Totally Tommy Mini Car Wash – Conveyorized In-Bay System

We haven’t yet publicly launched the Totally Tommy Mini Car Wash, but we announced this new product this week to our inner circle of distributors and customers, and I’d share it with you as well.

Tommy Car Wash presents: the release of the Totally Tommy Mini.

The Mini belongs to a new car wash market category (which we’ve pioneered), called the “Conveyorized In-Bay”. The mini car wash utilizes new technology and Tommy’s patented pod system to create a tunnel car wash with record low size requirements and, most importantly, cost.

Never before possible, the in-bay car wash is a sleek 24’ wide with a standard length of 75’ long. A turn-key investment, this in-bay conveyorized system starts at around $1,000,000 and includes everything!

Construction uses our pre-engineered format and can save over a million dollars per site!  The ability to operate this car wash with a single employee, or no employees at all (when combined with a gas station) provides the lowest operating cost possible. Its smooth processing and organized layout gives it the best design and operation efficiency.

Tommy Car Wash began developing the concept of the mini conveyorized in-bay system based off the success of our in-bay car wash conversion system package, in which where we convert a 40’ inbay automatic wash into a conveyorized tunnel.

Pleased with the flexibility of the conversion package, our customers began asking us if it would be possible to build an in-bay conversion system from the ground up. Simply put, our answer was no. It’s just not feasible to build a 40’ car wash unless the facility has already been built, since this size is not typically ideal for a tunnel system.

But, we began to ask ourselves, what would wrong with a 60-90 feet in-bay car wash system? In the past, we’ve believed these sizes are just not large enough to do the job, and shorter tunnels typically aren’t as successful due to the car wash’s lack of “substance” and cleaning power. Go big or go home is the plan for success in this industry, so we initially brushed off the idea of building a smaller conveyorized in-bay car wash system.

As we reconsidered, however, we began to discover more and more reasons why a smaller in-bay conveyorized car wash is the perfect fit for smaller demographics.

Many new site operators, particularly those who are operating freestanding express car wash models, are failing. More often than not, this is due to an excessive and inefficient initial investment.

As my Dad and I were surveying new potential car wash sites, I asked him: “Dad, why can’t we build here?” All the big franchises were there; there’s a grocery store, Starbucks, McDonalds, 2 gas stations, cell phone stores, Home Depot, Lowes, Applebee’s, Logan’s, Subway, and so on. “Well, the demographics are just not big enough to support a car wash business,” he pointed out, and he was right, they weren’t. So why can all these other businesses flourish, but we can’t? Perhaps, we decided, it’s because our car wash model is wrong! Car washes are an impulse business, so we need to be on every corner and have a business model that fits. The Tommy Mini Conveyorized In-Bay makes this possible.

To dominate a market (or at least give the competition a run for their money) it’s smart to build a smaller model on every corner – everywhere there is a McDonald’s – rather than one or two larger washes. This steps the competition up for both larger washes and in-bay automatic washes.

Allocation of assets: aren’t we all looking for the best rate of return? Let’s look at the ratio of assets in land vs. depreciating assets. For example, which facilitates the best return: building a single $3 mil car wash or building two TT Mini’s for the same cost? A standard freestanding express site typically is going to have about $2.2 million in building and equipment and about $800,000 in the land.  Building two TT Mini sites is going to give you about $2 mil in building and equipment, and about $1 mil in land between the two. Spreading your business out between two sites gives you a far more favorable ratio of assets in land, with less in depreciating building and equipment.

As a disclaimer, we recommend you never build a Totally Tommy Mini In-Bay system where a full blown express car wash tunnel is needed. This efficiency model is made strictly for smaller sites, smaller communities which don’t have the demographics to support a full blown express car wash tunnel.

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