts recommend taking your car to a professional detailer once in a while to help maintain value and extend its lifespan. This type of car wash may take away the grime and dirt that may cause permanent damage. Detailing goes a step further since it preserves the quality of your vehicle.


So is hand washing better than professional car washing? Not really. However, the two types of car maintenance should be paired to maintain the vehicle value—these two work hand in hand to keep your car good-looking and trouble-free.

Operation of an Automatic Car Wash

Once you pay the outside attendant for the specific features you want in your wash (a basic wash or one with extra services like underbody treatment, wheel cleaning, and paint sealant application) you drive into the car wash and line up your tires with the conveyor track. Once inside the door, you shift your transmission to neutral and let go of the wheel and the conveyor engages either your left front or left rear wheel. Once your car is in motion, it will pass through an infrared beam that, when interrupted, signals a computer control panel to turn on the system. It also measures the length of your vehicle and adjusts accordingly.


The first step in the wash cycle is the pre-soak. You travel through a metal arch fitted with several small nozzles that spray a cleaning solution on your car to pre-wet the surface and begin loosening up the dirt.


Tire solution and wheel cleaner such as Armor All Wheel Cleaner ® may also be applied at this point in order to clean the rubber on your tires and remove the black soot-like brake dust from your wheels. These are often optional features.


Your car then travels through a series of long strips of soft cloth hanging from a metal frame moving back and forth. This is the mitter curtain and it is designed to gently wipe away contaminants from the horizontal surfaces of your car: the hood, roof, and decklid (trunk lid).


Next, you pass through the foam applicator. This is where a chemical cleaner is sprayed on your car through a series of nozzles. The aerated cleaner is often colored to make it more visually appealing and apparent. For an additional charge, you can have sealants such as Rain-X Complete Surface Protectant to your vehicle’s paint.


Next up, the scrubbers. These large, vertical cylinders covered with hundreds of small cloth strips rotate rapidly at ninety revolutions per minute or more. Two to four scrubbers are used to clean the sides of your car once the pre-soak has loosened up the dirt. Additional wrap-around models might also be present to clean the front and rear vertical surfaces.


Once the mitter curtain and scrubbers have wiped away the loose dirt, high-pressure nozzles – rotating water jets – rinse your car off with as much as 1000 pounds per square inch of pressure. In order to accommodate the hundreds of gallons necessary for this process, a high-pressure tank stores water. The water is usually recaptured and recycled back to the tank after use.


While the outside of your car is being washed, the underside might also be treated. Another optional service in many car washes is the undercarriage wash applicator. These jets are positioned on the ground and blast water upward to wash mud and salt from the bottom of your car.


With the car washed and scrubbed, the next step is the rinse arch. Nozzles in this metal frame spray clean water to remove any residue that remains after the high-pressure stage. Actually, there are up to three rinse arches: one after the pre-soak and mitter curtain, one after the high-pressure washer and undercarriage wash applicator, and one (the final rinse) just before the dryer.


Somewhere between the first set of mitter curtains and scrubbers, there is another set of each. These work in tandem with specialty products delivered by a wax arch that delivers either liquid wax through a set of nozzles, or triple foam wax through a foam applicator. The wax (different than the wax you might apply to the paint yourself and compatible with glass, plastic, and other surfaces) bonds with the outside of your car and helps to provide a waterproof barrier for several days.


Finally, once your car has been pre-soaked, scrubbed, washed, waxed, and scrubbed some more – and final rinsed – it travels through the dryer. The giant nozzles of the dryer force warm air across the surface of the vehicle to remove most of the water. Attendants with hand towels might also finish the job.


How long does an automatic car wash take for all these tasks? About three minutes – much faster than any other wash method. And, because of modern soft-cloth materials (or, alternately, “touchless” equipment), an automatic car wash works without damaging your vehicle.


If you want to keep your car in tip-top shape, you will need to clean it regularly – frequently. The simplest and best way to accomplish such a feat as often as necessary is to drive on through an automatic car wash.




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