How much to tip a car wash (attentant or detailer)

Our lives are becoming more hectic. In fact, many of us are so busy that we don’t even find the time to wash our own cars. Over the years, there has been a great industry built on people doing this job for us. This industry is known today as car detailing and washing.

In Europe, China, and other major markets, customers use these services and pay their agreed price. American customers face the question, "How much should I tip my carwash attendant?" Do you really need to tip this person for the service they provide? That’s the focus of today’s blog.

We need to be clear about the difference between car wash attendants, and detailers. The car wash attendants and detailers would be particularly upset if they were referred to as one thing.

Índice de Contenido
  1. What does a car wash attendant do?
  2. Do You Have to Tip Your Carwash Attendant How Much?
  3. What is a Car Detailer?
  4. How much should you tip a car detailing professional?
  5. Car Detailer or Car Wash? What is your wish?
    1. 1. You just need the car cleaning so it doesn’t look so filthy
    2. 2. Your car hasn’t been cleaned in a very long time and you might want to sell it soon

What does a car wash attendant do?

Car Wash

An attendant may wash your car manually if your local carwash isn't automated. Automated car washes may have an attendant to help with the operation. If they are hand washing your car they may use a dual-bucket or power washer. They quickly scrub the vehicle with car shampoo, sponges and microfiber towels.

A standard car cleaning may include a basic vacuuming of your car’s interior, but for the most part a standard car wash only washes the exterior. Car wash attendants aim to remove all dirt and dust from your vehicle's exterior. They generally don’t pay much attention to close detailing, nor do they offer things like waxing, polishing or additional paint protection as part of the standard deal.

In an automated car wash, the attendant will be there to make sure the machine is working properly, to indicate if there’s anything you need to do to prepare to enter the washer, and possibly will do some extra rinsing if the machine missed something (though that’s very rare now with modern machines).

Finally, car washes attendants work in the forefront of the business. This means they are expected to provide excellent customer service. 

Do You Have to Tip Your Carwash Attendant How Much?

There is no need to tip an automated machine if it's just the attendant who is there to run the machine. For those washing the dishes by hand, you may offer to tip between $2 and $5.

You can offer tips to any attendant at any event or car wash if they have provided excellent customer service.

Because tips for carwash attendants may not be expected in every restaurant or with food delivery people, they are often very grateful.

Conventional carwash attendants might receive a tip of $2-$5 per wash. That’s a good base number from which you can work to calculate something a bit more generous if you feel the attendants have done a great job. 

People may offer 10-20% off the cost of the wash but it is almost always the same. An average US car wash costs $15. Car washing is relatively inexpensive in the US, and often costs less than an extensive detailing. You can still use your best judgement. All of the above numbers would be welcome by any average carwash attendant.

What is a Car Detailer?

Car Detailer

The job of a car detailer is obviously related to that of a car wash attendant, but any detailer would be quick to tell you that there’s quite a lot more to it. Because a detailer chooses to work as a professional, cleaning cars is a different job from that of a typical car wash attendant. Many detailers work as freelancers and start small businesses. They’re passionate about cars, and dedicate themselves to understanding the geography of a car and how best to clean every single exterior section, as well as every interior nook and cranny.

Car detailers offer a variety of services and are usually able to sell detailing packages. The packages range from very basic to more complex (and costly) options. An average sedan-sized car will cost you $50 to get a basic detailing service. A basic package will cost you around $70 if you own a bigger car, such as a full-size SUV. It does vary from place to place, but it’s very normal for even a detailer’s basic package to be three or four times more expensive than the average car wash. At the high end, a detailing package can get into the hundreds of dollars.

Detailers provide a more thorough and comprehensive cleaning service than regular car washing attendants. Detailers divide the vehicle into sections, and pay close attention to each one to ensure that it is cleaned according to its specific shape. Many of their packages include waxing and protection for paint. On the car’s interior, detailer vacuum, remove dust, remove stains, remove odors and more. 

One of the biggest differences between the work of a detailer compared to that of a regular car wash is the “restorative” factor. Car washing cleans the car, while a detailing job restores it to when it was new.

How much should you tip a car detailing professional?

It’s customary to tip anywhere from 10-20 % of the package value to a detailer, but you should only do it when they have done a genuinely good job.

The more specialized nature of the car detailers’ work generally warrants a more generous tip. An average car washer will spend 30 minutes cleaning your vehicle. Depending on the amount of work required and your package, a detailer could take between 2-5 hours to clean up your car.

Detailers aren’t like servers in a restaurant who maintain a good attitude and earn tips even when the food is lousy. Servers don’t cook the food, after all, and you can still tip them for good service. However, car detailing is more expensive and requires more skill. Before you tip, it is reasonable to know that the job will be completed well.

Car Detailer or Car Wash? What is your wish?

To conclude today’s blog, we’ll offer you some additional advice on whether it’s better to hire a detailer or use a regular car wash. Both options have obvious benefits and drawbacks. Although the cost of detailing is lower than car washing, it is clear that detailers are more expensive. Ultimately, you should reflect on what your requirements are. Below we’ll give you some examples to show you what we mean:

1. You just need the car cleaning so it doesn’t look so filthy

If this sounds like what you want, then you’re fine going to a regular car wash, perhaps once a week or once every other week depending on where you live and drive, and how dirty your car gets on a regular basis. Consider allowing your children to wash the car for a weekend if you have them. It’s a good way to teach responsibility, and gives them something useful to do.

2. Your car hasn’t been cleaned in a very long time and you might want to sell it soon

A detailing is necessary at this time. When there has been a long-term lack of cleaning, dirt gets built up in places where a regular car wash just won’t get to it effectively. A detailer's keen eye and expertise will make sure that the vehicle is cleaned from every corner to every shadow. In addition, the restorative effect of a car detailing will help add a “wow factor” when it comes to selling the car. How the car looks can have a big impact on how willing a buyer is to pay the asking price.

You should think about which type of car-cleaning suits you best. Remember to tip for good work. It doesn’t have to be much, but at least a token to show your appreciation would go down very well. 

¡Más Contenido!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Go up