WashTec every time
Andreas Grüne today manages Grüne Mineralöle GmbH & Co. KG in the third generation confidently, determined and with a clear vision into the future. A future that secures the energy supply for industry, private households and mobility in and around the Sauerland town of Arnsberg in the Ruhr valley. A town that has grown up as a result of a number of districts merging and in which Grüne Mineralöle operates no fewer than nine petrol stations – card-operated petrol stations, also with self-service car wash facilities, petrol stations with a shop, CleanPark and gantry car washes, four of which are manned and five are automated petrol stations. "We are looking to position ourselves for the future", says Andreas Grüne. This is why he not only had all the petrol stations refitted to the uniform company label, but also modernised the shops for customers, making them more attractive to the eye, convenient for shopping and a pleasant place to stop. Shops brightly lit with LEDs in a modern and fresh look offer customers the items they require in a feel-good atmosphere. "We leased the small but fine petrol station in the district of Hüsten in autumn last year and converted the shop thanks to the fantastic commitment of all the trades involved as early as November. In doing so, we succeeded in nearly doubling the floor space", says Andreas Grüne describing the extremely successful shop refit ready for starting out into the future there. "The petrol station with its new modern look in the Grüne livery is pleasant to look at, really stands out, attracts motorists and entices them to stop. A real feast for the eyes. In the meantime word has really got around about our new petrol station", says the dedicated Grüne junior assessing the situation in a very good mood. All the sites in busy locations ensure good business for the petrol stations. Grüne Mineralöle, founded in 1954 by Bernhard Grüne as a coal trading company, has developed over the past 63 years into a reliable energy supplier in a town, which, "if I'm not mistaken, has more motorway accesses and exits than Dortmund." The first public charge point also emerged in this Eldorado close to the motorway. "This is where we plan to continue investing, since I would like to be there when customers roll up to recharge their electric vehicles."
FoamSensation to perfection
Customers can and should come right away whenever they want to wash and care for their vehicles. For Andreas Grüne, it was clear that this was only possible with washing technology that reliably delivers the best cleaning and care results and which brilliantly enhances the car wash with an integrated light show. For him, this meant investing today in up-to-date and innovative gantry car wash technology capable of delivering an excellent car wash in event style. The result of this investment in the future thus was to and had to be a top-class gantry car wash. The SoftCare² Pro in the Silverlight premium design from the manufacturer WashTec was precisely what Andreas Grüne had in mind. An extremely efficient gantry car wash illuminated with 20 LED strip lights, equipped with WashTec's new LightShow, which brilliantly highlights the different stages of the wash in the silver-grey gantry. A gantry which, with the eye-catching FoamSensation at the start of the wash, goes down particularly well, because the special lighting effects magnetically attract customers. It intensifies its effect as dusk falls and in the dark in any case, when the colour-changing LEDs illuminate the foam
wall from behind, creating an impressive effect. The LED strips in the StarTrack wheel guide rail intensify the lighting effects, combining to form an attractive show and make driving in and out of the wash bay designed in the form of head station safe for customers. A show which, apart from the washing experience, lives from WheelFlash, since it guarantees that the chemicals applied cover the wheel rims all over. The performance capability of the WheelJet wheel washer for large and small rims excels with its diagonal infeed. "The wheel wash is so good that even heavily soiled rims shine silver again", raves Andreas Grüne. Thanks to MultiFlex, the rear end is also thoroughly cleaned. The FlexStream roof dryer is capable of rotating once around its own axis, thus ensuring effective vehicle drying.
AUWA is top priority
These results are possible and are indeed achieved because the Managing Director made chemicals a top priority. "In all our facilities, we trust the effective products from AUWA, whose proven performance is seemingly unbeatable. The powerful but paintwork-preserving pre-wash is followed by the special WheelTecs rim cleaner and FoamTecs active foam in top form to remove insect debris, greases and oils and road grime. DryTecs® chemical drying aid is a must for excellent blower drying, the extremely intensively acting care wax RainTecs® dries, preserves and protects with gleaming results. The performance of the gantry car wash and chemicals in terms of the wash and care convinced Managing Director Grüne so much that "we now use the SoftCare2 Pro everywhere. The model in Arnsberg-Hüsten differs from the other three in that it "boasts the latest equipment features. It is simply fantastic, impresses customers with its exceptional wash, care and drying performance and looks just fab."
The "hey presto" offer
This is the outcome of a WashTec offer that was put together on the quick. I contacted the world market leader in vehicle washing WashTec and nobody else. As someone from the Sauerland region, I quickly knew what I wanted thanks to the precise idea regarding the technology and equipment I received from the WashTec sales rep Thorsten Kuschel. We met up, measured up and negotiated – in precisely this order, we soon came to an agreement." After that, Managing Director Grüne received the delivery commitment astonishingly quickly from the manufacturer, which had originally been planned for later. "I liked it and instantly agreed to it." It took just under five hours from the time the delivery truck rolled up at Holzener Weg 40 to the completion of the basic installation. Only the laying and connection of the pipes took longer. The WashTec technicians planned and implemented the dismantling and installation work such that the petrol station could continue operating undisturbed and without interruption, despite the fact that the area in front of the wash bay did not offer a tremendous amount of space.
Awesome response triggered
"I recorded the first wash on my mobile phone and shared it via social media, particularly on Facebook. Over 18,000 people watched my video over a single weekend. That was pretty awesome", says the Managing Director delightedly, who was thus able to stage a perfect launch. As a partner of Tanknetz Deutschland, Grüne petrol stations with their dark red T in
the Grüne logo ensure reliable flows of customers, who also of course should benefit the car wash. As a rule, "Grüne Energie" as a brand partner of Aral and Westfalen is committed both to traditional fuels and lubricants, industrial gases, LPG and natural gas as well as to renewable energies – the petrol stations constitute an important energy sales channel with extensive service offers, with a focus on automatic vehicle washing. With the SoftCare2 Pro Silverlight, Andreas Grüne, after 15 years of reliable service from the old WashTec gantry car wash, is now also ensuring continuous washing performance at the highest level in Hüsten.
Motivated, committed and interested, Andreas Grüne looks after the cleaning, care and maintenance of the equipment and bay. "An employee, who is assisted by a student, drives around to all the car washes during the week, checking they are clean and tidy, that the chemicals are topped up and the equipment is working. "If anything else crops up, we discuss matters on the telephone, make decisions and act accordingly. This works brilliantly." The basic cleaning also works very well, a task Andreas Grüne has now commissioned WashTec with. "The 'Saubermann', a WashTec subcontractor, who looks after the cleaning at a number of stations across Germany, performs the work reliably and to a very high standard. After a basic clean, the car wash remains clean for a surprisingly long time", says Andreas Grüne praising the man's meticulous work, who he commissions once a year with the cleaning job. "The result is fantastic. This, too, is in keeping with the excellent performance of Augsburg-based WashTec – delivering a truly exceptional and efficient combination of experience, quality results and service.
Text/ Images: Bernd Fiehöfer