Keeping cars clean

Posted Wednesday, May. 14, 2014  comments  Print Reprints

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Randy Geisel recently commented about water restrictions and car washes.

I share concerns about the drought, but the comments related to car washes were based on incorrect information.

Car washes use very little water. Self-serve washes use only about 12-15 gallons per wash, conveyors about 35 gallons per car.

Considering annual water use, car washes are not in the top 1,000 largest water users.

Many car washes recycle. All car washes have “grit traps” where wash water is returned to the sanitary sewer.

Another inaccuracy: “A dirtier car doesn’t cost a person any money.”

Accumulation of dirt and other particles scratches your car’s finish. Bird droppings, acid rain, industrial pollutants, sap from trees and insects also damage paint.

A regular wash prevents contaminants from damaging the finish and the most dangerous problem: rust.

Many have a large investment in their vehicles, and when that investment is damaged, the value is reduced.

Not washing your car does cost a person money.

— Chuck Space, Executive Director, Southwest Car Wash Association, Austin

Protection vs. attention

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