Fleet Pricing


New Member
Just curious.......What seems to be the going rate to charge for car dealers? Is it based on number of vehicles to be done or what? As you can tell I am new to this........I really am trying to gather as much info as possible to make an intelligent decision as to where to concentrate my efforts. Thanks for any and all help.

Dan S

New Member
Well first of all Scrm............. It really depends what AREA you are from how .. Are there any other p/wer's in your AREA ?

I dont do car lots but I do know that you will need to become SPOTLESS in your washing ! you need to reshearch the DI method
aslo do A search on this BB to help answer your Question.

What area (State) are you from again ? I didnt catch it.


New Member
There are only about 3 PW businesses here in my county in N.E. Ohio. Atleast that is all they show in the Yellow Pages. I am looking at starting out with a cold water unit of at least 3 gal per min. and 2000psi plus. I kind of know where I want to start.... but I need to come up with winter work.....such as FedEx/UPS trucks. At this time I work pouring concrete and would like something less seasonal!! LOL! Any help is appreciated.

Larry L.

PWN TEAM - Moderator Emeritus
I do not do car lots,do a search on the board.

My 2 cents worth tho you need more gpm,3 gpm isn't every fast,you'd go broke doing FedEx with 3 gpm.


New Member
Your gonna want something more than a 3@2000. You should also consider hot soft water. Check with a FEW different venders in your area. Some of them can be very helpful, some just want to make a sale. Talk with a few of them and then decide who you want help from.


New Member
Thanks kbear and bigboy.....I know the gpm is too low, but it comes down to $$$$. Unless I can find a used one with higher GPM I will have to start with what I can afford. Re.: hot soft water....I was thinking the same thing....especially for flatwork such as sidewalks etc. Again I am doing as much research as I can at this time to make an informed decision. Thanks for all your help.:)


New Member
I do car lots and for someone to just want to jump in and do them you will need thousands to get it done right. If you are just starting out and don't have a machine, trailer, tank, water softener, etc. get ready to spend big money. I am not trying to discourage you. I am going to tell you how I do it and how I started. When I started car lots I already had a trailer with 3 machines, two - 275 gallon tanks, hose reels, and a water softener. So I already had a lot of money wrapped up in this. The only thing I needed to do was change around some plumbing on my tanks and get a DI (spot free water) tank. When we wash cars it is me and another guy. We actually hand wash the cars. We mit them down. That is why we get paid between $2.50 and $3.50 per car. A lot of guys do a DI rinse and get paid a $1 per car. I don't understand how you get the film off the car with just a DI rinse. Tried it and it doesn't work. It will take the thick dust off but still leave a film behind. First I will tell you about my set up. I have two hot water machines and a cold water machine on my rig. I use only cold water on the cars in the summer. In the winter I put some heat to it. I have to - 275 gallon tanks on board. The can be hooked together or ran separate. I have a shut off valve between the two. For car washing I keep them separate. I fill one tank with soft water that I run through my on board water softener. This is the water I will be using to soap the cars and do the soft water rinse(not the spotless rinse). The other tank will hold my DI water. A DI tank is a tank that looks similar to most water softeners. I run my water through the water softener and then through the DI tank and into my second holding tank. I use a splitter at the outlet of the water softener to control which tank it goes to. My wash water goes through my 5.5 gpm 3500 psi machine. My DI water goes through my little 4 gpm 3500 psi cold water machine. The DI water will start to eat up the seals in the pump after awhile so you will want to replace seals ever so often. DI water is slightly corrosive. It takes awhile for it to cause damage. Spraying it on cars doesn't do anything. When we start I soap the cars. How many you soap at one time depends on the sun. Temperature doesn't mean a lot. It is how bad the sun is shining. We like to wash cars at night. We can soap 10 - 15 cars at a time. In the hot sun you can only do 1. I have had it where I soap the car and you can't even mit half the car before it is drying. You like to be able to soap at least 4 - 5 cars at a time. That way you are not getting your other guy soaking wet. He can stay ahead of you a bit. Once the cars are soaped my other guy starts mitting them down. Once we get in our grove we can do a car every two minutes. I then go behind him and use a soft water rinse to rinse off the soap and then I go back and do a DI rinse. The soft water rinse takes about 30 seconds and the DI rinse takes about 10 seconds. He can usually mit the cars faster then I can rinse them all so he will also do some soaping and soft water rinsing. Our first couple weeks we looked a little goofy because you have to get used to each other. Now it actually looks coll because it is like we can read each others minds. We often use hand signals to communicate which cars have been been rinsed, mitted, DI'ed etc. We used to hand dry but that just isn't cost effective and it makes the cars look worse and takes longer. You get a lot of lint on the cars and then you have to spend time at home washing towels, etc. I can DI rinse a car in 10 seconds. Most people couldn't towel dry a car in 10 seconds. I have found a new vendor for my DI tanks so I now get them exchanged for $75. I can get about 1200 - 1400 gallons per exchange. So that is a little over 5 to 6 cents per gallon. I use about a gallon and a half per car. You can do this other ways. You can do it with one machine and without DI water. You will still need a water tank and a water softener. It all depends on the hardness of the water in your area. Hard water spots are tough to get off after they dry on the car. If you have one machine, one water tank, and a water softener here is what you can do. You can soap the cars, rinse then down, squeegee them off and then towel dry them. That system will work but I think it doesn't work as well and takes a little longer. You will still need two guys and you can't work in full sunshine. Soap will dry too fast. There is more to washing cars then meets the eye. I am sure there are other guys out there who have good ideas on how to do this. Maybe they can help too. Any other questions feel free to ask.


New Member
water softner for the power wash

could someone tell me where i might find and set up a water softner on my trailer unit?


New Member
Steve, I know it's from awhile back, but I gotta say, good reply. :cool:

PDP, you may already know that "DI" water is deionized (or demineralized) water. That should help you find something on the idea of the CRSpotless Water De-ionizer. I don't know just who makes them, but I've seen a lot of listings for them on the 'Net. A 100-gallon wall-mount unit would be around $300, and the 300-gallon version would be around $400.
Hope this helps.


New Member
What you’re looking for is "Working Units" or "Cleaning Units" which doesn’t necessarily mean you need a high GPM.


New Member
I have found a new vendor for my DI tanks so I now get them exchanged for $75. I can get about 1200 - 1400 gallons per exchange. So that is a little over 5 to 6 cents per gallon. I use about a gallon and a half per car.

Steve whos your vendor, everyone that i have found comes in around 26 cents per gallon for DI refills

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