Growing up, Ray Egner always had an entrepreneurial mindset. Once he started his career as a full-time firefighter, he quickly found himself with a lot of downtime on his days off. And his hobbies were starting to get more expensive. So, his decision to start a small business seemed perfectly natural to him. He’d always had an interest in the power washing industry, so he dedicated two years to learning the trade. He started to build his equipment inventory and grow Carolina Power Washing into the business it is today!
We’re excited for you to get to know Ray, the (fire)man behind the business, a little better today!
Tell us a little about yourself.
I grew up in Waldorf, Maryland, a suburb of Washington, DC. Lindsey and I have been married for almost 6 years and we have two boys – Luke is 3, and Jake is 1. I love anything with an engine, drinking coffee, and eating tacos.
Before starting Carolina Power Washing, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?
I have had lots of jobs over the years – I have built motorcycles and even worked as an auto mechanic for a few years.
How do you balance your job at CPW with the Fire Department?
When I’m at the firehouse, all my attention, thoughts, and actions are related to my responsibilities at the fire department. That creates a challenge when customers call requesting estimates or have questions. I think most people understand, though, that as a firefighter operated business, we can’t be available 24/7.
Being a firefighter has allowed for an easy transition into the industry.
What’s your favorite part about Carolina Power Washing?
I love getting feedback from customers about how awesome their property looks after we cleaned it, or how easy we made the process of getting a quote/scheduling the work to be done, and then showing up on time and doing a top notch job. That’s really what our goal is — giving the customer an amazing experience.
What do you find most challenging about your job?
Trying to answer the phone every time it rings can be a challenge. Sometimes I’m on top of a roof, climbing a ladder, or in the middle of washing a house and my hands are wet. So occasionally I miss a call, but I’m always quick to call the customer back ASAP.
What’s something people might not know about you?
I can hear an engine running and tell what kind of vehicle it is coming from. I didn’t start drinking coffee until I was 25, and now I’m making up for lost time by drinking a ridiculous amount in a day.
What’s your favorite place to hang out?
On our front porch with my kids playing in the yard.
Tell us about your favorite assignments and customer experiences.
We have done some really cool large projects over the past few years that have challenged us. But what I really enjoy the most is seeing our repeat customers every year or so and catching up with them about what is new in their life and how they have been doing.