I know you've seen all of the PVC pipe car wash ideas and tutorials out there.
We were smitten with the idea and come Memorial Day (yes, I'm only just now sharing the tutorial!) we decided we needed to make one of our own because it is HOT here in Tennessee!
I'm definitely not trying to be snotty by calling this the BEST PVC pipe car wash.
But mine implements a new idea that makes it even MORE fun!
And I worked hard to put together a great tutorial so you can easily recreate it yourself!
Ready? Let's kick it off with our supply list.
For this PVC pip car wash you will need:
5 1/2"x10' pieces of PVC pipe
7 1/2" tee pieces
4 1/2" side elbow pieces
4 1/2" end caps
1 1/2" female PVC adapter (not shown)
PVC pipe cutter
PVC cement (optional)
And the key ingredient: misters!
p.s. All of our supplies came from Lowe's!
The misters are what make this car wash SO fun!
You WILL get
wet soaked in this car wash.
Depending on the type of mister you get will depend on additional costs you want to incur with the project.
We decided to go for it and bought three different types:
The half circle: the cheapest and definitely a lot of fun! 10 in a pack.
The quarter circle: Definitely going to get you wet! 12 in a pack.
The full circle spinner: Definitely my favorite with 360 degree water movement! ~5 in a pack(?).
You could definitely get by with just the half circle pack of misters.
It entirely up to you!
We ended up using about 15 misters total, incorporating all 3 types.
You will need 5 pieces of 1/2"x10' PVC pipe.
To cut I recommend:
Pipe #1: 2 4' lengths + 1 2' length
Pipe #2: 2 4' lengths + 1 2' length
Pipe #3: 1 4' length + 2 3' lengths
Pipe #4: 1 3' length + 3 2' lengths + 1 1' length
Pipe #5: 1 2' length + 3 1' lengths + 1 1/2" length
This is where the PVC pipe cutter comes in so handy. It cuts through PVC pipe like butter!
Definitely worth the $10 investment.
The above photo illustrates exactly how the pieces will fit together.
The final car wash is 3' (wide) x 5' (tall) x 4' (deep).
The above photo shows where to put all of your connecting pieces to hold the pipe together.
The caps under each of the four legs of the car wash will keep the pressure running throughout it.
We didn't have a female hose adapter so that isn't what is shown above. We used a male adapter we had on hand and made it work. But the hubs says a female adapter is what would be best.
If you haven't guessed it yet, this is where you will hook up your water hose.
We figured out the placement we wanted for our various misters, drilled the holes, and simply screwed them in.
I wanted to show you the difference the misters make!
To the left is the car wash with no misters.
Its fun, but not super exciting.
To the right is the car wash with misters.
You can't see all the water because it is so fine and is shooting everywhere!
Time to test it out!!
My boys had an absolute blast running and driving their various cars through the car wash!
And they were soaked with each pass through thanks to the misters.
The 2nd day we had the car wash up I decided we needed some sponge bombs to drive through so I ran
to the Dollar Tree for sponges and whipped them up and tied them off onto the car wash.
You can find tutorials for making these sponge bombs all over Pinterest.
I used this tutorial from One Charming Party.
This car wash has been the BEST thing to happen to us so far this summer!
Its fun, relatively inexpensive, and we can use it again and again each year!
A few side notes:
You can use the PVC cement if you want to be certain that the car wash will not fall apart.
We decided NOT to use it for two reasons. 1) We want to be able to easily store this car wash so that means dismantling it at the end of the season so it doesn't take up a lot of room. 2) It is holding up amazingly well without any cement!
One thing I definitely recommend is to tighten all of the joints before each use of the car wash. We learned that on day two. Tightening only takes a minute and will ensure your car wash will not bust apart once it reaches full water pressure when the hose is turned on.
It will take a couple of minutes before you reach full pressure once the water hose is turned on. Be patient and don't complain to your husband that its not working (not that you would ever do that *cough*).
While my husband and I tag teamed this project (and had it started and complete during nap time I might add!), it can definitely be a one person job. Ladies, you can definitely do this yourself! Especially with the help of the PVC pipe cutter!
So let's look at cost:
5 pieces of PVC pipe: $8.90
4 caps: $1.62
Tees: $2.52 (10 pack)
4 side outlet elbows: $4.72
Female hose connector: $0.30
Base cost total: $18.06
Primer (for cement): $3.97
So if you didn't want to use the cement and only grabbed 1 or 2 packs of misters,
you could do this project for less than $25!
Not a bad investment for multiple summers of fun!!