When it rains, stormwater carries oil and other toxic pollutants from vehicles directly into our local lakes, rivers and bays. These pollutants mainly originate from vehicle leaks. Regular vehicle maintenance can prevent oil and other fluids from ending up in our waterways where they will harm wildlife, people and habitat.

Cleaning your car is another important part of vehicle maintenance, but make sure you use a commercial car wash or wash it on your lawn.

When your car leaks oil, transmission fluid or other fluids, it can be a sign of larger problems. Fixing car leaks can also help prevent inconvenient breakdowns and more expensive repairs.


Fix vehicle leaks

The Department of Ecology's Don't Drip & Drive program can help you diagnose a leak, get your leak checked, and learn preventative maintenance tips to take care of your vehicle.

Use a commercial car wash

Washing your car results in waste water full of dirt, road grime, oils, metals, and soap. Washing your car on the street or in your driveway will send these pollutants directly into storm drains. Commercial car washes recycle waste water before sending it to the waste water treatment plant, keeping our waterways clean. If you have to wash your car at home, make sure to wash it on your lawn with phosphorus-free soap.

Dispose of chemicals safely

Never dump vehicle waste or other toxic chemicals into storm or sewer drains. Be sure to properly dispose of used motor oil using these instructions. The Whatcom County Disposal of Toxics Facility accepts other hazardous waste.

Vehicle Maintenance Resources