System Size: 137.97 kW (3 separate solar systems)
Installation Type: Roof Mounts
Installation Date: 2018 - 2020
Location: Aston, PA & Kennett Square, PA
Annual Environmental Offset: 125 tons of CO2, or 2912 trees
The average car wash pays between $0.50 and $1.00 in electricity costs for each car that drives through the suds, says one study by ElectricChoice.com.
With a figure like that, it’s no surprise that automated carwashes depend heavily on electricity. It’s also no surprise that their electricity bills make up a large portion of their operational costs.
However, energy rates are consistently on the rise, meaning so too is the cost of running a car wash. But what if there was a way to stabilize these rates - or even to reduce them all together?
Gary Regester is the owner of Mr. Wizard Car Wash, a chain of four car wash locations located in Southeastern PA. In 2018, Regester began to implement a solution to his business’s high energy bills - solar energy.
Regester flipped the switch on his first solar energy system - a 52.8 kW array mounted to the roof of his Aston, PA car wash in the Fall of 2018. Paradise Energy Solutions, a solar installer based in Lancaster County, installed the 132 solar panels that produce 59,952 kWh of free energy in just the first year alone.
Regester also has a 39.66 kW solar system at his Kennett Square location that was installed in 2019, and two more systems in the works for the Chadds Ford and Worcester locations.
“Besides the obvious savings, I see an increase in the value of my properties. Recent appraisals show the property value increasing by more than the cost of the solar installation.”
And for Mr. Wizard Car Wash, there was another major incentive for installing the system.
“Our car washes have been certified green for several years. The addition of solar is the finishing touch on our being environmentally friendly,” says Regester. “It shows our customers that we are doing our part for the environment.”