According to the Coin Laundry Association, coin-operated laundromats have existed for nearly seven decades. These establishments provide what the association calls a necessary service for customers -- especially renters, many of whom do not own their own washers and dryers. Customers' schedules, the environmental impact of a laundromat on the community, children's needs and technology shape a laundromat is run and the mix of services offered.
Not Solely Self-Serve
Generally, full-service laundries include drop-off and pick-up, stain removal, ironing, folding, fireproofing and starching in their menu of services. Largely self-service laundromats sprinkle some of the offerings of full-service laundries to accommodate customers who may lack the time or patience needed to wash, dry and fold all their laundry items. "Entrepreneur Magazine" reported in 2008 that over 50 percent of coin-operated laundromats provide wash-and-fold service.
Coins or Plastic
Many laundromats consist of coin-operated machines, but some also accept payment by debit card and credit card. According to HK Laundry Equipment, owners of card-operated (or at least partially card-operated) laundromats can reduce or avoid the labor involved in collecting and handling quarters and problems of change machines not taking bills or not making change. Customers may prefer the convenience of not needing to hunt for change or change makers to use the laundry machines. If you opt for accepting card payments, however, card fees might eat into your earnings.
Dine, Relax and Clean
Because some laundromat customers take children and wireless devices along when they do laundry, newer laundromats feature more than machines and clothes-folding tables. Supersuds in Long Beach, California, and Washouse in Fort Collins, Colorado, have children's play areas and offer free Wi-Fi. Internet access can help customers complete work or school assignments, play games, or interact on social media while they clean clothes. High-definition televisions at laundromats allow customers to follow sports, news and favorite shows while their clothes tumble in washers and dryers. Other laundromat trends include coffee, snacks and even in-store music events.
Efficient and Green Machines
Because of regulations and environmental awareness, front-end loading machines have become prevalent in laundromats. EnergyStar.gov says that ENERGYSTAR rated washers can handle 20-pound loads, while their top-loading counterparts can wash only 10 to 15 pounds at a time. The Arizona Department of Water Resources reports that front-end loading washers, also known as horizontal-axis washers, consume less water and energy than top-loading washers. Faster spinning also removes more water and reduces dryer times.
- Entrepreneur: Starting a Business: How to Start a Coin-Operated Laundry
- Energy Star: Products: Commercial Clothes Washers
- Arizona Department of Water Resources: Technologies -- Laundry Facilities
- Washhouse Laundry - Laundromat: About
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Telephone Point of Purchase Survey (TROPS) Respondents: Definition of Items -- Laundry of Dry Cleaning Services
- Supersuds Laundromat: Home
- HK Laundry Equipment: The Difference Between Coin & Card Operated Laundromats
- Coin Laundry Association: Industry Overview Additional Information
- Photo Credit Caroline Schiff/Blend Images/Getty Images
- Internal Revenue Service: Businesses: Small Businesses & Self-Employed: Cash Intensive Businesses Audit Techniques Guide - Chapter 15 Laundromats
- California Energy Commission: Commercial Clothes Dryers:Codes and Standards Enhancement (CASE) Initiative For PY 2013: Title 20 Standards Development
- Coin Laundry Association: Home
A laundromat is the first choice for many who need to wash and dry their laundry. Whether you don't own a washer...
How to Open a Laundromat
Although some believe a self-service laundry business provides passive income, the reverse is more often true. Not only are the steps and...
How to Use a Laundromat
There seems to come a time in everyone's life when they must venture into a laundromat. Whether you find yourself needing to...
How to Operate a Laundromat
Operating a laundromat can be profitable and rewarding in many other ways. You must be a people person to interact with your...
How to Start Your Own Laundry Mat Business
Knowing how to start your own laundry mat business will help you create your own fortune in this economy. Everyone needs to...
Instructions on How to Use a Coin Laundry Washing Machine
Coin-operated washing machines can be found in a variety of places, from apartment complexes to your local laundromat. They operate similarly to...
How to Build a Mobile Laundromat
With the increasingly busy society we live in, more and more people are outsourcing their laundry to professionals. People who work long...
Duties of a Laundry Attendant
Laundry attendants are essential components of the networks of housekeeping and maintenance staffs found in commercial and public facilities. Common facilities where...