Maori wording

Washing your Car

Car Wash Pollutants

Runoff from washing your car can contain heavy metals (from brakes), oil, dirt and grease. When we wash our cars in the driveway or on the street, these pollutants flow into the gutter, through the stormwater network and build up in our streams and rivers where they can kill fish, insects and plants.
Check out our tips for washing your car:


Top Tips
  1. Wash it on the grass:
    Grass acts as a natural filter, trapping the pollutants on the surface and allowing clean water to filter through the soil below. Use a bucket, rather than a hose, to minimise water use and runoff.

  2. Take your car to a commercial car wash:
    At commercial car washes the waste water is contained and disposed of to the sewer. In some cases, the wash water may be cleaned and reused with the final rinse using fresh water.

  3. Careful Car Maintenance:
    Clean up oil spills, fix leaking cars, recycle used motor oil and use drip pans to catch engine oil when repairing cars. Used automotive oil can be taken to be recycled at Domestic Hazardous Waste Drop-offs located at most waste transfer stations.