The future looks green for the car wash industry

environmentally friendly car wash equipment

A greener car wash industry

When it comes to vehicle wash equipment, not only is eco-friendly technology better for the planet, it can significantly reduce operating costs.

Going green isn’t just a trend – it makes good business sense.

The current generation of vehicle wash equipment is kinder to the environment whilst still producing superior wash results.

Manufacturers are committed to innovation that reduces energy consumption, utilises technologies that save water, and the more efficient use of chemicals – all without affecting wash quality.

Today’s consumers are more aware of the environmental impact of their choices and want to be customers of businesses that feel the same way.

It’s a win for the environment, your customers and, importantly, your hip pocket.

environmentally friendly self serve car wash equipment
Istobal’s self-serve car wash equipment reduces water consumption by 33%, chemical use by 75% and energy consumption by up to 32%.

Environmentally friendly car wash equipment

Good Sight, in conjunction with our equipment suppliers, is committed to providing our customers with choices in innovative, environmentally friendly technologies.

We’ve known for a long time that sustainable car wash facilities, that incorporate water treatment solutions, generate significantly less water consumption compared to a manual car wash with a private hose or in a standard recycling car wash.

Washing by hand uses up to 500 litres of fresh water per wash. This compares to 70 litres when washing in a jet wash or up to 30 litres in a standard recycling automatic rollover.

It’s figures like these that highlight the importance of car wash facilities in the community and on commercial sites.

Self Serve Machines

Istobal’s latest generation of self-serve (jet wash) equipment reduces water consumption by 33%, chemical use by 75% and energy consumption by up to 32%. Their pioneering biological recycler, with ultrafiltration system, is capable of recycling up to 100% of the water from the exterior wash of vehicles.

Figures like these are extremely impressive, to say the least.

environmentally friendly automatic car wash equipment
Istobal’s M’Wash4 offers a saving of 7 litres of water per vehicle, equating to an estimated saving of 70,000 litres of water per year!

Automatic Rollovers

On average, recycling water used in a complete wash programme of an automatic rollover can save over 2 million litres of water per year.

Failure to do so would waste – and cost – the equivalent of leaving a tap running for 120 days!

In 2022, Istobal’s new M’Wash4 hit our shores and we were excited to showcase it at the Car Wash Industry Trade Show back in October.

Featuring Istobal’s latest innovation technology, the M’Wash4 can boast flawless cleaning, in less time, with reduced consumption of water and chemicals.

Its dynamic chemical dosing system automatically adjusts the product amount to the machine’s speed, halving the consumption of chemicals in combined cycles.

Redistribution of nozzles for the different hydraulic circuits optimises water consumption by 10% in the wash and pre-wash phases without impacting the end result. That’s an average saving of 7 litres of water per vehicle, equating to an estimated saving of 70,000 litres of water per year!

The M’Wash4’s horizontal drying system reduces power consumption by lowering installed output plus more efficient and economical drying by adjusting the airflow to achieve a superior result.

environmentally friendly truck wash equipment
The HW’Compak’s speed and flexible wash program mean greater water savings, reduced energy consumption and more efficient chemical usage.

Heavy vehicle wash equipment

When it comes to vehicle washing, the biggest water consumers are industrial fleets such as bus and train washes.

Istobal’s HW’Compak is a fast and efficient commercial wash system. It accommodates flexible wash program configurations and speeds, as well as independent control of the different solenoid valves, equating to greater water and energy savings. Additionally, dosing pumps enable controlled and efficient chemical usage.

Eco-friendly car wash chemicals

Vehicle wash chemical manufacturers are now seriously looking into ways to produce environmentally-friendly products, using raw materials, that meet the highest requirements for biodegradability – some of which hold the most important and demanding sustainability certifications in the world.

Reducing the presence of plastic in chemical containers is another way manufacturers are playing their part.

environmentally friendly car wash water recycling
Istobal’s biological purification and recycling equipment is capable of treating 100% of water.

Water treatment and saving water

When it comes to running an eco-friendly facility, it’s not just about saving water… Water treatment is just as important.

Istobal was the first manufacturer of wash solutions to develop biological purification and recycling equipment capable of treating 100% of water and obtaining the highest quality for subsequent use at all wash stages, including osmosis in the final finish.

Just one litre of hydrocarbons pollutes 1.000 m3 of water – the equivalent of an Olympic-size swimming pool. One single drop of oil is capable of converting 25 litres of drinking water into non-drinking water.

Istobal’s hydrocarbon separation and retention technologies reduce the presence of hydrocarbons in the water by 94% before it is released or reused.

Day-to-day operations

Over time, vehicle wash equipment wears.  With little effort, preventive maintenance is a low-cost way of prolonging the life of your equipment, reducing the potential of catastrophic breakdown.

Preventative maintenance is the key to ensuring your equipment is running efficiently and not overusing (and wasting) water, energy or chemicals.

Aside from equipment, consider switching to energy-efficient lighting.  Upgrade windows and roof structures to reduce heating and cooling costs. Add water-wise taps and cisterns to public amenities.


Not sure whether your vehicle wash equipment passes the environmentally-friendly test? Do you want to transform your business into a water-wise and energy-efficient facility, whilst reducing running costs in the process? Contact our friendly team for advice. We’re here to help and can provide you with an obligation-free assessment of your facility – often over the phone.