By Mark Maggiore

Sales Manager

14 March 2023

Car washing bays are vital to maintaining the appearance and functionality of cars across Australia. However, with varying regulations from state to state, it can be challenging to know the specific requirements for car washing bays in each region. Whether you're a car owner looking to wash your own vehicle or a business owner planning to install a car washing bay, it's essential to understand the guidelines and standards set by regulatory bodies.

In this blog, the expert team at Cleanawater will explore the car washing bay requirements in Australia, providing valuable insights into the essential components needed to ensure a safe and effective car washing experience.

What is a Wash Bay?

A wash bay is a designated area, typically enclosed, where vehicles or equipment can be cleaned. Wash bays are commonly used in mining, transportation, agriculture, and construction industries, where equipment and vehicles often become soiled with dirt, oil, and other contaminants during their use. 

Wash bays facilitate the cleaning process while ensuring that the wastewater generated during washing is captured and adequately treated before being discharged into the environment. They typically feature specialised equipment such as high-pressure washers, brushes, and water recycling systems to ensure efficient cleaning while minimising water consumption and protecting the environment. 

Car Wash Bay Requirements - What You Should Know 

Car wash bay requirements in Australia vary depending on the state or territory in which they are located. However, some general guidelines apply across the country. Here are some of the essential Australian standard car wash bay requirements:

Drainage and Wastewater 

Car wash bays must have proper drainage systems to ensure wastewater generated during the washing process is collected and disposed of correctly. This includes installing oil and water separators to remove oil and other harmful contaminants from wastewater before entering the sewerage system. Adhering to trade waste requirements is standard for all car wash bays across Australia.  

Water Supply

Car washing bay requirements in Australia include having an adequate supply of water to facilitate the washing process. This could involve securing a connection to a main water supply or using recycled water. It’s best to check with your relevant water authority for local standards. 

Environmental Protection 

Depending on the state you live in, environmental protection may be a car washing requirement you have to consider. For instance, car wash bays must comply with environmental protection regulations, including putting measures in place to prevent pollution, adhere to a trade waste agreement and dispose of waste materials correctly. 

Site Planning and Construction 

The construction of a car wash bay must comply with the relevant codes and standards. This includes whether you need roofed or unroofed wash bays, the wash bay design, and considerations for accessibility, safety, and structural integrity.   

It's essential to note that these requirements may vary depending on the specific location and circumstances of the wash bay project. It's crucial to consult with local regulatory bodies and seek professional advice to ensure compliance with all car wash bay requirements. For more information, read our complete guide on wash bays. 

Do These Requirements Only Apply to Car Wash Bays?

It’s important to note that these requirements apply to all wash bays, regardless of the vehicle it serves. Cleanawater specialises in the following and can help you understand washing bay requirements for your local area: 

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Car Washing Bay Size Requirements According to Australian Standards 

According to Australian Standards, there are no specific requirements for the size of a car washing bay. However, the following are some general guidelines that can help determine the appropriate size for a car washing bay:

  • Length - the length of a car washing bay should be at least 6 meters to accommodate most vehicles. Larger bays may be required for longer vehicles such as buses or trucks.

  • Width - the width of a car washing bay should be at least 3 meters to allow for ample space for the vehicle, wash pad, and other equipment. A wider bay may be required for larger vehicles.

  • Height - the height of a car washing bay should be at least 3 meters to allow for adequate clearance for vehicles of different sizes.

  • Maneuvering space - there should be enough space around the car washing bay for vehicles to maneuver in and out of the bay safely. A minimum of 1.5 meters of space should be provided on either side of the bay.

It is important to note that these are general guidelines and the size of a car washing bay and physical wash bay may vary depending on the site’s specific requirements, the type of vehicles being washed, and the equipment being used. It is recommended to consult with professionals, such as the team at Cleanawater, to determine the appropriate size for your next car washing bay project.

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Leave the Car Wash Bay Requirements to the Professionals

Whether installing portable wash bays, thinking about discharge trade waste solutions, implementing oil water separators or designing a new wash-down area, Cleanawater has the job covered. With our specialist equipment and industry knowledge, we can provide wash bay solutions that are engineered for efficient performance. 

Mark Maggiore

Sales Manager

Learn about the latest car washing bay requirements in Australia. Cleanawater engineers wash bays that meet local guidelines and protect the environment.

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