Compact pet wash installation for big carwash profits - Professional Carwashing & Detailing

Compact pet wash installation for big carwash profits

Why carwashes should consider catering to their customers’ four-legged friends.

It is probably safe to say a few industries will remain steady regardless of the economic climate. And, most consumers love anything to do with babies, marriages, pets, etc. The industries catering to these categories are likely not going anywhere anytime soon.

So how do we couple booming industries, such as the above, with the carwash industry? One easy way is by integrating a self-service pet wash into your new or existing carwash.

But, why pet washes? Simply put, carwashes that feature a pet wash are perceived as four-legged friendly — and the pet wash industry is soaring. Today, the simple novelty of a pet wash has morphed into a bona fide industry on its own.

However, this really isn’t all that surprising. According to the American Pet Products Association, Americans will spend an estimated $62.75 billion on their pets this year with $5.41 billion allocated to grooming alone.

In 1996, Americans spent approximately $21 billion on their pets. This means that the pet industry has increased by more than $40 billion in less than 20 years; that’s a whole bunch of quarters. In fact, this is more money than the increase in the general recent spending economy. Keeping these statistics in mind: Pet washes are good for business.

Treat yourself to profits

We are currently witnessing an upswing in interest and profits in the professional carwashing industry. It was a perfect storm of bad economic conditions which propelled a downturn in 2008, but a more stable economy is now driving the success of the self-serve pet wash industry.

Perhaps now more than ever before, consumers are being conscious of the value given to a particular service compared to their money spent. Despite this, however, as a whole we still love our furry friends. Thus, enter the self-serve pet wash station: a budget-friendly, economical, albeit fun, way to care for your customers’ pets.

Pet washes have evolved over the past half-decade. More and more, they are becoming less of an addition and more of an integration. With time comes experience, and with experience comes optimization.

Pet wash manufacturers have implemented new features and technological advancements over the past few years. Many now offer units that comply with Americans with Disability Act (ADA) design standards, which help make the installation process within a community much easier.

Further, more user-friendly options, such as credit card readers, are commonplace. This type of optimization has opened the door to new markets, such as integration with carwashes.

Optimization has encouraged refinement, too. As such, pet wash models are now available in all shapes and sizes. The most common types tend to be more compact and modular.

Now, let’s discuss a few popular self-service pet wash models perfect for carwashes looking to transform a small space on-site into a big opportunity for additional revenue.

Self-serve kiosks

One of the more original designs for pet washes is a self-service kiosk building. This type of pet wash is about the size of an average parking space. Essentially, it is a small, self-supported structure.

Though modular in nature, kiosk models are perhaps the most stable pet wash designs available on the market today. Pet washes such as these are often placed adjacent to carwashes. Utilities are then typically run to the pet wash from an existing infrastructure on-site.

Most models available on the market are outfitted with equipment that is both safe for pets and convenient for carwash patrons. This equipment may include specially designed tubs and sprayers, and also pet-specific soap integrated much like self-service carwash equipment.

Pet wash kiosks are unique in that many manufacturers market these options as year-round amenities. Advancements in heating and cooling systems within this pet wash type now allow carwash owners and operators to offer comfortable self-service grooming no matter what Mother Nature throws their way.

Walk-up units

Another self-service pet wash design gaining popularity in the industry is a walk-up unit. This type of unit is integrated into the infrastructure of a carwash. Carwash owners and operators often build an awning, much like that of a bank of vacuums, to protect the pet wash. Some carwash owners may also integrate the pet wash unit directly into a carwash bay.

Walk-up pet washes offer many of the same features as kiosk models with much less infrastructure needed. Industrywide, this type of pet wash tends to be an economical choice. On average, the costs associated with a walk-up unit are 60 percent less than a typical kiosk pet wash.

Fold-down features

In general, the trendiest, most compact pet washes tend to lean on one of the newest industry advancements. With the notion of “less is more” in mind, more compact varieties seem to be hitting the market every day, and some models actually fold into place.

This type of design ticks the adaptability mark, and it’s almost as if it was created with self-serve carwash owners in mind. It can be placed virtually anywhere, but its unique design is ideal for use in self-service carwash bays.

The trim nature and fold-down tub require minimal floor space. Self-service carwash bays can now easily double as pet wash bays, too.

Pet washes continue to evolve

Pet wash manufacturers are certainly keeping owners and operators in mind as they continually redefine today’s pet washes. Several great options are available, and many manufacturers have truly done a great job of understanding the needs of carwash owners, making sure to adapt their products accordingly.

Pet washes can be unique and practical add-ons for carwashes. It is no secret that this type of additional profit center attracts new, pet-owning clientele to your location; and, suddenly, your carwash becomes a one-stop shop. Expect to have a steady additional income from your pet wash.

Installing a pet wash is a feel-good, safe bet for great exposure. People love their pets, and many are willing to spend more money for the convenience and care of their beloved companions. Just turn to social media to understand owners’ love affair with their pets. An informal Instagram search shows 12,629,391 results for #ilovemydog.

Channel this excitement for profitable carwash ventures. Pet washes may just be the right undertaking to get you there.


Heather Steines is the executive vice president of All Paws Pet Wash. Since 2009, All Paws Pet Wash has been the leading manufacturer of modular pet wash units. The company strives to be on the cutting edge of the self-serve pet wash industry. Here’s to a Tail Waggin’ Good Time!© For more information, visit and/or call 800-537-8231.

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