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Industry Interview: Steve Clingan from Vapor Systems!


1. Before getting into some questions about Vapor Systems, can you tell me a little about yourself personally? What are your interests outside of detailing?

Well, It’s been a long strange road! Started as a Lead Singer back in the eighties with a rock and roll band. Met my wife of going on thirty years, and was informed it was time to come off the road life and “get a real JOB!” Still enjoy Music. Love to fish and really any sport you can think of.

2. Where did you work before Vapor Systems?

So the real job started with selling cars, then to management.

3. How did Vapor Systems come about/how did the business start?

An ex-business partner and I saw a steam cleaner at a biz-op trade show and the light came on. They were being touted as great tile cleaners, and great cleaners in general, which they are, but no mention of automotive use. So we started a small sales group in the Midwest Ecosteam (Long before the Web). We were both “car guys’, so since we spoke the language and knew the problems associated with detailing, having seen cars stink because people were getting the cars wet, we jumped on this opportunity. A couple years later we came upon the VX5000. Fast forwarding a little bit, the web was really starting to pick up and ten years ago the sales originations were disbanded and I bought out the “Master Distributor” and now own the distribution for North America.

4. For our readers who don’t know about Vapor Systems, can you give us a quick overview of the popular VX5000 and why it should be a detailers steam cleaner of choice?

Well, steam is steam and it does what it does. With that said, why it has become the detailers tool of choice is the setup of the unit. Most steam vapor cleaners on the market have short, 8 foot hoses that trigger style hoses to release the steam. Their pressure regulators are physical dials that are on the unit. With the VX5000, The hose is twelve feet long and pressure controls the (low, medium and high) switches are on the hose, so you don’t have stop working and go mess with the dial to adjust the pressure. No triggers to squeeze. That and our unmatched customer service. (And BTW, the cars dry in minutes not hours or days).

5. Are there any misconceptions or errors customers make when setting up or using this machine that you could educate us about?

The biggest misconception would be that some people think all they have to do is put water in start detailingnd startdetailing with out reading the manual and doing the daily maintenance, which is simple. We’re are using distilled water in the tank, so if you are not, everyday when finished the hard water deposits in it remain. You should always elevate the pressure from the ( shown in the instructional DVD ) and drain the unit from the drain plug on the bottom of the unit. Push a little clean water through it and that’s it!

6. If you had to give anyone one tip on using the VX5000 or steam cleaning overall, what would it be?

To be redundant (on purpose) DRAIN YOUR UNIT!

2 comments on Industry Interview: Steve Clingan from Vapor Systems!

  1. Does the unit need to be drained every day,or at all, if only distilled water is used?

  2. Mark Wetty says:

    I have used this unit for almost ten years, first one lasted seven years. I only use distilled in second unit, but i do clean it out with vinegar four times a year anyway.

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