Spring is nearly here, bringing warm weather and more chances to get outside and enjoy some fresh air and blue skies. But while you’re out and about, remember that there’s one reason why washing your car at home isn’t a good option for your spring cleaning schedule:
Driveway car washing is a substantial source of water pollution
According to groups like the Environmental Protection Agency, Clean Water Consortium, and a wide range of state-level agencies, driveway washing is a devastating homeowner practice that leads to lasting ecological damage in local water bodies.
When vehicle owners soap up their cars, they generally use one of several varieties of car wash detergents, all of which are generally rich in surfactants, sodium or disodium phosphate, and other detergents. When the car is ready, these compounds are rinsed off together and sent straight down the driveway and into the nearest storm sewer or drainage ditch—along with any brake dust, wax, or motor oil that might be mixed in.
These artificial phosphates are a powerful nutrient and growth stimulator for algae, resulting in huge algae blooms in ponds and lakes that block out sunlight for the aquatic plants below and rapidly deplete oxygen from the water – oxygen that local fish and marine wildlife need to survive.
Once driveway car wash detergents get into storm sewers or drainage routes they flush straight down into the nearest stream, river, or lake. Huge die-offs are a result, and the algae that’s left behind is ugly, slimy to the touch, and stinks when it washes up and dries out on beaches and river bends.
The problem of driveway washing and water pollution has gotten so bad that many municipalities have run public service announcements and information campaigns to turn residents off from washing their cars at home, encouraging the use of professional car wash facilities like Tommy’s Express, where all detergents and wash runoff are safely captured and transported via sanitary sewer to a local water treatment plant.
At Tommy’s Express, 0% of our detergents and cleaning products end up in local waterways, which makes us the greenest, fastest solution for your automotive spring cleaning. Visit one of our express car wash locations today and come see for yourself!