Originally created 01/03/06

Meet the real Mr. Clean

She's got her daddy's money, her mama's good looks, more laughs than a stack of comic books.

Glenn Fryman, cigarette dangling from his mouth, sings country music while he scrubs away on the hood of a car.

Nearby, his scooter sits, ready to ride to the next job.

You already might have seen this 45-year-old cruising Augusta on his scooter, pulling a cart packed with car-cleaning materials and his radio. Since 1988, Mr. Fryman has traveled the Southeast, washing cars as the leader of Your Auto Valet, a car-washing company that comes to you.

"I may not be the best, but I'm the most convenient," Mr. Fryman said with a big smile.

It's all part of his charm - a salesman so convincing that he says he can "wash cars while it's raining."

Mr. Fryman discovered this career unexpectedly more than 18 years ago, after an addiction to cocaine left the former vacuum salesman from Virginia wandering through life.

One day in North Carolina, he walked into a drugstore and told the clerk he would wash his car for free if the man would give him $8 worth of car-cleaning supplies. As he washed the man's car, a woman asked him to wash hers. He was paid in cash, and the idea was born.

"I knew I could make money at it, and I always kept my car clean," Mr. Fryman said.

Now the Martinez resident lives close to his parents and supplements his car washing income by working the graveyard shift at the Evans Waffle House, where he provides "dinner and a show."

Mr. Fryman, who says he nets about $40,000 from car washes each year, has it down to a science.

"The last time I learned something new was 2000," he said, referring to the use of a towel in each hand when waxing and drying to prevent marks from a misplaced hand.

He isn't trying to keep his tricks of the trade a secret. He has trained several others who now operate mobile car washes in town and in other cities in the Southeast, including Charleston, S.C. He has even written a guide: Your Auto Valet: A proven guide to becoming a mobile automotive grooming specialist.

You won't find his book on shelves, but he'll sell it to you for about $25. Eventually, he said, he might wash cars less to push sales for his business plan.

Last week, he scrubbed and shined Michelle Nobles' car on Washington Road in the parking lot of Tomberlin Outdoor, where she works as a saleswoman.

"He'll be doing my car as long as he's willing," she said.

Reach Tony Lombardo at (706) 823-3227 or tony.lombardo@augustachronicle.com.

So, what's in that cart?

Glenn Fryman said it takes about $60 to supply a mobile car washer with a trailer full of equipment. Here are just some of the items you'll find in his:

- A bug sprayer, which he fills with water for a pressure wash

- A 1.5-inch paintbrush to get dust off the instrument panel

- A 12-volt portable vacuum cleaner

- A radio that usually blasts country music

- Car wax

- Cotton buffing towels

- Tire shine, cleaner and window cleaner

want a wash?

For more information, call Mr. Fryman at 726-2286. The cost is $60 for a full-size car or truck and $15 a week after that, or $20 biweekly.


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