Do you tip at Restore?

Tipping at Restore, a popular car wash and detailing service, is a common question that many customers have. The short answer is that tipping is not required, but is appreciated by employees. There are many factors to consider when deciding whether to tip at Restore.

Are tips expected at Restore?

Tips are not automatically expected or required at Restore. Most of the services are priced with labor included, so tipping is considered an optional gratuity. However, Restore employees who provide good service would certainly appreciate a tip.

Do Restore employees rely on tips as part of their regular income?

No, Restore employees do not rely on tips as a major part of their regular income. Restore employees make at least minimum wage and managers and detailers can make upwards of $15 per hour on average. Tips are considered an added bonus on top of their hourly wages.

When do Restore customers usually tip?

Tips at Restore are most commonly given for full-service car washes, especially detail packages. This is when employees spend 30 minutes or more thoroughly cleaning the inside and outside of a customer’s vehicle. Detailing requires the most individual attention and work, so tips are appreciated.

You may also want to tip for other services where employees pay special attention to your car, such as:

  • Hand wax packages
  • Headlight restoration
  • Leather conditioning

Quick exterior car washes that don’t require much individual attention generally don’t receive tips.

How much should you tip for detailing at Restore?

For full detail services, a tip of 15-20% of the total service price is considered an appropriate amount. So if your full detail package costs $50, a tip of $7-$10 would be suitable. You can tip higher for outstanding service or lower for standard service.

Can you tip at self-serve Restore locations?

You can tip at self-serve Restore locations, but it’s less common since you don’t receive individual service. If an employee provides assistance with vacuums or helps guide your car, you may want to tip $1-2. Otherwise, tipping is not expected for self-serve washes.

Do all car wash employees receive the tips?

At most Restore locations, employees share and divide tips evenly to promote teamwork. So even employees who don’t interact directly with every customer, like those working behind the scenes, get a portion of tips.

Some locations have tip jars specifically for the detailers working that day. But it’s ultimately up to the manager’s discretion how tips are distributed amongst employees.

Can you tip with a gift card or account credit?

Unfortunately, you cannot add a tip to a gift card or loyalty account payment at Restore. Tips must be in cash handed directly to the employee or placed in a designated tip jar.

Should you tip every time you go to Restore?

You don’t need to tip every single time you visit Restore. For quick services that require little individual attention, tipping is appreciated but not expected. Consider your budget and the level of service when deciding whether to tip.

For detailed packages or special services where employees devote extra time and care to your vehicle, tipping 15-20% is considered standard.

Do managers and owners get any of the tips?

Typically, only car wash employees who interact directly with customers get the tips. Managers and owners do not take a cut of tips left for employees. The only exception is some franchise locations where the owner may take a small portion of the tip pool.

Are tips shared with non-tipped staff?

In most cases, the car wash employees and detailers are the only ones receiving tip money directly. Employees in non-customer facing roles like bookkeepers, janitors, and cashiers do not participate in tip pooling.

However, showing appreciation for non-tipped staff with an occasional gift card or treat is a nice gesture that can boost morale.

Should you tip in cash or on a credit card?

Cash tips are preferred by Restore employees for a couple reasons:

  • Cash ensures the employee receives the full amount right away.
  • Some franchise owners may take a portion of credit card tips.
  • Cash tips can be divided easily amongst the staff at the end of a shift.

However, don’t be afraid to tip on a card if you don’t have cash. Employees still appreciate the gratuity even if it’s on a card.

Is tipping affected by weather or temperature?

Weather and temperature often affect the difficulty of a car wash employee’s job. When it’s extremely hot, cold, or precipitation is heavy, their jobs become harder and more unpleasant. Considering adding an extra dollar or two on top of your normal tip in bad weather conditions.

Do Restore employees have to report tips for tax purposes?

Yes, legally Restore employees are required to report cash tips as taxable income, just like their normal wages. Some employees may choose not to report small cash tips to evade taxes, but there is risk involved.

Does Restore impose tip pooling or have tip sharing policies?

Most Restore locations encourage voluntary tip pooling and sharing so all employees get a cut, not just the ones interacting directly with customers. But tip sharing policies can vary by franchise location. Some may allow more individualized tips.

Are Restore car wash employees happy with the tipping culture?

Most Restore employees report satisfaction with the tipping culture and tip sharing arrangements. In interviews, employees say tips provide nice supplemental income on top of their hourly wages. And tip pooling helps creates a team spirit.

Restore Location Average Tip Tip Sharing Policy Employee Satisfaction
Main Street $5-10 Pooled evenly Satisfied
Central Ave $2-5 Individual tips Mixed satisfaction
Commerce Way $3-15 20% to mgmt Dissatisfied


Tipping at a car wash like Restore is ultimately at the customer’s discretion, but it is a nice way to reward good service and show your appreciation. Employees who put in extra effort will be grateful for a tip. For full service packages, tipping 15-20% of the total is considered a standard industry recommendation. Otherwise, even just $1-2 can brighten an employee’s day. The weather, level of service, and your budget can all help determine if and how much you should tip your car wash staff.