The Professional Car Detailer

DetailXPerts is the world’s first eco-friendly steam car detailer franchise. Our unique patent-pending technology saves tons of water. Thousands of satisfied customers around the country and beyond its borders recognize its uniqueness, brilliant results and environmental friendliness.

Contact Us

Follow us

Edit Template


Truck Wash Business: What Are the Startup Costs?

Truck Wash Business: What Are the Startup Costs?

Setting up your truck wash business, just like any other business venture comes with a price tag. defines start up costs as a variety of different costs that a new business owner must incur in order to get the business established. What are these expenses? Below is a list of the most essential aspects of a truck wash business and why they need your funds the most.

List of Start Up Costs for your Truck Wash Business

Market Research

“Failure to do market research before you begin a business venture  is like driving a car from Texas to New York without a map or street signs,” says William Bill of Wealth Design Group LLC in Houston in an article by“You have to know which direction to travel and how fast to go. A good market research plan indicates where and who your customers are. It will also tell you when they are most likely and willing to purchase your goods or use your services.” There are various ways to conduct your market research. Yes, you can do it yourself, but of course,  a good market researcher can do it better.

Be aware, however, that these professionals can charge anywhere from $1000 to $2000. A little steep, maybe, but considering the accuracy and expertise they can bring to your business, that cost is more than justified. Without precise and targeted market research, you will not have a clear grasp of who your customers are, what they want and what they need. Consequently, you will not be able to tailor-fit your truck wash business to your market. A recipe doomed to fail, indeed.


The location and facilities of your truck wash business will require a huge chunk of your funds.. Once you have determined the perfect location for your business based on your market research, you have to decide whether you are going to build it, buy it or lease it. Same goes for your equipment. You can buy them or lease them. More than anything else, your truck wash business facility is where the bulk of your start-up cost is going to be spent on. A conservative estimate of how much it will cost you is $200,000 to $400,000. This is based on the size and location of the facility. It is good to invest on a quality facility to be able to provide quality service to your customers.


Whatever risk there may be for a business, there is an applicable insurance coverage. Purchasing general liability insurance is a must for all types of businesses to cover the risks that include bodily injury or property damage caused by direct or indirect actions of the insured. For your truck wash business, professional liability insurance should also be considered. This type of insurance, also known as errors and omissions insurance, protects your business against errors and negligence in provision of services to your customers.  As per the article of entitled The Average Cost of Insurance Coverage for a Sole Proprietor Business, General Liability Insurance could be as low as $500 to as high as $15,000 a year, while professional liability insurance can vary from $500 to $2,500 a year. Another type of insurance you may want to consider is commercial property insurance to cover your truck wash business facility. US Small Business  explains that this type of insurance protects you from loss and damage of company property, including your building, equipment, papers and money, due to events such as fire, flood and vandalism. It’d be wise to research on what would be good for your business. All these insurance coverage types may make a dent on your start-up capital but remember, it pays to have everything covered.

License and Permit

A rough estimate on the total cost of license and permit fees is $150 to $200. Required business licenses and permits vary from state to state. Some of the fees you may have to pay for are annual business license tax, business improvement tax, new license application fee and state fee. Specific to your truck wash business, there may be required water drainage, environmental and safety permits. Your estimated gross receipt is part of the calculation of the state fees you will have to pay.  Thus, it’s also important that your truck wash business plan has realistic financial assumptions.

Advertising and Promotion

Of course, you have to let people know that your truck wash business exists. You have to advertise! There are a myriad of choices for advertising out there. Depending on your start-up capital, you may choose to advertise on TV, magazines, newspaper, radio, billboards, etc. Don’t forget to utilize social media. The choices, really, are endless!

Not to mention that creative advertising and promotion can lure customers away from your competitors. This translates to additional customers for you! This is why  you have to include promotions and other marketing strategies in your start-up costs. The more innovative you are the better! Go explore the magic of car wash coupons. Maximize your social media accounts to spread your promotions faster. Once you have given them a taste of your service, customers will keep coming back. The price for this item varies but $2000 to $5000 is a pretty good estimate.


These are the essential costs that you have to plan for when starting your very own truck wash business. But these are just estimates. Let’s not forget Murphy’s Law: “Whatever can go wrong, will go wrong.” One way you can avoid failure is having an alternative plan for mishaps. Make sure that you have extra cash on hand on top of the start-up cost budget. Get your list ready because as they say, being prepared is half the victory!

Subscribe to the DetailXPerts blog now for more truck wash business start up tips.  You will benefit from our business expertise and extensive experience in the industry.


Relevant Posts