Some British Have Never Personally Washed Their Own Cars

June 11, 2015

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. chore / tʃɔr / (n.) – a task that is done regularly
Example: His weekly chore is to wash the family van.

2. hire / haɪər / (v.) – to give someone a job in exchange for money (salary)
Example: We hired Ben as our driver.

3. build up /ˈbɪldˌʌp / (v.) – to add up or increase over time
Example: We should regularly change the car seat covers to prevent dirt from building up.

4. wear down / ˈwer ˈdaʊn / (v.) – to gradually become damaged
Example: Car tires can wear down after six years.

5. barrier /ˈbær i ər / (n.) – a thing that prevents something from moving from one point to another
Example: Sun shades serve as the car’s barrier against sunlight.


Read the text below.
According to a survey, a number of people in the United Kingdom have never personally washed their own cars.

The survey, conducted by car leasing company OSV, involved 1,100 adults in the United Kingdom. According to its results, 75% of the women and 31% of the men have never washed their cars on their own. The survey also found that only 12% of the participants regularly wash their cars.

The results of the survey imply that fewer people wash their cars by themselves. OSV spokesperson Andrew Kirkley [kerk-LEE] said that this decline may have resulted from people having bigger cars but less time to clean them. And unlike before, kids today seem uninterested in doing the chore to earn extra money. Thus, car owners opt to put their cars through an automated machine or hire a group who is willing to do the job at a cheaper price.

One importance of washing one’s car is that it maintains the car’s pleasing appearance. A study shows that other than cleanliness, washing cars also protects the car’s coating.  Not washing the car causes dirt to build up, which can wear down the car’s paint. Paint can also be removed when the dirt is mixed with rain and other pollutants. In addition, things like sap and bird droppings can also ruin the car’s paint. 

Other than washing, waxing is also important because doing so creates a protective barrier between the paint and outside elements. A waxed car is thus protected against sap, insects, bird droppings, and other things.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A 

·         What are your thoughts about people who do not keep their cars clean?
·         What can be the other reasons why people do not wash their cars by themselves?

Discussion B

·         What are some other chores that people used to do but no longer do on their own?
·         Do you think machines have made people lazy? Why or why not?

June 11, 2015