Car Care Products

More than 25% of us change our car’s oil ourselves. Waste motor oil, antifreeze, brake fluid, battery acid, gasoline, car wax, engine cleaners, degreasers, radiator flushes, and rust preventatives contain toxic chemicals. When waste oil is poured down storm drains it can flow directly into streams, lakes and Puget Sound. Over 90% of the used oil applied to roads for dust control actually leaves the road surface on dust particles or in surface water runoff. Used oil placed in the garbage can seep through the landfill to contaminate groundwater.



The only recommended way to dispose of oil is to put it into a sturdy container and take it to your neighborhood automotive garage or oil recycling center. Recycling one gallon of used oil yields two and one-half quarts of high quality lubricating oil, the same amount produced from 42 gallons of crude oil. Call 1-800-RECYCLE for recycling locations near your home. Disposing of antifreeze is also a problem. Antifreeze contains ethylene glycol which is poisonous to fish, wildlife and people. Many cats and dogs have died after drinking the sweet tasting puddles of antifreeze left on driveways. Do not dispose of antifreeze down storm drains, instead ask you local service station to add the liquid to their used anti-freeze storage drum. If your household is connected to a central sewer system, call your wastewater utility for specific guidance in disposing of anti-freeze.

Other Car Care Concerns

Take a few minutes to examine your car carefully for leaks in oil, fuel, brake, and cooling systems. It is important to correct leaks quickly, even a small leak over a long period can make a substantial contribution of hazardous wastes to the environment. While you’re at it, have your emission system checked for efficient operation. When washing your car, use soap or clear water rather than detergents to minimize runoff into storm drains.

Taking Action