Are car washes open in Tier 4 in England? The new rules explained

CAR washes are among the services affected by Tier 4 coronavirus lockdown rules.

As of midnight last night, three quarters of England are now under the toughest coronavirus lockdown measures.

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

Changes to Tier 4 came into force at midnight on December 30


Changes to Tier 4 came into force at midnight on December 30Credit: Alamy

It comes as a new mutant strain of coronavirus believed to be at least 50% more contagious threatens to overwhelm the NHS.

Yesterday, a further 981 Covid-19 deaths were recorded – the highest daily figure since April 24, when 1,010 deaths were reported. 

Now, areas including the North East and the Midlands join London and the South East in Tier 4.

Under the restrictions, households are urged to stay at home and only go outside if necessary.

Non-essential retail shops, indoor gyms and hairdressers must also close – but what does it mean for those wanting to get a car wash? 

Full list of areas in Tier 4

HERE is the full list of areas in Tier 4.

East Midlands

  • Derby and Derbyshire
  • Leicester City and Leicestershire
  • Lincolnshire
  • Northamptonshire
  • Nottingham and Nottinghamshire

East of England

  • Bedford, Central Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes
  • Cambridgeshire
  • Essex, Southend-on-Sea and Thurrock
  • Hertfordshire
  • Norfolk
  • Peterborough
  • Suffolk


All 32 London boroughs plus City of London

North East

  • North East (this area includes the local authorities of County Durham, Gateshead, South Tyneside and Sunderland)
  • North of Tyne (this area includes the local authorities of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, North Tyneside and Northumberland)
  • Tees Valley (this area includes the local authorities of Darlington, Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Redcar and Cleveland, and Stockton-on-Tees)

North West

  • Cumbria
  • Greater Manchester
  • Lancashire, Blackburn with Darwen, and Blackpool
  • Warrington and Cheshire Region

South East

  • Berkshire
  • Brighton and Hove, East Sussex and West Sussex
  • Buckinghamshire
  • Hampshire, Southampton and Portsmouth
  • Isle of Wight
  • Kent and Medway
  • Oxfordshire
  • Surrey

South West

  • Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole
  • Gloucestershire (Cheltenham, Cotswold, Forest of Dean, Gloucester City, Stroud and Tewkesbury)
  • Somerset (Mendip, Sedgemoor, Somerset West and Taunton, and South Somerset)
  • Swindon

West Midlands

  • Birmingham, Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton
  • Coventry
  • Solihull
  • Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent
  • Warwickshire

Are car washes open in Tier 4?

Automatic car washes are allowed to stay open in all places that are under Tier 4 coronavirus restrictions.

But unfortunately, manual car washes are not allowed to open over fears it could put workers at risk of catching and spreading the virus.

Many automatic car washes are located at petrol stations in the UK, which are able to open in Tier 4 because they are an essential service

Vehicle repair, MOT services, bicycle shops, taxi services and vehicle hire businesses can also keep operating during Tier 4 lockdowns. 

You can also still visit the supermarket for food and other essentials.

Are car washes open in Tier 3, 2 and 1?

The government does not specifically address car washes in its Tier 3 rules online.

But it is assumed manual car washes are allowed to stay open in Tiers 3, 2, and 1, as long as the business is abiding by Covid-secure guidelines.

Automatic car washes are allowed to remain open.

The Sun has contacted the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy for clarification and we will update this page when we hear back. 

Garden centres can also stay open in Tier 4 areas but shoppers must social distance and wear a mask to keep shoppers and staff safe.

We explain whether DIY stores are open in Tier 4 – and the opening times of B&Q, Homebase and Wickes.

Tier 4 lockdowns may last until April, Boris Johnson warns


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