Happy Hippo All-Vehicle Wash is part of the Washman family of facilities that's cleaned nearly 14.5 million vehicles, its name a playful reference to its ability to accommodate oversized rides such as RVs and buses. Of course, smaller cars are welcome, too, and all vehicles are de-grimed using a combination of eco-friendly cleansers, computer-controlled sprays—instead of brushes—recycled, filtered water, and soft cloths. Happy Hippo's touchless dryers ensure a spot-free finish, and, much like a visit to the DMV in a dream, the entire process often takes only three minutes or less.
Since 1988, Auto Care Super Saver has been helping car owners save cash with maintenance punch cards redeemable at local auto shops throughout the course of a full year. These cards come loaded with all kinds of prepaid services, including at least three full-service oil changes with up to 5 quarts of oil, lube, and a new filter. Depending on the location, punch cards may also feature tire rotations, brake inspections, engine-light readings, air-conditioning performance tests, and other repairs and inspections essential to a car's well-being. Customers can transfer the punch card's benefits to any ride, ranging from station wagons to sports cars to feral merry-go-round mounts.
Though it originally sold only two things—audio products and wireless phones—Car Toys has gradually expanded its repertoire. Today, with 50 locations spread across four states, electronics-certified technicians install everything from Alpine in-dash navigation units to phone-integration systems that sync iPhones, Androids, and tin cans to car stereos. Meanwhile, in the garage, detailing technicians meticulously spruce up cars inside and out, using deionized water, paint-friendly shampoos, and high-quality wash mitts to protect against scratches, swirls, and water spots. The team also sweeps through interiors with vacuums, hot-water extractors, and ozone deodorizing treatment, which kills airborne bacteria and nasty smells in one fell swoop.
The folks at Midnight Motors believe that cars are different from one another and need to be treated as such. That's why the professional detailers stock more than a dozen specialty cleaners, dressings, and polishes, and carefully pick and choose from the potpourri of products based on each car's condition. Solutions such as Diamond Shine Plus paint sealant—which is formulated from 26 ingredients—bonds to the paint's surface and gives it long-lasting protection from fading and oxidation. On the interior, detailers can comb through carpets and upholstery with heated soil extractors, which infuse every fiber with shampoo and deodorizers. Custom detailing packages add weight to the company's automotive-individuality philosophy by allowing motorists to put together a series of treatments—including buffing, waxing, and engine detailing—that meet the specific needs and allergies of their own prized vehicle.
Owners Mike and Bob created Pro-Tek Automotive as a response to a proliferation of other garages' sloppy work, inferior components, and unfair prices. The two combine their more than 35 years of experience in building and tuning foreign and domestic autos, custom cars, and high-performance vehicles to perform a variety of automotive services, from factory-scheduled maintenance to prolonging the lives of cars by changing their oil, testing their emissions, and enforcing a strict bedtime. They also work to diagnose and fix issues with brakes, cooling and heating systems, electrical systems, and engines.
The duo and their team recognize the value of fortifying long-term relationships with customers. To do so, they keep each car owner's complete service history on file in their database, and send out reminders at the approach of scheduled maintenance dates.
Divine Auto Salon runs on eco-friendliness. Inside a facility equipped with recycling bins and high-efficiency lighting, green cleaning solutions cajole dirt into releasing its grip on cars. Each solution comes from exclusively corn-based containers that, unlike plastic containers or Volkswagen Beetles, will break down over time. And the company's unconditional love for water means less of it gets wasted during each wash.
Before getting the green light, Divine’s technicians undergo three weeks of extensive in-house training that includes classroom time and hands-on detailing experience. Then, and only then, are they ready to walk customers through each step of the detailing process, explaining goals and revealing where cars most like to be tickled. These technicians enjoy more than just listening to dirt scream in protest as it's wrenched from vehicles, though. They also find joy in outfitting front ends with custom 3M bras, repairing dents without using any paint, installing SunTek window film, and updating headlights with HID conversion kits.