Featured profile: Zax Auto Wash

Featured profile: Zax Auto Wash

Following the business’ journey from humble beginnings to a bright future.

Sponsored by Car Wash Advisory

In the expansive world of professional carwashing, Michigan-based Zax Auto Wash stands out as a shining example of entrepreneurial success and dedication to quality service. Owned and operated by Brian Blaskay, Zax Auto Wash has evolved from a modest enterprise into a thriving network of 24 locations, with a remarkable journey that reflects Blaskay’s growing passion for the carwash industry.

Now, on the heels of selling the majority of his sites with the help of Car Wash Advisory, Blaskay is also excited for the years ahead, operating on a smaller scale.

Passion rooted in family and education

Blaskay’s journey into the carwash industry has deep roots in his family background. “My dad owned a sprinkler company when I was growing up and, in the winters, he worked at a carwash,” recalls Blaskay. “He learned the business and ultimately influenced me to get into the [carwash] industry.”

Armed with a degree in mechanical engineering and an MBA in business, Blaskay realized his dream of becoming a business owner when he purchased Zax Auto Wash in 2007.

Operating on a smaller scale initially, Blaskay discovered his true passion for the carwash business. With the support of his wife Katie, he embarked on a decade-long journey of expansion, growing from three sites to an impressive 24 locations. Blaskay’s unique blend of technical expertise and business acumen set the foundation for Zax Auto Wash’s success.

Core service principles and industry recognition

Zax Auto Wash has not only expanded in scale, but it has also earned accolades from vendors, industry associations as well as Professional Carwashing & Detailing (PC&D) magazine. As noted in the last issue, Zax Auto Wash, with 22 tunnel locations, is included in PC&D’s 2023 Top 50 List of U.S. Conveyor Carwashes.  

Blaskay emphasizes, “From the very beginning, our business has been built on three core service principles: To create a pleasant, welcoming environment for customers; to always treat all customers courteously and respectfully; and to stand behind our work to provide excellent carwashes.”

These principles have not only formed the backbone of Zax’s success, but these values have also garnered recognition from the industry, as mentioned. The commitment to maintaining high-quality standards across the board has resulted in numerous accolades, solidifying Zax Auto Wash as a trusted brand in the numerous communities served.

A network of success

Currently operating 24 locations, Zax Auto Wash is a blend of tunnel washes (22) and self-serve locations (two). However, Blaskay shares an exclusive announcement with us on his plans for a strategic shift.

“I am keeping five washes and rebranding,” shares Blaskay. “I am excited to transition 19 Zax Auto Wash locations to a new owner and I will operate the remaining washes. I am looking forward to staying in the industry on a smaller scale.”

This strategic decision reflects Blaskay’s commitment to maintaining a hands-on approach to his business, ensuring quality and customer satisfaction remain at the forefront.

One of Zax Auto Wash’s standout offerings is its fantastic monthly program, allowing customers to enjoy unlimited washes at a low monthly price. Blaskay explains, “It is a superior value we can offer to our customers and keeps them loyal. This type of program is becoming mainstream in many washes, so it is important we provide competitive pricing and high-quality washes.”

By adapting to industry trends and consumer demands, Zax Auto Wash has secured a loyal base through its innovative and customer-centric approach.

Success in the details

Blaskay’s hands-on involvement in the carwashing business, coupled with a comprehensive understanding of the industry, has given him a unique perspective of success. For Blaskay, success is not just a business metric — it is the joy of doing what he loves every day.

“I get to do what I love every day so, to me, that is success,” reiterates Blaskay, who is also quick to shine a light on the contributions of other key people. 

Acknowledging the importance of a strong team, Blaskay highlights the vital role of his wife and the support from Katie’s family. He also emphasizes the managers and employees who have helped to make Zax Auto Wash the premier carwash chain it is today.

“Carwashing is truly a team contribution and with the right team, success will come,” affirms Blaskay. Zax Auto Wash benefits from an excellent team of managers, employees and tech support through leading partners in the industry, as well as a skilled maintenance crew with years of experience and expertise.

Zax to the future

As Blaskay prepares to transition Zax Auto Wash to a new owner and operate on a smaller scale in the industry, he expresses excitement about the future. “Operating on a smaller scale, I will be able to shift my focus and spend more individualized time at my carwashes and in making improvements,” explains Blaskay.

Blaskay has ambitious plans for the future, including offering special promotions for valued customers and giving back to the community. He is also excited to follow the industry’s evolution, specifically as it relates to new innovations in the carwash industry, noting that technology for washes continues to improve.

“The technology for the washes just keeps improving, and it will be fun to see what comes out next,” he remarks.

As Blaskay transitions to the next stage of his career in carwashing, he extends gratitude to colleagues helping during the shift, including John-Michael Tamburro and Harry Caruso from Car Wash Advisory.

“Both John-Michael and Harry are dedicated and passionate about the future of the carwashing industry. If you’re looking to buy or sell or want a market analysis of what is best for your business, I would recommend connecting with them,” asserts Blaskay.

Zax Auto Wash, under the leadership of Blaskay, exemplifies the fusion of passion, dedication and strategic growth in the professional carwashing industry. From humble beginnings to a robust chain of 24 locations, Zax Auto Wash has earned accolades and customer loyalty through its commitment to high-quality service. As Blaskay transitions to a smaller scale, the legacy of Zax Auto Wash is sure to endure, leaving an indelible mark on the carwashing industry as well as its loyal and new customers. 

Car Wash Advisory is an M&A advisory firm that focuses exclusively on carwashes. At our core, we’re a carwash investment bank. We sell carwashes for owners. The carwash industry is brimming with more innovation than ever before. So much passion, collaboration and teamwork is being brought to the operating side of the business on a daily basis. We stand for bringing all the same — but to the transactional side of the carwash industry. For more information, please visit www.carwashadvisory.com.

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