However, whether done by pulling out the hose at home or pulling up to a charity fundraiser, washing vehicles on driveways, parking lots and streets can actually do far more harm than good. Surprised? It's because the dirty water entering storm drains from pavement washing does not undergo treatment before it is discharged.
In fact, a study by the City of Federal Way, Washington, found that residential car washing led to numerous pollutants being released each year into their storm sewer system, including 190 gallons of gasoline, diesel and motor oil; 400 pounds of phosphorus and nitrogen; and 60 pounds of ammonia.
Can we say Yuck? Might as well just wash your car right in your local river, lake or ocean!
Fortunately, we can all make better choices by listening to the knowledge and information from WaterSavers, a consumer awareness campaign from the International Carwash Association (ICA), that is committed to promoting the importance of using eco-friendly car washes that use less fresh water and return clean water back into the environment.
In fact, professional car washes are typically a much greener option for washing vehicles than washing your car in the driveway at home. Washing at home with a garden hose can use more than 60 gallons in as little as five minutes, but most professional car washes treat and recycle water, virtually eliminating waste.
The average homeowner uses 116 gallons of water to wash a car, according to the Mid-America Regional Council, and most commercial car washes use 60% less water for the entire process than a homeowner uses just to rinse the car.
WaterSavers professional car washes actually use only 40 gallons or less of fresh water per car wash – that's less than the typical home washing machine uses per load. Plus, the process then cleans and re-uses the water for future car washes, or it undergoes treatment prior to returning it clean to the environment.
So no more polluting our waterways or wasting precious water by washing your car in your driveway or conducting a car wash fundraiser in a parking lot! Head to WashWithWaterSavers.com to find out much more information and to find a certified location near you (you can also connect with them on Facebook and Twitter as well).
As this summer comes to an end, instead of grabbing a bucket and hose, take your car to a local WaterSavers car wash to help save water, protect aquatic life and preserve the environment.
And, thanks to their generosity, one person will be even more prepared to be eco-friendly this season and beyond, because...
One lucky person will win a WaterSavers Prize Package*!
*Prize Package includes (1) $20 Visa gift card, (1) Pop-Up Trunk Organizer, (1) WaterSavers branded USB Car Charger and (1) Car Vent Clip.
I am working with the International Carwash Association to share these tips. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.