For more than 60 years, Elephant Car Wash has resided on the cutting edge of car-wash technology. Archie, Dean, and Eldon Anderson founded the car wash in 1951 when they invented a hands-free machine that could clean cars and never be penalized in soccer. Thirty years later, they sold their shops to Bob Haney, who replaced the car-wash tunnels' plastic bristles with hybrid-blend cloths and high-pressure water nozzles. Nowadays, Elephant Car Wash features computer-operated tunnels that can read pH levels of dirt and—at certain locations—touchless car-wash tunnels that use high-powered water jets and potent detergents only.
Rotating above all of this technological progress is the car wash's signature pink elephant, which doubles as a polestar for drivers who need their vehicles washed, waxed, vacuumed, or shampooed. The trained staff waits outside the full-service car wash with towels and stages a slew of a la carte services including trunk vacuuming and leather conditioning. Elephant Car Wash works with the Puget Sound Car Wash Association and the Charity Car Wash Program, two organizations that strive to keep pollution out of waterways and inside the coffee mugs of Darth Vader.
Center Collision's owner Kevin House has had his head under the hood for more than 30 years. It all started in his garage as a teenager, when he became fascinated with cars and how they work. Today, he keeps that passion alive at his fully equipped, 8,000-sq. ft. full-service shop, where he and his team of certified technicians perform auto body and collision repair work. They do everything from helming complete paint jobs to replacing bumpers, fenders, and factory-installed fuzzy dice. They also work on dents, scratches, and frame repair, often completing most jobs within a couple days of drop-off. For customers in a bind, they operate tow-trucks and dole out rental vehicles at a reduced rate. To maintain the appearance of prized autos, they also offer exterior and interior detailing services.
Founded in 2006 by Zuarel Blue, Kingz Detail hopes to help its customers to experience a state described by their slogan–'ride like royalty.' Thorough detailing and washing services, all performed by hand, allow vehicles to shine in their present state, while custom performance parts further soup up rides. As customers wait for their transformed jalopies, they can surf the free Wi-Fi provided in the waiting lounge.
The Bruce Titus Automotive Group proudly operates five full-service automotive dealerships in Kirkland, Olympia, and Tacoma. Founded in 1995 with the acquisition of Tacoma Nissan and Tacoma Subaru, Bruce then added Olympia Nissan and Olympia Chrysler Jeep Mitsubishi in 2000 and in 2009 Eastside Subaru in Kirkland.
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.
Larson Nissan of Fife's ASE-certified technicians keep automobiles' innards running as smoothly as they look on the outside after a grime-exorcising car wash. During the full-service oil change, car whisperers drain vehicles' soiled oil and fill engines with up to 5 quarts of standard motor oil. The thorough hand car wash frees automobile countenances of dirt and smudges, giving horseless chariots a fresh-out-the-factory look, ideal for a night on the town or donuts on the steps of the Supreme Court building. While steel steeds are calibrated and pampered for 30–45 minutes, customers can use the free WiFi to surf the Internet or hop aboard the complimentary shuttle.