It’s not illegal to wash your car in Edmonds! It is, however, a violation of federal, state, and City regulations to let car wash water flow into a storm drain.
Car wash water and rinse water contain a mixture of detergents, oils, heavy metals, and other pollutants that we are washing off of our vehicles. Since stormwater in Edmonds flows directly to our creeks, lakes, and Puget Sound, the soapy, polluted water can impact aquatic plants and animals.
Even biodegradable soaps can harm our local water bodies – soaps decrease the surface tension of water and lower the oxygen level. And just like standard soaps, biodegradable soaps can injure fish gills and skin.
Car Wash Kits are available to Edmonds organizations for free! By checking out a Car Wash Kit from the City, fund-raising groups can help keep harmful soaps and toxic metals from running into the Puget Sound. The kits are designed to divert dirty, soapy water to the sanitary sewer system or grassy area where it can be better managed. To reserve a kit, call City of Edmonds Engineering at 425-771-0220.
Remember that there are a number of options when it comes to washing your car! You can borrow a Car Wash Kit, wash your car on the grass, take it to an authorized commercial car wash or use a waterless car wash product.
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