Cutting your losses

Cutting your losses

The VP of Sonny’s CarWash College takes a look into if it is worth it to pour money into old equipment.

Have you ever been in a relationship that you know in your heart is over, but your mind tries to convince you everything is fine rather than cutting your losses at that point?

I’m sure at some point, we’ve all had a failed relationship that we hung onto for longer than we should have, and it doesn’t necessarily have to be a romantic relationship either. 

Maybe It was a friend that mistook kindness for weakness and took advantage of the friendship. In your heart, you feel betrayed, yet maybe your head says to give them another chance rather than cutting your losses.

Perhaps it was business with a certain vendor for years who always promised the best price, only to find out the new wash across town is paying a lower rate than you.

Again, it feels like the rug has been pulled out from under you. You know you should end the relationship immediately, but maybe the angel on the right shoulder overrules the devil on the left and tells you to give them another chance rather than firing them and cutting your losses.

To tie this back to the car wash industry, how is your relationship with your current equipment? Be honest with yourself. Do you know in your heart that its over, but your mind is trying to convince you that you can patch it together for another year or two? Is it time to stop throwing good money after bad and cut your losses?

All equipment has a useful life. Once surpassed, it’s time to determine whether or not the money poured into it to keep it working would be better suited towards the purchase of new equipment.

In most cases, it is. If you maintained your equipment well and got some extra longevity out of it, good for you, but at some point you’re operating on outdated technology. By directing funds towards new, state of the art equipment, you can reduce your labor cost and produce a cleaner, drier, shinier car that will drive up volume, which in turn, will drive up profits and allow for a quicker ROI on the cost of the new equipment.

So, how do you know? Is there a magic formula to know when to cut your losses? Not really, but there are suggestions such as the 10% rule. If you’re spending more than 10% of the purchase price of newer equipment to keep your old equipment operational, it’s probably time to cut your losses.

If you are at this point, you know in your heart that it’s over. Your head is still putting up a fight, insisting that you can milk another year out of it. But let’s face it, it’s over. Cut your losses and move on.

All relationships are difficult. Some are worth fighting for and salvaging when things get tough.

Your old and outdated car wash equipment isn’t one of them. State of the art equipment will not only produce a cleaner car, but it will also help you to cut your losses.

All the best!

Bob Fox is the VP of Sonny’s CarWash College and has 37 years experience in the industry. You can reach Bob at [email protected]

You May Also Like

Bang for your buck!

Tips on making the most of your team’s time at The Car Wash Show™.

If it seems less than a year ago you returned home from an International Carwash Association (ICA) show in Las Vegas … that is because it was. It was last November, so only six months ago. Yet, here we are, on the precipice of another.

This year’s show in Nashville promises to be an improvement upon the watered-down version that was hosted last year. We should see more vendors taking larger booth spaces to showcase their wares and pre-show registrations more in line with pre-pandemic shows.

Mad world

Bob Fox of Sonny’s The CarWash Factory gives his perspective on the success of the carwash industry despite negative external factors.

New and improved

Learn how CarWash College by Sonny’s The CarWash Factory is enhancing its Equipment Repair course.

The relevance of relevancy

Bob Fox of Sonny’s The CarWash Factory discusses the importance of rewarding hard work.

Tap into the secret of the secret sauce

Sonny’s took the time to talk to Paul Kalscheur, GM of Sonny’s CarWash Water by Velocity, to ask him some questions about water quality and its importance in the wash process.

Other Posts

Navigating opportunities and challenges

The dynamic express carwash industry offers promising opportunities for entrepreneurs and investors amid growing consumer demand for convenient, eco-friendly automotive solutions.

Navigating opportunities and challenges
Sonny’s announces 2023 Instructor of the Year

TAMARAC, Fla. — Each year, the Shawn R. Brown Award for Instructional Excellence is given in memory of Shawn Brown, a former Car Wash College instructor whose life was cut tragically short.

sonnys instructor of the year awards
Quality over quantity

Focusing on improving carwash operations will drive overall value.

Driving Forward: The growth and opportunities in the evolving carwash market

A review of the real estate and market trends and issues of this industry.