Starting a Carwash and Auto Detailing Business

If you are looking for a small yet profitable business with little capital, then a carwash and auto detailing business is one of your best options. With more and more cars filling the roads, there is a rapidly growing demand for carwash and auto detailing services.
Even if the venture looks quite simple, there is much to know before you start investing. Like all businesses, you must first learn how to operate it properly to avoid the mistakes newcomers commit. Here are some tips:
Obtain the capital needed. You need to consider the kinds of services you plan to offer when you start and how many cars you intend to serve. Among the largest expenses will be your capital. This is the amount needed to start the business, like rental deposit, renovation and equipment purchases. You must also allot cash for operating expenses—the day-to-day or monthly expenses like rent (this is different from the rental deposit), payroll, utilities and rentals. The total amount for a very small carwash in a low-rent location would be around P250,000.
Find the best location for your car wash. Make sure it is visible to a large number of your target market. Taking the time to count the number of potential customers is far better than relying on guesswork. Check if there is a strong and adequate supply of water. Your site should have an area of at least 100 square meters.
Register your business. To be able to legally operate, you must secure first a business name. Because most names are already taken, you usually would have to try several times. It is easier to do this on the Internet. Once done, go to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) if you are a sole proprietor, or the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) if you want to be a partnership or corporation. After this, obtain a barangay clearance and secure a business permit from City Hall or municipal office. You then get a certificate of registration and authority to print receipt (ATP) from the Bureau of Internal Revenue RDO.
Purchase the necessary equipment and supplies. Some of the basic equipment you must have is a power washer, repair tools and wet-dry vacuum cleaner. For supplies, you must stock up on car shampoo, chamois and microfiber towels (to avoid scratches) and tire black, among other items. Screen potential hires well. Besides the usual NBI, Police and Barangay Clearance, you must also make sure of the background of the people you are going to hire. Drug tests and medical clearance are highly recommended to avoid problems later on.
Train employees on the proper procedures. Develop a comprehensive checklist of tasks to do, along with the correct step by step procedures. You must maintain a set of standards in order to provide a consistently satisfying experience for your customer, such that they keep coming back.
To learn more about this business, BusinessCoach, Inc., a leading business seminar provider, conducts a seminar entitled, “How to Start a Carwash and Auto Detailing Business.” Contact (02) 727-5628, (02) 727-8860, (0915) 205-0133 or visit for details.

Click here to view details of the seminar: How to Start and Operate a Carwash and Auto Detailing Business »

*Originally published by the Manila Bulletin. C-4, Sunday, February 16, 2014. Written by Ruben Anlacan, Jr. (President, BusinessCoach, Inc.) All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or copied without express written permission of the copyright holders.