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Fleet Washing Prices and Services Explained

Fleet washing

Fleet washing ranges to anything from heavy equipment cleaning, such as semi-trucks and excavators, all the way to cleaning a dealership’s cars that are for sale. Regardless of what your business uses for its operations, every business entity with vehicles of any kind can benefit from fleet cleaning services. Fleet washing is simply an umbrella term for cleaning vehicles, and the depth of service can be anywhere from a simple water-only pressure washing to a full-service detailing job.

Fleet Washing Prices

A fleet cleaning operation will price either by the type of vehicle they are cleaning or by the hour. There are benefits to both pricing models and can be applied selectively depending on what type of cleaning is being done. Per vehicle, fleet washing can be anywhere from $10-$200 per vehicle, and even more if intense detailing is required such as in a polishing and buffering of semi-trailers or farm equipment.

By the Vehicle

Price based on vehicle, let us say, can be useful when doing high volume, low intensity cleaning, such as cleaning a dealership’s fleet for sale or a pest control company’s trucks and vans. Basically, doing many vehicles with little work involved is great to price this way. It keeps the buyer in an understanding state with the fleet washing company that all vehicles will be cleaned to a certain expectation at a certain price. This ensures that the company doing the cleaning will absolutely complete the job 100%. By the vehicle is a great pricing structure for a business whose fleet is already in maintenance condition with no intensive, heavy-duty work.

By the Hour

Hourly rate pricing has its own benefits and downsides when compared to by the vehicle pricing. In a scenario where you have some heavily soiled construction equipment, fleet cleaning companies cannot accurately predict how long it will take to meet a customer’s satisfaction, and if pricing per vehicle, they may price the vehicle higher than what the customer intended to pay out of fear of taking way too long on a project. Now both parties go their own ways without accomplishing anything.

But let’s say that the fleet cleaning company states that they charge $200 an hour, and the customer wants to pay $600 maximum for cleaning their four pieces of heavy machinery, the cleaners can provide as much cleaning capability to each of the machines for their hourly rate. This means that the customer will receive a satisfactory cleaning of their equipment and the cleaners get another customer at the rate they want.

Choosing how to price, by the hour or by the vehicle, is up to each unique scenario between cleaner and customer. Both should discuss each option and how it would benefit them, move forward with a decision, and then adjust the pricing model as time goes on. Fleet cleaning is a routine maintenance service that requires cooperation and communication from both parties.

Fleet Cleaning Services

There are many levels of service involved in fleet cleaning – basic or highly detailed, either end of the spectrum can be satisfactory for both parties.

Water-Only Pressure Washing

By this we mean spraying water and water only. For vehicles with caked on dirt (construction), this service can be a major aesthetic and liability improvement. What if an excavator tracked dirt all over someone’s freshly poured asphalt parking lot? Not only does the construction company have a dirty machine needing cleaned, but now they must fork hundreds, maybe even thousands, of dollars over to a professional cleaning company that knows how to soft wash asphalt. Having a fleet cleaner do a few passes over each machine with their pressure washer once the job is done is an easy way to save time and money.

Pressure Washing with Chemicals

Using detergents can make all the difference when washing vehicles. Just like you use soap, tire shine, and window cleaner to wash your car’s surfaces effectively, you should use chemicals to wash heavy machinery the proper way. Most chemicals used when cleaning semi-trucks, trash trucks, and cement mixers are corrosive or caustic, so it is best to leave it to professionals who know where to get the chemicals and how to apply them at the right ratios.

The most common type of fleet cleaning is called a two-step, where you apply an acidic cleaner, such as phosphoric acid or hydrochloric acid, and quickly follow up with a basic chemical such as sodium hydroxide. This combination of both chemicals neutralizes the acid and the base to yield water and organic debris, while also remove all sorts of contaminants such as road grime, grease, and dirt from the truck.

Spot-Free Rinsing

This service is oriented toward fleets without much wear and tear, such as a dealership’s showroom. Using de-ionized water (AKA distilled water), fleet cleaners can remove surface level dirt and pollen from stagnant vehicles sitting out in the sun. No water spots or streaks are left on the car windows or body paint as there are no minerals in the water. This can be a great service during and at the end of pollen season when many people are buying new vehicles during the spring.

Auto Detailing

Detailing is not often associated with pressure washing, but every professional auto detailer does have a pressure washer on-hand. Detailing can mean interior, exterior, under the hood, or all the above. As it is up to the customer to disclose what services they are wanting, as auto detailing can become a highly customizable service. Some unique examples are below:

  • Road salt removal on the underbody of a businesses’ fleet during winter
  • Chrome wheel polish on semi-trailers
  • Interior detailing on company vans
  • Scratch correction on work trucks


Fleet washing is a must-have service for businesses using vehicles in their day-to-day operation. Clearing vehicles of dirt, greases, and oils helps mitigate slips and falls as you climb in and out of the vehicles, keeps them looking like new, and helps prevent any degradation and damage to the vehicle’s parts.

If you are in need a of a custom fleet cleaning solution or have questions on how to get started in fleet washing, give our team at Mount Pleasant Pressure Washing a call to get professional advice with expert results. Our weekly and monthly fleet cleaning schedule stays tight, but we are always happy to consider adding more clientele where our schedule sees fit. From truck washes to heavy machinery cleaning, we deliver exceptional results built on years of experience and study of the craft. We would be thrilled to hear from you!

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