Car Wash Goes Green, Saves Big
Bill Benedetto Jr. reports electricity, water and soap usage down at least a third at Flo's Auto Bath in Wakefield with eco-friendly machinery. If you have a hybrid or electric car, he's got a special for you.
A Wakefield car wash has invested in efficient new technology, and so far, it's reportedly paying financial dividends as well as environmental ones.
Bill Benedetto Jr., owner of Flo's Auto Bath on Water Street in Wakefield, reports that the new self-service car wash equipment gets the job done in less than seven minutes - compared to about 10 minutes on older equipment. Along with that, the new generation of car wash technology uses about a third the electricty, water, and soap as older machines, said Benedetto, who noted that the equipment is also made in the U.S.
"Everybody's trying to do something. It directly affects your bottom line, whatever you can save," said Benedetto, a lifelong Wakefield resident whose family members first moved to town from Italy in the early 1900s.
For the past year and a half, the car wash has also used biodegradable Green Scene soap.
Other details of the business deliver their own energy savings. For example, high-efficiency lights in the car wash bays have eliminated the need for outside lighting, said Benedetto. Automatic doors in the car wash bays keep heat from escaping the building. Also, the electrical motor powering the car wash equipment uses soft starter technology to save electricity, while also requiring fewer motions of the machine over the car.
The car wash equipment also reportedly digitally maps the car to know when to stop spraying - even keeping track of where the wheels are.
With the newer equipment, Benedetto estimated that his business now uses about 24 gallons of water per car wash. In contrast, an average car wash using just a garden hose would use more like 60 to 75 gallons, he said.
"We always have our eye on the end product - it hasn't suffered at all - it's actually improved," said Benedetto. "I'm most proud of all that we're putting out the best product we can put out."
Editor's Note: Benedetto also recently announced a "Go Green" special in honor of St. Patrick's Day where people who drives a hybrid or electric vehicle can get three free car washes if they do a "before and after" photo. Click here for more information.