WINCHESTER — Valley Car Wash uses water, but it also uses the sun.

On Tuesday afternoon, the business at 126 Cole Lane off Berryville Pike held a ribbon-cutting for its 71-kilowatt, roof-mounted solar array — the largest commercial-scale solar installation in Frederick County.

Owner Ned Browning of Winchester said the car wash has been incorporating green technology for years, including water conservation, pollution prevention and biodegradable soap options. Adding clean solar energy was “the next level,” he said.

The solar array went into operation in April and is expected to pay for itself in five years. According to Browning, the installation cost about $176,000, with roughly 25% covered by a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The

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