Bud’s Dry Cleaning is Drier than Ever

Last Updated: 6/5/2017

Bud’s Dry Cleaning replaced inefficient water-cooling equipment with an efficient water recycling and cooling system nearly two years ago, lowering its water use by an estimated 3.6 million gallons per year. That’s the amount of water typically used each year by 24 Roseville households of four.

“When you think about dry cleaning, ‘water’ might not be the first thing that comes to mind,” Sharon Sargent, office manager at Bud’s Cleaners, told us. “But water is one of our largest costs. Of course, we use it in the laundry. But most of the water we use is to cool our dry-cleaning machine, which is about the size of a Volkswagen.”

“With our old dry-cleaning machine,” Sharon continued, “water was ‘one and done.’ We used it once to cool the equipment then we disposed of it. But our new dry-cleaning machine came with a chiller, which allows us to reuse water to cool the equipment. We figure that’s saving us about $1,000 per month in water costs alone. This is helpful since most of our other costs continue to rise and the cost of the new machine was over $125,000.”

“It’s not easy running a small business, particularly these days,” Sharon said. Bud’s Cleaners has been operating for 57 years in Roseville. It’s a local landmark. There are other dry cleaners in town, but none have the longevity of Bud’s. She is grateful her water bill has declined. So are we.

As our recent drought stretched into its fourth year, David Kitchell, Bud’s owner, went to Environmental Utilities’ website looking for rebates for water-efficient equipment, Sharon explained. “We were going to have to replace our dry-cleaning machine anyway, so David was wondering if he could get some financial help for choosing a model that saved water.”

“I feel the city really looks out for its small businesses,” Sharon said. “Our job is to make your clothes look as good as the day you bought them. The people at Environmental Utilities are helping us do our job better, and at a lower cost.”

“The water specialist we worked with made it easy. He was really nice to work with. He took the time to understand how we use water, and he filed a rebate application on our behalf. We got our rebate check for $2,010 within a month after the new equipment was installed.”

Sharon urged other small businesses to reach out to Environmental Utilities to see what rebates are available. “They’ll come out and give you a free onsite evaluation of your water use, which was really helpful. We all need to use water wisely. It’s such a precious resource.”