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21 Car Wash Industry Statistics and Trends

Car Wash Industry Statistics

The car wash industry is very fragmented with no one company controlling a large portion of the industry. According to the United States Census Bureau, over 100,000 car wash facilities in the United States with Americans spending approximately $5.8 billion a year at car wash facilities.

Car Washes Are In Demand

A snapshot to consumer demand in the car wash industry.

1. The car wash industry is growing with facilities washing 2.1% more cars in 2012 than the previous year.
2. In the last 15 years, a 69% increase in car owners using car wash facilities rather than washing their car themselves have occurred.
3. An estimated 8 million vehicles a day are washed at car washes.
4. Approximately 65% of car wash stations also dispense gasoline.
5. 90% of car washes are owned by a small business owner.
6. An estimated 38 gallons of water is used for each car that is washed.
7. Car wash industry annual revenue including gas purchases equal $48 billion
8. $15 is the average price of a carwash.

Types of Car Wash Facilities

The following car wash facility types are offered throughout the United States in the following statistics.

1. Full-service car washes – 9,000 facilities
2. Exterior conveyor washes – 10,500 facilities
3. Self-serve car washes – 36,000 facilities
4. In-bay automatic car washes – 58,000 facilities

5 Factors to Growing Your Car Wash Business

The below video outlines the five main factors to growing your car wash business. Strategies to building a high volume car wash is one of the keys to succeeded in the industry.

Car Wash Trends

Most Common Seasons for Car Washes
The following seasons dictate the percentage of demand for car washes.

Winter – 32%
Spring – 25%
Summer – 25%
Fall – 18%

Busiest Days of the Week
Saturday – 25%
Friday – 20%
Sunday – 12%
Monday – 12%

Revenue of Car Wash Facilities

Depending upon the type of facility that is owned and operated for a car wash the following statistics can dictate trends in profit and revenue.

In-Bay Automatic Car Washes
1. Approximately 20,000 cars washed annually.
2. Average sale is $6.34 per car.
3. Average profit is $4.35 per car.
4. Average annual profit is $86,531.
5. Average revenue each year is $139,000.

Self-Serve Car Wash
1. Average monthly revenue per each bay is $1,489.
2. Percentage of time the bay is used is 10%.
3. Average annual revenue for a two bay operation is $41,000.

Tunnel Car Wash
1. Average number of cars washed each day is 45,750.
2. Average price of a car wash is $15.
3. Average annual revenue is $686,250.

Increasing ROI for a Small Business

The following infographic outlines ways to increase your return of investment to grow your small business. Over half of small business owners have no intent to change their business plans. This could become a contributing factor to stunting your own business growth and running into stagnant sales.


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