Ever since I was a child, I was always fascinated with cars and could distinguish makes and models by just seeing them drive by our house in Chicago. About a month after my 18th birthday, I entered the highline and exotic car business. I began working in dealerships as a salesman and eventually worked my way up to a used car manager by the age of 21. When I was 22 years old, I decided it was time for a change and I left the 72 hour work weeks at the dealerships to begin working as a wholesale buyer for two very well known chains of auto dealers (one with 3 locations in the Chicagoland area and one with 10 nationwide dealerships). This position required me to travel all over the country to purchase vehicles from dealer auctions on a weekly basis. I would fly from Chicago to Atlanta, fly from Atlanta to Orlando, drive to West Palm Beach, fly from West Palm Beach to Manheim Pennsylvania and once a month I would fly from Chicago to Riverside, California and drive from there to Las Vegas for the dealer auction here in town. As you can imagine, for a guy in his early 20s, I had a pretty cool job. I got paid great money to buy 30-40 cars a week for other dealers and I always had the nicest, most luxurious and exotic cars to drive around in. Right after I turned 23 years old, I decided I was ready to get my own wholesale dealer's license and begin utilizing the connections I had made over the last few years. In 2006, I incorporated NV Auto Exchange (and no, not NV for Nevada but for my initials. Some coincidence, huh?).
So I continued to travel. Except now I was buying vehicles to sell to dealers with my own money at my own risk. I continued to go to Manheim, West Palm Beach, Atlanta, Riverside and Las Vegas on a monthly basis just like before. I flew to all of them except the drive from Riverside to Las Vegas was only a couple of hours so I would drive to Las Vegas and later fly back to Chicago. Since the auction in Riverside was, and still is one of the best dealer auctions for the highline and exotic car market, I always ended up with cars ranging from Mercedes and BMWs, to Porsches, Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Bentleys, Rolls Royce, an occasional Spyker, etc. Therefore, I always drove the best one I purchased that day from California to Nevada.
After taking the drive every 4-6 weeks on a regular basis, I realized that there wasn't a car wash in Las Vegas where I felt that my cars would be washed to my high standards safely or even properly for that matter. It got under my skin that here I am in a $250k vehicle that was dusty, covered in bugs and the wheels were covered in brake dust. What's the purpose of having these beautiful cars if they were filthy?
As much as I loved and still love Chicago as a whole, I always felt as though Las Vegas was my second home because of the time I spent here. I always joked about moving here one day after a trip here with friends for my 21st birthday. Finally about 2 years ago, after spending my entire life in freezing Chicago winters and the most humid Chicago summers, I decided enough was enough. I realized I wasn't getting any younger, Las Vegas was still in need of a REAL hand car wash, and decided that I was going to be the one to give it to them.
I began searching for buildings where I can put the entire operation indoors. After about a year of going back and forth from Chicago to Las Vegas and looking at countless locations and buildings, I found this one. It was proportioned perfectly. It had just enough room for a waiting area, just enough warehouse space to wash, dry and detail vehicles, yet it still had room for me to keep vehicles for NV Auto Exchange prior to them being shipped out to dealers across the country. We immediately packed our stuff and moved to Las Vegas.
Literally the day after we arrived, I began the transformation of turning this building into what it has become. And here you have it; a completely indoor, strictly by hand, 7,000 square foot facility that was created for people like myself. For people who say that a good car wash doesn't exist in Las Vegas, or for people who always feel they have to wash their vehicle by themselves because they don't trust any car wash with their vehicle, or for people who go to car washes and know that once they leave, they will have to go home to finish the car wash in their driveway that they just paid good money for. I know the feeling and I don't blame you one bit. I was that guy since I got my driver's license and bought my first car. If your car is $1,500 or $1.5 million, it's still your car and you paid for it with your money. Therefore, you deserve a place that will treat it with the same care and respect as you do. And as of February 3, 2014, you now have a place that does just that! I've personally trained every single employee and I can't tell you what a great feeling it is to watch them wash my personal vehicles and not have to worry or double check it when they're done.
Let me explain a little about our facility and how our process works because trust me, since I was "that guy", I've thought of everything. When you first come looking for us, you may drive right past us. Not because we are small or because you didn't see our signs or because our physical location is hidden, but because you've learned over the years to look for a tent or something of that sort with a bunch of guys standing around with towels in their hands with window cleaner bottles hanging from their pockets and that's not us. When you first pull into our parking lot, you will stop between the two stop signs where you will be greeted by myself, or one of our very friendly employees. You will be asked which service you would like, each will be explained to you if need be, you will then exit the vehicle and go make yourself at home in our beautiful waiting area. Prior to breaking down our process for you, I will begin by telling you that we DO NOT recycle our water. Recycling water is for tunnel or brush washes that do high volume to keep their water bill down. It has nothing to do with saving water or using too much. Our water is treated through 3 steps prior to reentering Clark County's system. Clark County inspectors approved the drains we installed, our filtration system and interceptor with flying colors. If anything, we overdid it just to insure we did our part in keeping the water in Las Vegas as clean as possible. Besides, would you not shower for a week or two, take a bath and then use the dirty water in your bathtub to give your baby a bath right after? I don't think so.
the waiting area
- Being that we are completely indoors, you will enter and wait in a heated/air conditioned facility. No more waiting in the heat, cold or wind.
- Almost the entire wall separating the washing/drying area from the waiting area is made of glass. You can watch the vehicle and our process from beginning to end.
- We have a very clean, comfortable, contemporary themed and customer oriented waiting area boasting black tile floors with white grout, white ceiling tile with black grid, black leather couches, black and white walls, black granite countertops, a 50" LED television, reading material, floor to ceiling glass water feature, background music at low volume, free Wi-Fi, free coffee, free water, 3 customer workstations which include black leather stools, 3 outlets and 2 USB outlets per stool so you can get some work done while you wait, free phone/tablet charger to use while you wait and miscellaneous Chicago nostalgia throughout.
- Our gratuity box for employees is located on the wall where you pay for your services. All employees equally split the gratuities at the end of every shift. This ensures that all employees put in the same amount of effort and prevents one employee from trying to take on too much or too little work.
- We accept cash, Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express.
- Upon entering your vehicle, we will place a paper floor mat in your vehicle to ensure we do not drag any water, soap, dirt, etc. into your vehicle.
- It will then be pulled into our building to our wash area.
- If you are getting anything but an exterior wash, another one of our employees will enter the vehicle to begin cleaning the dashboard, door panels, center console, cup holders, etc. (we do not just dust off the interior... we actually clean it).
- Our employees will always wear gloves and have been instructed to only wear sweat/athletic pants and shirts with empty pockets, no buttons, no zippers, no belts, no rings, no watches, no bracelets, etc. to prevent any damage to any vehicles.
- The bottom half of your vehicle and wheels will be rinsed off first since this is where most of the dirt and debris accumulates. Starting from the top down will only cause the dirt and debris you are rinsing to stick to the dirt and debris at the bottom of the vehicle.
- Every single drop of water that touches your vehicle from beginning to end is potassium chloride softened and is around 90 degrees in temperature. Not too hot and not too cold.
- Once your vehicle is rinsed off, we bring out the one and only foam cannon in all of Las Vegas. This produces the perfect mixture of soap and water to create thick foam and ensures good coverage on the entire vehicle. That way you don't end up with too much here or not enough there. This item was designed by myself and perfected by our equipment installers (who also wash their fleet of Sprinter vans here might I add).
- Our employees then begin the washing process. We use separate microfiber for the painted surfaces of the vehicle and separate microfiber for the wheels, painted calipers, colored shock absorbers and exposed chrome/aluminum exhaust systems. And if we can get our hand inside your wheels, we will clean it all the way through. There is no reason for just the exposed part of your wheel to be clean yet when you look inside, it's still dirty. We will NEVER spray any cleaners on your wheels and will NEVER put a brush on them or any part of your vehicle to clean anything unless you have a pickup truck with a bedliner installed. We will use our soft bristle brush only to clean beds with bedliners in place. Pickup truck beds are always cleaned thoroughly. And no, we do not charge extra for this like everyone else. Other than that, only microfiber will touch your vehicle from beginning to end.
- Your wiper blades will be picked up just enough for the microfiber wash mitt to clean underneath them. The employee will have his/her hand between your hood and wiper blade to prevent scratching your hood.
- Once the vehicle is completely covered in soap, we begin the rinsing process again using only potassium chloride softened, temperature controlled water. Usually this is done using low pressure rinsing. High pressure on certain vehicles will only push the soap further into cracks and panels causing it to "hide" making it difficult to rinse all the soap off.
- Once completely rinsed, the floor near your driver's side door will be swept free of water allowing us to reenter your vehicle without dragging water into it and it will then be pulled around into one of our drying stations.
- The exterior of your vehicle will first be dried using a microfiber chamois to remove the majority of the water from the vehicle.
- We then use rubber tipped air hoses and microfiber towels to begin getting excess water from the mirrors, make/model badging, grill, trim, headlights, taillights, wiper blades and any other places where water likes to hide. These microfiber towels are made specifically for the paint on a vehicle. These are not the thinner ones used for cleaning windows.
- We also use rubber tipped air hoses to remove water from wheels, calipers, aluminum/chrome exhaust tips and to completely dry the outer portion of your tires. The wheels are then wiped all the way through using a different microfiber to clean anything we may have missed.
- Tire dressing is applied in steps using special applicators. It is not piled on to your tire so the second you drive away, it slings all over the side of your freshly washed vehicle. This is why getting the tire completely dry first is very important. Once the dressing and water collide, it is a recipe for disaster to the side of your vehicle. Please keep in mind that tire dressing is always free and is an option. We are not here to nickel and dime you in an attempt to get as much money from you as possible in one visit and hope you come back. We are here to provide you with a service that you paid for and ensure your 100% satisfaction to keep you coming back.
- With any wash service that we provide, doorjambs and trunk jambs are always wiped down. No more opening your doors to see dirt, dust and water on your door, doorsills, A pillar, B Pillar, C Pillar or trunk lid.
- Our vacuum hoses are padded... literally! Although vacuum hoses usually won't scratch your doorsill or door edge, they sometimes leave scuffmarks. And with our padded vacuum hoses, we have completely eliminated any chance of even a scuffmark.
- Your trunk will always be vacuumed if possible unless you instruct us not to do so. One employee will vacuum while the other holds the vacuum hose up so even the padded vacuum hose won't touch the vehicle just in case.
- Our employees have been instructed never to move any personal belongings. If it is a bottle of water, a couple papers, or something small, we may carefully move it to clean the area. But if it is a briefcase, purse, bag, luggage, etc., we will only clean around it. Please note that we will never open center consoles or glove compartments. We will remove pet hair from your mats and carpets, will move every seat in the vehicle forwards and backwards to vacuum underneath and around them, but we will never move your driver's seat. We will vacuum as much as possible around the driver's seat but we don't want you to get back into your vehicle and have to try to get your seat back to where it was when you brought it here.
- The interior of your vehicle is cleaned using a different microfiber and horsehair brushes for your air vents. Any scuff marks, makeup or any other visible spots that can be quickly removed from your dashboard, door panels, kick plates, door sills, steering wheel/column, consoles, shifter, gauges, etc. will be removed. We won't just dry wipe over them. As far as putting dressing on your dashboard or door panels, we don't do that here. What people don't understand is that dashboards, door panels, consoles, etc. are made porous. They are meant to expand and contract according to weather conditions. Therefore, once you apply any type of dressing to these items to make them shine, you are closing up the pores. Especially in Las Vegas where temperatures reach well over 100 degrees, the sun will then heat the dressing and basically cook anything where this dressing was applied. Then over time, when your dashboard attempts to expand or contract, it cannot. And once it tries to expand a few more times, it eventually cracks. The same goes for dressing any plastic exterior molding like bumper parts, mirrors or any other exterior black trim you like to make shiny. Except it doesn't usually crack. It discolors and turns gray. There's a reason why the same companies who make items to make this stuff shiny make items to then repair the damage it caused.
- Windows are cleaned using a different microfiber. We will always clean all windows, rearview mirror, side view mirrors, etc. very thoroughly. Even if you get an exterior wash, we will clean your side view mirrors and exterior windows correctly. Your windshield and rear window will always be cleaned all the way to the edges and not just as far as we can get our hand. We have the tools and the know how to get your window as clean as it should be. And while one employee is inside the vehicle cleaning the windshield, another will be outside of the vehicle looking at it from different angles pointing to streaks or missed spots to the employee inside the vehicle to make sure we get them all.
- With any full service wash or higher, we include air freshener at no charge to you. Unlike most places, we do not use spray type air fresheners. Spray type air fresheners contain dyes. New car is blue, cherry is red, vanilla is yellow, and so on. Therefore, we will not use these products in our facility. We use dry wafers. One will be placed under both front floor mats if you choose to include air freshener.
- If you choose to have your floor mats shampooed, we use only horsehair brushes. These are expensive but do prevent damaging your mats. Most places use the hard bristle brushes that do clean your mats, but the agitation also damages the fibers. We won't ruin your mats just to get them clean.
- Once we feel your exterior and interior is as clean as we can get it for the selected service, our employee will then put the paper floor mat back in your vehicle and move it up a foot or two. We can then apply tire dressing to the part of the tire that was touching the ground upon the initial application and wipe any parts of the wheels and calipers that may have been concealed behind a spoke or other part of the wheel.
- If you have not directed us to hand wax your vehicle, it will then be pulled outside with at least two employees double checking every square inch of the vehicle. We check windows for streaks, wheels for dirt, tires to make sure there isn't too much or too little dressing, watermarks, etc. And the best part is that we encourage nitpicking. Please do not "feel bad" pointing to something you notice that we may have missed. It happens, we're human. But again, we are here to provide you with a service that you paid for and want nothing more than to keep you as a happy, returning customer. At the same time, please keep in mind that it is humanly impossible to remove every drop of water from every crack and crevasse of your vehicle after a wash. And although we will remove 99% more than any other car wash in Las Vegas by wiping doorjambs, trunk lids, trunk jambs, doorsills, blowing the mirrors with air for quite a while, we cannot remove it all. It just isn't possible.
- Once completed, you can then reenter your vehicle where our employee will close your door for you with microfiber in hand to avoid leaving fingerprints on your freshly cleaned car.
- If you have chosen to have your vehicle hand waxed or clayed, it will be pulled into our paint booth. No, we do not paint cars. But the lighting in a paint booth is second to none. This ensures a cool, very bright place for us to do the clay treatment and/or apply wax, let dry and remove the wax in the most efficient and best way possible. I can promise no one in Las Vegas uses a paint booth just for waxing cars.
Now that I've explained ALMOST everything, I don't believe anyone can ever tell us we are “just a car wash”. Even if you just want to stop in and take a look at our facility, I will be glad to give you a personal tour. We are here to serve everyone including those who just don't have the time to do it themselves and those of us who had the time but didn't think there would ever come a day when there was going to be a place where you felt your vehicle was being pampered and taken care of the same way as if you were washing it yourself at home. I might just be the pickiest person when it comes to handling my vehicles and I created this place with those in mind. My many years in the highline and exotic vehicle business ensure that your vehicle is in good hands. And the best part about all of this you ask? We are open 7 days a week (yes, even on Sundays) from 7 am to 7 pm and our prices are the same as every other “hand” car wash in Las Vegas…if not cheaper! So to those of you with your custom vehicles, low clearance vehicles, oversized wheel vehicles, rear engine vehicles, mid engine vehicles, F1 transmission vehicles, E-Gear vehicles or just your regular everyday vehicles, pull your vehicle up to our stop signs in the lot, take a deep breath, go relax in our waiting area, and enjoy the fact that you finally found the one and only place in Las Vegas where you never have to worry about a thing again! Welcome to Windy City Wash and Wax…the only REAL hand car wash in Las Vegas!