Locked down: The importance of security - Professional Carwashing & Detailing

Locked down: The importance of security

Utilize surveillance equipment and other safeguards to keep your wash secure.

No matter how new or old a carwash facility is, security is imperative. Not only is it expensive to lose cash, merchandise and/or equipment to burglars, but vandalism can also necessitate costly repairs. Customers need to feel safe during the day and night hours so they visit often and feel comfortable using all of your equipment like vacuums, mat cleaners, etc.

Several elements of the carwash business make it a target for criminals. Many locations have change machines with money left inside, attendants are not always present during overnight open hours, and the presence of large walls can provide a canvas for vandals with spray paint.

These common crimes and other events necessitate the use of security equipment. Surveillance cameras can deter criminals for fear of being caught, and they can also record any illegal activities that do happen. Police often disseminate these videos through news and social media so the public can help catch criminals.

Technological improvements

Security equipment has advanced over the years to provide high-quality, full-color visuals. New technology also allows remote access, so carwash owners and operators can view activity at a location from anywhere with an Internet connection. This can be particularly helpful for operators who manage multiple locations. The widespread use of smart phones and tablets makes this technology especially valuable.

Digital video recording (DVR) also provides owners more peace of mind. No longer do owners have to drive to their wash in the middle of the night to find out what is going on at the location. Systems can notify operators when an emergency arises, and they can log in at home or other locations before taking action and calling the police.

Monitoring offers protection

Criminals tend to pick easy targets that present little chance of being caught. Since surveillance systems can increase their risk, they may choose to leave a monitored business alone.

The same can be said for dishonest employees. While not every wash experiences these crimes, they do happen and are often hard to confirm. Cameras can deter and/or catch anyone stealing from the carwash or taking part in other illegal acts on the property.

In addition to employees, monitoring systems can help to verify insurance claims that can raise insurance rates. Carwashes often have slippery floors, which can lead to visitors making slip-and-fall claims because they fell on the property. While many customers are honest, surveillance can help to ensure a carwash is not taken advantage of by false allegations.

Many insurance companies will also give discounts to carwashes with security systems in place. These discounts vary from company to company, so operators should check with their own insurance companies to find out what they offer.

Additional steps for safety

In addition to surveillance systems, tokens can be an added safeguard to ensure a secure wash. High-security coins are difficult to counterfeit, and often a token company will not sell the same token to different companies within a certain mile radius.

Tokens can replace coins and cash at a carwash. They are hard to convert to currency, making them undesirable to criminals. They can be used to activate any carwash equipment, including vacuums.

Doors can keep wash tunnels, bays and equipment warm, but they may also add to your site’s safety. Rollup doors are fast and simple, and polycarbonate doors provide more security by safeguarding equipment inside and limiting access to the bay.

Other objects to consider adding to your wash are bollards around building and other equipment that could be in the path of customers’ vehicles. Bollards are much less expensive to repair than costly equipment, translating into less money spent on repairs and fewer insurance claims made, which can affect rates.

Upkeep and maintenance

Preservation of surveillance equipment is relatively simple to manage. The water and corrosive chemicals used in a carwash mean care should be taken to keep security equipment in a dry, clean environment.

Regular inspections can ensure the equipment runs smoothly. Each piece of equipment should be checked and cleaned periodically to avoid any disruption so monitoring is not stopped.

For more peace of mind, owners can also add warranties to their equipment. This can help guarantee any downtime is lessened so equipment is running with few interruptions if a problem arises.

Continuously monitoring your carwash premises will aid in creating a reputation for a safe environment that produces clean cars. Just as having reliable equipment can generate a steady stream of satisfied customers, let a safe location add to your reputation as being the destination carwash for those in your neighborhood.

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