Did you know that when we hand wash cars on a paved surface, all the detergents, chemicals, and dirt coming off the car head straight to local waterways? Impervious surfaces such as blacktop, concrete, or cement do not allow water to infiltrate them; instead, they usher water to the nearest ditch or storm drain. Therefore, moving where one washes a car, we can help improve water quality!
Washing cars on grass instead of using an impervious surface allows the grass to help filter out containments before they make their way to a stream! Grass helps to slow down detergents, dirt, and chemicals coming off cars, many times using them. When we wash our cars on the grass, we can eliminate a scheduled watering for the lawn for that week.
Easier yet, head to a car wash! Car washing facilities were built with water on their mind. Many car washing facilities will recycle the water before sending it to wastewater facilities, where water is treated before being released into the rivers!
Take that extra step and refrain from washing cars on driveways to help improve water quality in our rivers. This simple step can leave both your car and our rivers cleaner!