Bleach Box

Drag racing is a motor racing style in which cars and engines usually race two times, first to reach a fixed finish line. The event follows a short straight course as it is the norm for top fuel dragging and funny cars, which are the standard for several big bracket races and other sanctioning bodies. To record race outcomes after the 1960s, they employ electronic time and speed sensing systems.

A burnout or bleach box keeps a car fixed and spins its wheels, allowing it to flame up and smoke due to friction. In drag races, it is the area on the pavement where bleach is added to allow the tires’ burning.


Drag racing is the source of burnout and has real meaning. Drag slicks at higher temperatures work faster, and burnout is the fastest way to increase the tire temperature right before a course. They scrub the tire of any waste and put down the rubber coat for more grip around the starting line. Often drag tracks use a specially reserved wet area known as the “bleach box,” as water is dumped in a particular zone to minimize pressure to initiate the burnout.

That was once a “bleach box” in the Hot Rod Magazine Drag Races Championship at Riverside, California, when bleach was used instead of water; it started in 1969 when the first burnout was made in NHRA. Don Garlits was the first to burn out the start, now a common practice. There has been water, bleach, and resin usage, and all water and bleach are said to function. The spectacular flames were also created early on the traction compound RFI. NHRA instead ordered the use of water because the use of explosive traction compounds was at risk.

The bleach box gradually becomes an effective way to compete and enjoy themselves during a race. Often considerable price money or products are involved, and vehicles may even be subsidized or expressly constructed as “burnout cars.” Burnout competition is judged on the audience’s reaction, and this style and attitude are critical considerations. Such competitors are especially common in Australia but are also held in North America.

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