aking vehicles glimmer and sparkle isn’t the only mission at Four Seasons Power Wash.
Sterling’s newest car wash also works to improve the quality of life in the community.
Owners Chris Williams and Kevin Yepsen of Williams & Yepsen Management LLC of Galva and General Manager Bob Conklin of Sterling have made their business active in the community through fundraising for local schools and organizations.
In the first 3 months after it opened March 8, Four Seasons helped raise nearly $1,000 for Home of Hope Cancer Wellness Center in Dixon and the Sterling-Rock Falls Family YMCA, and more organizations have signed on to team up with the business to raise funds.
Four Seasons sets aside a timeframe, typically on a Saturday, where a portion of sales are donated to local groups.
“It’s a great way for organizations to make several hundreds of dollars without any work,” Williams said. “It’s a great way for us to give back to the community.
“We don’t want to just be the wash where we just wash cars. We’ve taken it a step beyond in terms of how we try to give back.”
Four Seasons works as community partners, and the teamwork concept extends outside of the business plan – it’s how the employees conduct themselves, which is a point of pride for Conklin, who runs day-to-day operations.
“I just love all of the kids here,” Conklin said. “They’re friendly, nice, neat and courteous.”
After customers make their payment and arrive at the front of the 150-foot bay, which can accommodate vehicles big and small,an employee pre-treats the vehicle with a bug-breaking solution, a concentrate specifically designed to rehydrate the bugs that have been dried onto a vehicle before high pressure hoses doe the rest of the work.
Sometimes even Conklin or Williams will step out of the office to handle the bug juice.
“Being a rural town like Sterling, and with people coming in from the country, some front ends we see are all bugs,” Williams said.
“Getting the bugs off is the hardest part of the whole wash,” Conklin added, “but we get them off.”
Once inside the bay, a pair of workers prewash the vehicle before it gets on a 100-foot conveyor belt for a deeper clean.
Customers can stay in their vehicles during the wash-and-dry process, which might feel like a carnival ride for the little ones. Along the ride, the customer is treated to a colorful view: a series of water sprays lighted in neon colors, soap sprays that sprinkle rainbow-colored solutions, and large brush and sponge apparatuses.
The wash concludes with blasts from 950,000 BTU dryers. Chemicals in the wash are designed to maximize effectiveness of cleaning materials.
It’s large enough to do 100 vehicles an hour, end-to-end, and it’s a type of car wash commonly found in bigger cities, Williams said.
Packages range from $8 for a basic wash to $18 for the works. Customers can pull up to one of two manned pay stations with cash, credit or debit cards or the Four Seasons Power Wash phone app, available from Google Play or the Apple App Store. A loyalty program also is available.
Customers also can use one of 17 pull-up vacuum stalls for free.
Four Seasons also opened a location in Clinton, Iowa – at Lincoln Way and South 19th Street, near the old Paul’s Discount Store – and it has plans to expand to Freeport, the Plano-Sandwich area, and Dubuque, Iowa, in the near future.
So far, they like what’s going on at its first location, Williams said.
“It’s proven out to be what we thought it would be.”