Some carwash owners may remember mat cleaners of the past. Technological developments have improved these machines so there is no danger to the customer. The newer equipment also offers more options.

“Mat cleaning has had much advancement since the beater-type cleaners,” explains Allen Choi, CEO of Clean World Distribution Inc. “Back then you had to manually hold a mat while the beater beat at your floor mat. Rubber mats were not allowed to be cleaned with the machine due to the possibility of getting stuck or even harming the customer.”

He adds, “Newer machines can now wash, apply chemicals, accept rubber mats and even dry in a matter of 30 to 45 seconds depending on the mat size.”

Some mat cleaners also use variable frequency drives (VFDs) to speed up production on heavy-volume days.

In addition to this progress, mat cleaners are easy for customers and workers to use. Owners can take certain steps to ensure people feel comfortable around the machines.

“Carwash operators can encourage their customers to use the mat cleaner by offering the mat cleaning service for free — for a limited time, of course,” says Choi.

Making sure customers feel safe around the machine is essential so they will use it more often.

“The operator or employee should always show customers the proper use of the machine. There should be literature [and] banners to show the proper use of the mat cleaner. Once the customer uses the mat cleaner, they will feel more comfortable the next time they come.”