Cleaning a car at home with average, store-bought car wash soap isn’t actually the most environmentally friendly option. After all, once you rinse those suds off, where are they going? The grass? The sidewalk cracks? The storm drain? The groundwater?
Water Usage and Car Wash Products
Water is actually used at a much higher rate when hose washing. Yet water conservation is only the beginning. Washing at home or in a parking lot introduces harmful cleaning chemicals and phosphates from road film into storm drains that are intended to deliver rain run-off into rivers and streams. This impacts the plants and animal life in that ecosystem. Professional car wash companies empty excess waste into the sewer where it belongs.
When it comes to automatic washes, chemistry and pressure is favored over volume. Car washes use very targeted applicator systems with carefully monitored water usage as opposed to general home car washing methods. When your next door neighbor or enthusiastic youth group fundraiser wash a car, they usually use the hose. Hoses do move a lot of water, unfortunately that water comes out without a lot of pressure, and therefore without a lot of cleaning potential. Automatic car washes use minimal water but excel the pressure to get the most cleaning power from the water being used.
Mixing hose water with a car wash soap in buckets does helps conserve water, but even then the final rinse can use up to 50 or even 150 gallons very quickly. The water at car washes is mixed with cleaning solutions including presoak, body soap, sealant, and a spot free rinse aid. Since the chemistry is right, less water is needed to get a better clean at automatic washes.
Car washes also utilize high pressure rinse arches, allowing a small amount of water to hit the car with enough force to rinse off lingering grime or detergents without causing damage or wasting water. In the end, compared to that 100 gallons per car, an automatic wash can use as little as 50 total gallons, and of that 50 gallons, most isn’t actually expended.
The water at automatic car washes is largely reclaimed. Reclaiming water might sound odd, and make one think “who wants their car washed with water that’s already got dirt and sand in it from other cars?” In reality reclaimed water is grit-free and intensely filtered to remove foreign particles and contaminants . Car washes use water reclamation systems in order to cut down on the amount of new water they buy from the city each time a car is washed. The water is treated with detergents used to break up dirt and grime, and then sucked back up into a system that filters out heavy compounds and skims off light chemicals, leaving the water clean and ready for reuse.
Reverse osmosis systems add extra purification to the process, distilling water until it is even cleaner than your average tap water for a truly spot-free rinse. Modern reclaim and RO systems actually have automatic tunnel car washes using as little as 15 fresh gallons of water per car—less than two toilet flushes in most of the country.
So to sum it up, it is better for the environment, your vehicle, and your budget to use automatic car washes. At Flagstop Car Wash we use only the best equipment and products to ensure safety, clean water and minimal impact on the environment. Stop by one of our convenient locations and you and your vehicle will be feeling good knowing you’re helping to conserve water, while getting your vehicle sparkling clean.
Right now, you’re probably looking over a not-so-dirty car wondering if you should wash your car today. It’s a fair question. As a car wash company ourselves, we certainly would say that any day is a good day to get your car wash. For our RVA Wash Club members, who have access to unlimited car washes for a low monthly fee, getting their car washed every single day is entirely within their plan.
How often should you wash your car?
In a blog article posted over a year ago, we talked about how often you should wash your car. We recommended washing you car about once every two weeks. For many car owners, this is a little more often than what they are used to. For those individuals who think that every two weeks is a bit much, perhaps our article about what happens when you don’t wash your car will help you make an informed decision.
Assuming that you are going to wash your car either this week or next week, now you have to decide what day in the next two weeks. Thanks to the interesting world of the internet, we can provide you with a fun way to figure that out. Spin the wheel below to test if you should wash your car today, tomorrow, or sometime next week.
Locations around Richmond, Chesterfield, and Hopewell
Flagstop has nine locations around the Richmond, VA area. We have a location in Ashland, North Chesterfield, Chester (W Hundred Rd), Chester (Bermuda Crossroads Ln), Chesterfield, Colonial Heights, West End, Glen Allen and Hopewell.
For residents in Richmond and surrounding areas, a heavy pollen season is no foreign concept. Richmond has made it to the top of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America’s list of “Spring Allergy Capitals” for two years in a row. While we’ve been bumped down from spot #2 on the list, being #10 still isn’t something to be proud of.
Richmond’s struggle with pollen was especially heavy this year, starting as early as February with prematurely warm temperatures and quite a lot of rain. Last month, one day made it into the top 5 worst pollen days since 1988.
All of this pollen means that your car may still have a yellowish hue for a few weeks after the peak of pollen season. If you’ve read our previous blog post about why you should wash pollen off your car, you know how that can be important.
Wash Your Car Today
Flagstop has 9 locations around Richmond, Virginia where you can wash your car or have it washed for you.
Flagstop has locations in:
- North Chesterfield
- A full-service location off of 301 in Chester
- An express location off of 301 in Chester
- South Chesterfield
- Colonial Heights
- West End
- Glen Allen
Many of our locations include vacuums to get the pollen out of your seats. After you’ve washed off the pollen, treat your car to a wax coating or some extra car polish car to protect your coat of paint.
Plus, with the RVA Wash Club, you can wash your car an unlimited number of times per month so you never have to worry about a dirty vehicle.
We are excited to announce that our Staples Mill Express location will be undergoing renovations starting on September 4th! During this time we will be closed, so we ask that our loyal customers of this location visit our location on Parham Road, or any of our other locations in the metro-Richmond area. For a full list of all locations, click here.
Please note that if you do have an RVA Wash Club membership with us, you can use it at ANY of our locations! That includes both Express and Full Service!
We thank you for your patience and we cannot wait to give all of our loyal customers the latest and greatest in car wash technology! We will make an announcement at a later date for our Grand Re-Opening.
Renovations are officially underway at our Chester Express location! We are working diligently to give all of our loyal customers the most up-to-date car wash equipment there is to offer.
We are extremely excited about these renovations and cannot wait to share the results with you all. An announcement about our Grand Re-Opening will be made in the near future.
While this location is being renovated, please note that our RVA Wash Club members can always visit any one of our locations! For a full list of locations, please visit the locations page of our website.
We at Flagstop Car Wash would like to thank Nancy Holowecky and the Veterans of Foreign Wars Auxiliary Post #637. We are extremely honored to have received the Patriotic Citizen Award at our Hopewell Express location.
For many years, Flagstop Car Wash has been proud to fly the colors of the United States of America at each and every one of our locations. We graciously accept this honor, and we will continue to honor the brave men and women who serve the United States Armed Forces.
It was great to have NUTasha and the Richmond Flying Squirrels crew stop by our Iron Bridge Road Full Service location to clean the Nutzy Van!
We’re proud to announce that we have partnered up with the Richmond Flying Squirrels to be the official sponsor of the Party Deck at The Diamond. The Flagstop Party Deck includes 24 seats and can be rented out by parties throughout the upcoming 2018 season. The season will begin for the Squirrels on April 5th, and the first home game at The Diamond will be Friday, April 13th at 7:00 PM.
Here’s to a great partnership with the Flying Squirrels and Flagstop Car Wash! Have Fun and Go Nuts!
For more information, please visit their site.
We are NOW HIRING at our Iron Bridge Road Full Service Location! If you’re interested in applying, here’s some information.
We’re hiring high-energy individuals with excellent customer service for our renovated Flagstop Car Wash location to provide high-quality detailing & wash services! Applicants must be able to hustle, handle a high volume of work, and take direction very well. We’re looking for people with good work ethic, timely habits, and dedication. Opportunities for leadership, management, learning new skills, and growth within the company will help you become successful now and in the future!
Positions include many benefits including Health & Dental Insurance, paid time off after 1 year of full-time employment, discounted car washes & services on your personal vehicle, extensive training on products & services, opportunity for advancement based on work ethic and not seniority, and more, including…
Our College Tuition Assistance Scholarship Program starting in May 2018. This program is built to enable education for all of our employees, both incoming and current. There will be more details in regards to applying for this scholarship soon!
Job Type: Full-time/Part-time
Salary: $7.25 to $15.00 per hour (Plus tips!)
*Salary varies on Full-time/Part time*
11031 Iron Bridge Rd
Chester, VA 23831-1440
You must have a valid driver’s license and include references with your application. Previous work experience, volunteer work, coaches, teachers, and mentors are preferred. Family/friends are not valid.
The job includes flexible hours and great pay. We’re open from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm, and if you have any questions, feel free to contact us at 804-768-0090. You can apply on our Careers page or our Facebook page — we look forward to hearing from you!
Our Iron Bridge Road full service location in Richmond, VA has re-opened with all new car wash equipment! Stop by and check it out before heading out for Thanksgiving travel. We’re still working on the lobby so please excuse our mess…