Meet the future of vacuuming

The futuristic look of the ACE vacuum cleaner ACE

It looks like something straight out of a science fiction movie but it’s a vacuum cleaner. Meet the future of vacuum plazas, recently presented by Dutch company ACE Carwash Systems. After two years of development in cooperation with Formula Air and after several prototypes, “the underdog in the innovation battle” is on the up.

ACE already installed the first vacuum cleaners in a number of car washes throughout the Netherlands and is convinced many more will follow. On their website, ACE-manager Ruby Kamerbeek explains when and why they took up the challenge. “The vacuum area has remained untouched for a long time. There was the standard way with a pipe tube, to which all the vacuums were connected. That one vacuum machine is constantly bellowing, further down the square there’s another tire pump somewhere, and on yet another walk the wipes dispenser. Two years ago we started thinking about how things could be done differently and, above all, better.”

All options in one column

Each spot now has its own column, which can be customized to the needs of the car wash. The units can be supplied in any RAL color and offer an all-in-one solution, incorporating all the options found on a current vacuum cleaner plaza into one column. A great improvement for customers. They have everything in one place, right next to their car.”

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The ACE vacuum cleaner is available in all RAL colors.

According to ACE, there are also benefits for car wash operators. “Normally we would get individual requests for the vacuum area. Then it would cost you three thousand euros each time for a wipes dispenser, three thousand euros for a tire pump and so on. Now you can buy units and choose what you want to put in them. Should you need a tire pump, you can put it in the column. But just as easily leave it out, or mount it in later. You can always keep upgrading and customizing the column.”

Profit in energy savings

Vacuuming plaza’s have never been big money makers, ACE says. The service is usually offered for free, with or without a time limit on the vacuuming itself.
Still, there is profit to be made from the new “future proof” columns, according to the company. For example, each column is controlled by three motors that operate in stages. When a car approaches a column, a sensor detects it. As soon as the driver presses a button, the motor starts working. Kamerbeek: “So when all the pillars are empty, all the valves close and no motor is left running. That makes for enormous energy savings, in times where energy is vacuuming your bank account. It’s also a huge win in terms of sustainability.”

Wipes dispenser

All the bollards include a system for paying contactless with debit cards or phones. According to Kamerbeek, the combination of close and easy payment creates a lower threshold for buying, for example, wipes or perfumes from the pillar. “This makes it easier for consumers to make these expenditures.

Above that, if you place two pillars at a gas station, you have the option to let the customer pay for its use. Because the technology is there, all options are possible.”

Attached to each unit are two vacuum hoses, left and right, which are controlled separately and must be activated with a push button. “That way the customer doesn’t have to cross the roof with a hose. You only use the side you actually vacuum with, and the motor only turns on when the customer pushes the button.”

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The dispenser can easily be adjusted

Clear view

Each pillar has its own collection bin for the suction waste, instead of one central bin. That bin does not have to be emptied once a day, but “only once every two weeks. The column can also be used in the evening. Each unit has LED lighting at a 45-degree angle so that the inside of the car is clearly visible during cleaning.

The pipes are in a concrete container and the units themselves are aluminum and low maintenance. The motors can be monitored via the touch screen display on the control box. “On this, everything can be viewed and controlled. Also, ACE can easily watch if there is a malfunction, for example,” Kamerbeek adds. “We then automatically receive a notification in the office. This allows us to remotely fix or at least signal almost everything.”

ACE  Vacuum Cleaner System

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Author: Rene Passet

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