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Car Maintenance

Make Green Choices with Car Maintenance

Leaking oil and other fluids from your car wash into storm drains that flow directly into the river. So does soap from washing your vehicle. Excess phosphorous from soap can harm water quality and aquatic life. 

Reduce these harmful substances in runoff and you'll help prevent harm to natural habitats, wildlife and the river.

What You Can Do...

  • Check for leaks. Look at the ground where your car was parked.

  • If you find evidence of leaking fluids, have it fixed.

  • Until then, keep a drip pan under car. Empty the collected fluids into a tightly sealed and labeled container and recycle it.

  • Consider using alternative transportation: carpool, bus, bicycle or walk

  • For the least environmental impact, go to a car wash that treats and recycles wash water. Most car washes do this but check to confirm. If you take your car to be washed at a charity event, make sure they have a storm drain catchment kit to trap oil and other harmful chemicals.

  • If you wash your car at home, do it on a grass or gravel surface to help filter the soapy water and grime. Be careful not to drive over tree roots, though. Use only earth-friendly (phosphate-free) soaps and cleaners for your car. Conserve water. Make sure your hose has an on/off switch or nozzle. If you use a bucket of soap and water, pour unused cleaning solutions down the sink so that it can be treated.

  • Join others taking action to make our river safe again for swimming and fishing!