Car Wash Operators Seek OEM Assistance

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Advanced vehicle technologies are causing headaches for car wash operators around the globe.

According to a new survey released by the International Carwash Association (ICA), nearly 40% of wash operators reported problems with start/stop systems and forward collision avoidance technology stopping vehicles in automatic car washes.

The Association, which represents more than 15,000 car washes in more than 24 countries, says that 60% of their members reported issues with transmissions that will not allow a vehicle to roll in neutral. Vehicle owners and wash operators are seeing increased challenges and interruptions as the application of ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) increases.

Procedures for the proper operation of the vehicle are listed in most owner’s manuals but many vehicle owners do not read them or have trouble finding the instructions.

So the ICA is seeking permission from vehicle manufacturers to use the copyrighted material from their owner’s manuals to populate a web-based educational portal that will inform wash operators how to properly prepare specific makes and models for automatic tunnel operations.

“We are trying to help both vehicle owners and car wash operators by loading information on our educational portal,” said Eric Wulf, ICA’s CEO. “We need support from vehicle manufacturers to make this happen.”

While some vehicle manufacturers have agreed to help both the ICA and their customers by approving the use of their owner’s manual content, many others have not responded to ICA’s requests.

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