Perseverance pays off. Waterfront Auto Complex, like many other family-run businesses, struggled to maintain its footing after the closing of Homestead Steel Works. Their approach? After nearly four decades in service, they decided it was time for an upgrade. The team added a window-tint and detail shop to their automatic car wash and, after an uptick in business, a full-service Quaker State oil change. Waterfront now looks forward to many more years of servicing cars, SUVs, and, eventually, hovercrafts. “I really see an opportunity for growth in the Homestead area, not just for the waterfront, but all of the businesses and neighborhoods," says James A. Laux, president of the company’s corporate parent. "I'm not the only one making an investment in this community. As more people see the opportunity, the Mon Valley will do nothing but grow!”
For the staff at Double Take Auto Detailing, maintaining a vehicle's appearance is just as important as changing its oil or feeding the tiny horses that live in its engine. That's why techs can shine up cars with three levels of auto detailing—Silver, Gold, and Platinum. All packages begin with a hand wash for the vehicle's exterior and to clean away dust and grime. Once cars put away their bath toys, the staff can perform more heavy-duty aesthetic services, including tinting windows and repairing minor dings by using a process that maintains the original paint job.
Originally founded in 1959 by Kurt Ziebart as Ziebart International Corp., Ziebart has morphed from an auto-rust-prevention outfit into a full-service auto accessory and detail shop that has cropped up at some 400 locations in 30 countries. Performing everything from window tinting and professional detailing to electronics installation, Ziebart's experienced staff cares for cars with high-end products, including seasonal paint protectant and the company’s renowned rust inhibitors. To protect cars inside and out, Ziebart technicians also install accouterments such as alarm systems to thwart thieves and sunroofs to thwart unflattering film negatives from processing correctly (services may vary by location).
At LaserWash TouchFree CarWash, attendants don't soap up your car—instead, the cleans are administered by scrupulous touch-free automatic bays, open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Drivers simply drive inside and follow easy-to-read signs to receive their mechanized pressure washes, which include an underbody spray, a clear coat protectant, and biodegradable soaps and waxes.
The car shiners at Auto Bathouse leave no stone unturned with bumper-to-bumper cleaning services and top-brand oil changes. After a soft-cloth car wash, heated blow dryers and a climate-controlled towel-drying area keep teeth and grills from chattering. Select detailing services take more invasive measures such as engine degreasing, carpet steaming, and odor removal. Aesthetic upgrades spiff up auto bodies with paint sealants and chip repairs that fend off road debris, as well as window tints and carpet dye jobs that cover up graying fibers and keep aging autos feeling youthful. To keep clean cars from becoming mere driveway ornaments, techs keep pistons whirring with oil changes from brands such as Castrol and Pennzoil.
Buggies get burnished at 5th Avenue Professional Detailing using state-of-the-art equipment and a deft human touch. A hand wash and dry evicts large-scale gunk before 5th Avenue’s technicians turn their attention to the nitty-gritty. Bug and tar removal, an engine-bay detail, and a clay-bar treatment produce inner and outer beauty, while minor paint correction and a full-vehicle buff wipe away grass stains from cross-country tag games. A high-speed application of a 5th Avenue–exclusive aerospace wax is then followed by an application of clear-coat conditioner.