A clean car is the key to the overall presentation
Cruising downtown on a Saturday night in that bright and shiny, clean and polished car shows the world that you are successful and that you have pride in what you have accomplished.
These days a trip to the carwash can be a very rewarding experience or a disaster depending on the shape the carwash is in, the type of wash and the ultimate result–being a sparkling clean car with all side view mirrors intact!
Depending on the time of day, with after work and evening hours being the main time people have to get their car washed, proper lighting in the wash tunnel is an important part of the whole carwash experience. Also, it is just not a matter of proper fixture location but a matter of proper illumination levels to ensure your carwash appears clean, appealing and above all, safe to enter.
As you may notice, most newer washes now have plenty of big glass window space so people can see in and out and feel secure while inside the tunnel and enjoy the experience.
LED technology has resolved a lot of the old issues that used to be inherent with HID and Fluorescent light sources as a carwash offers the harshest conditions imaginable for any lighting fixture being extreme temperature shifts, constant vibration, and sometimes harsh chemicals and fumes entering and exiting. Old conventional lighting with lamps would constantly fail prematurely, vibrate out of their sockets, rust and lens would yellow and fade greatly reducing light levels as well as HID lamps lighting output would depreciate rapidly after two years causing an unsafe environment which, in turn, reduces sales and profits.
LED resolves all of these past problems as long as you use quality, performance-driven products from reputable manufacturers that are leaders in these type of markets. LED allows for a bright, uniform lighting source that is not affected by vibration, has a high-temperature tolerance in either direction and rated at 100,000+ hours light deprecation is negligible for up to 12 plus years depending on hours of operation.
Depending on the type of wash and equipment LED fixtures can be ceiling surface mount in a canopy or linear style or wall mount with cross light distribution inside the wash to maximize uniformity usually with 5000 K color temperature although some may prefer 4100K.
However, it is important to eliminate glare as a driver is stuck in that wash for three to five minutes and does not need an irritating glare bomb coming through the windshield, proper diffusion is required to make this a comfortable venue.
Most car washes tend to go with pure white light, but lately, there is a move to more exciting wow factor lighting through the use of RGB color changing LED which definitely increases sales and profits not just for the carwash but gas and in-store c-store purchases as well due to increased traffic volume.
Colour changing fixtures are easily installed above the glass windows and aimed at the side of the car as it passes through the wash or is stationary, and slowly colour changes as the rinse, soap and rinse cycles wash the car creating a kaleidoscope of wow factor colours and enhance the total car wash experience. Once this is completed the wash returns to normal white light for a safe exit from the wash.
New lens lighting technology from LSI in the form of patented silicone lens technology now allows for maximum output with fewer fixtures and lower installed costs so a win-win for all involved and increased overall profits for carwash owners and happy motorists!