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Practice Good Car Care
Remember you’re not just washing your car;
you’re putting pollutants into our water bodies.

What’s the issue?
Did you know there are over four million vehicles in Southeast Michigan? Practicing good car care means you are helping protect our lakes and streams. How does caring for your car affect our lakes and streams? Storm drains found in our streets and roadside ditches lead to our lakes and streams. So, if dirty water from washing our cars or motor fluids are dumped or washed into the storm drain, it pollutes our local waterways.

Make a date. Car-wash facilities treat their dirty water before discharging it to our lakes and streams. So, make a date to take your car to a car wash.

Wash it—on the grass. If you wash your car at home, consider washing it on the lawn. Or, if you can't use the lawn, try to direct the dirty water towards the lawn and away from the storm drain.

Minimize it. Reduce the amount of soap you use or wash your car with plain water.

Maintain it. Keep your vehicle properly tuned and use the owner's manual to guide decisions about how often it is necessary to change fluids such as oil and antifreeze.

Take advantage of business expertise. Consider taking your vehicle to the shop to have the oil and other fluids changed. These businesses have the ability to recycle the used materials and clean up accidental spills.


Recycle. If you choose to change your oil and other fluids yourself, label the waste containers. Then, take them to your community's household hazardous waste collection day or to a business that accepts used oil. Never dump used oil, antifreeze, or other fluids on the ground or down the storm drain. (For more information on the proper disposal of vehicle wastes see the Residents tip page)

Soak it up. Use kitty litter promptly to absorb small amounts of spilled vehicle fluids. Then sweep it into a bag and throw it in the trash.

Do it under cover. Whenever possible, perform vehicle maintenance in a well-ventilated, but covered location (e.g., garage). This minimizes the potential for rainfall to wash those inevitable spills and drips into our lakes and streams.


Simple Steps to Keep Our Water Clean

Fertilize sparingly and caringly

Choose Earth Friendly Landscaping

Practice Good Car Care

Properly Dispose of Household Waste

Be a Responsible Waterfront Owner




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© 2005-2009 Genesee County Drain Commission
For More Information, please contact:
Genesee County Drain Commission