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The Car Wash Guys crews soon began to gain local recognition.

Camarillo Inc./The Car Wash Guys/Gals
Camarillo Daily News staff

The owner of this $3.6 million a year company doesn't don a silk suit when he works.  He doesn't sit behind a solid oak desk with his feet up either.

He gets in his truck every morning and makes rounds to parking lots, where he washes cars.

He has 48 other teams from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara who pay him daily to rent his equipment.  He could make a decent living just from what he makes in renting.  So why does he indulge in physical labor?

"I'm out there every day.  It's the only way to understand what the customer needs," said Lance Winslow III, president of The Car Wash Guys.

"The 28-year-old entrepreneur has been in business since age 12.

He started out by washing airplanes for free rides.   By the time he was 14, with a little help from mom and dad, he started his own airplane-washing company, later combining it with car washing.

Now he's strictly car washing and loving it.

He has an interesting story about how his company was named.

"It's really neat because my customers named my company," said Winslow.  He and his teams travel to different car lots and let people inside know they are there.  The person told will then announce the car wash guys here!"

For two and a half years Winslow has been building his business.

He owns three of 48 company trucks.  He originally bought all the trucks, then discovered the high cost of insurance and sold most of them to those who wanted to work in the business.

Winslow said he is proud of many aspects of his business. For instance, he has created 96 jobs in the county and counting.  Winslow has his sights set big for his company.  He wants to spread his service throughout the country, creating more jobs.

He said the car washers make about $200 to $300 dollars a day and out of that, Winslow gets $25 for use of his equipment and name.  He doesn't want people to think this is a get-rich-quick scheme - car washers work hard.

Winslow said he is not even rich, but awaits the day.   "Right now, everything goes back into the business," he said.   "If I ever stop growing, then I'll be rich."  And he plans to make his current teams 1 percent partners in the business.  He wants to take everyone who helped him get started straight "to the top."

Winslow ever has some car wash gals.  The Car Wash Guys/Gals is an official trademark.  No other company can use that name.  And according to Winslow, no other company has ever washed 4,800 cars a day.

In addition to dedication to customers, Winslow also is dedicated to the environment. Only 2.5 gallons of wastewater is used to wash a car.   Winslow said he holds the only wastewater permit in the state.

In addition to a five gallon bucket used at home, 12 gallons of water per minute pours from a garden hose.

"We're really helping the water shortage," smiled Winslow.

He said he has had a couple of run-ins with cities who think The Car Wash Guys/Gals are taking business away from car wash stations in towns.   Winslow said he has been told a certain area is not zoned for a car wash.   "Well, the food truck comes by too, and you're not zoned for a restaurant either," was Winslow's comeback.

He said comments like that upset him because of the fact that he has created so many jobs and can offer people a chance to make a good living.

Winslow doesn't hire just anybody.  He wants clean-cut, drug-free workers who care about customers.

"Winners never quit and quitters never win." said Winslow.  "We did it.  We're No. 1.  We give a damn and we hustle.  It's just got to be that way."


"...this guy was washing a car in the middle of the parking lot.  When I asked what he was doing, he explained to me how the company worked." - Giuffre

Student-run business washes up SMC autos
staff writer for The Collegian

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to own your own business, or better yet, to have it already established before you've graduated from college?  For two St. Mary's students their dreams turned into reality.

Twenty-one year old Rob Giuffre and his 20 year-old partner John Porter, are taking the car washing industry by storm.  These young business entrepreneurs better know as The Car Wash Guys are the owners of a fast growing car washing business that they have brought to the Bay Area from Los Angeles.

"The Car Wash Guys" is a seventeen year old company that was started in L.A. by Lance Winslow and has since branched out into forty cities across three states.   Giuffre became involved in such an unusual business by accident.  "I was coming out of a store one day and this guy was washing a car in the middle of the parking lot.  When I asked him what he was doing, he explained to me how the company worked."

One might think it a little strange to be washing a car in the middle of a parking lot, but the unique thing about "The Car Wash Guys" is that they come to you.   Unlike the car wash at many gas stations, this is a mobile car washing service that travels to residential and business park areas in Moraga, Orinda, Lafayette, and Rheem.   Some of their clients include the post offices, rent-a-car companies, and GTE Mobile Net.

Giuffre's initial introduction to this company was about five years ago.  Since then he and his partner have brought their own franchise and are revolutionizing the car washing industry to fit today's fast paced busy lifestyle.

Seriously, with all of the homework, parties, and football games, no one even has time to clean their rooms, let alone wash their cars.  Well, SMC, your problems are solved.  On Fridays, "The Car Wash Guys" will be on campus for all of your car washing needs.

Aside from being extremely convenient, their prices are very reasonable.  Prices range anywhere from just $5.00 for an exterior wash to $32.50 for the super deluxe, which includes a wash, a coat of wax, tires, any rubber trim, vacuuming, dashboard cleaning, window washing and more...

One might think that running a business and going to college at the same time is pretty tough, but aside from having a keen sense for business, these two have good heads on their shoulders and have perfected the art of time management.  In addition to being a businessman, Porter is also a Residential Advisor and a member of the lacrosse team, which "doesn't allow me to work as often as I would like", he expresses regretfully.

Being that this is a six day a week operation, Giuffre and Porter have hired three other SMC students to lend a hand while they are in classes.  For those who think that this is just an after school job, be assured that these guys mean business.  Not only do they have a business license, but insurance and a patent on the company name.   They only use biodegradable products which should make all you Green Peace members happy.  What more could you ask for?  A couple of guys who wash your car and are environmentally conscious, as well.

So the next time your car needs a bath and you're too busy to do it yourself, give them a call.  The Car Wash Guys - 1-800-879-TRUE.

Car Wash Guys
San Mateo

Are you always meaning to get your car washed but never quite getting around to it?   Then Car Wash Guys may be the answer!

Car Wash Guys is a mobile car-washing service that will come to your home or office to clean your car.  Owned by Richard and Roberta Sherwood of Hillsborough, Car Wash Guys is a part of their family-owned RREM (For Richard, Roberta, Emily and Mark) Enterprises.

Prices are very reasonable, with a standard car wash priced at only $6 and a complete interior and exterior cleaning at only $12.  Car Wash products are also available.

Car Wash Guys also does a variety of fund-raisers.  For a sparkling clean car, simple dial 1-800-879-TRUE or look for Car Wash Guys on the Internet, WWW.CARWASHGUYS.COM

Reprinted from The Inspector, February 1998.

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