The Challenges of Change
In today's world, we face many changes especially environmentally. As never before, all of us are required – both our in our personal surroundings and in our communities – to pay attention to how we care for the environment, as well as the legacy we leave behind for generations to follow. We are challenged to change the way we live for the sake of creating a sustainable world and with all Nations concerned about climate change, the Western Carwash Association wants you to think about how we wash our cars and, more specifically, the impact home car washing has on our declining water resources and the environmental pollution this practice creates.
The Dirty Little Secret of Home Car Washing
Most car washing is being done at home with a hose and a bucket of soap in the driveway, but washing vehicles in driveways or parking lots create polluted wastewater. When allowed to run freely down the driveway into the gutters, this polluted wastewater empties straight into the storm drain and straight into our community wetlands, rivers, lakes, and oceans. If consumers only knew and understood that the polluted wastewater they create from home or parking lot car washes enters the storm drain and flows into our waterways, most consumers would willingly adapt to change by washing their cars on their lawns using a trigger nozzle, or choose to use a professional car wash.
Professional Car Washing Offers an Ideal Alternative
There is a myth believed by the public that professional car washers are water wasters and not the most environmentally friendly. This myth holds no water. Professional car washes are equipped with high-pressure, low flow nozzles that precisely control the amount of water used on a car and numerous studies indicate professional car washers use LESS water than home washing and DO NOT contributing to stormwater pollution. The majority of consumers are unaware that many professional carwashes recycle their water and reuse it multiple times in the carwash process and also treat the wastewater prior to releasing into the SEWER system.
How Western Carwash Association Members Are Protecting the Environment
WCA members have the option to participate in The Western Carwash Association Water Conservation Certification Program (WCA/WCCP). This program is a tool for car wash operators to maximize water conservation efforts at their car wash facilities and to educate consumers and water utility companies as to the benefits of professional car washing as it pertains to water conservation and protecting the environment.
Accepting the Challenge
When we start to understand the impact we have on our community's waterways, we will start taking the steps in improving our waterways. Please use the WaterWise brochure to educate your local officials and ask for their support in educating consumers about the pollution they create each and every time they wash their car in their driveway or at a charity event not located at a professional car wash facility. There is a tool included in the brochure to help you determine how much pollution is being created by residential car washing.
Now is the time for each and every one of us to make a conscientious effort to accept the "Challenge of Change". How we care for the environment will be the legacy we leave behind for generations to follow. It's up to us, now – not tomorrow!
WCA Owner/Operator Members
Promote your water management and conservation efforts by participating in the WCA Water Conservation Certification Program (WCA/WCCP). The purpose of this part of the WaterWise program is to educate water utility companies and consumers as to the benefits of professional car washing as it pertains to water conservation and protecting the environment.
Owner/operators have two programs to choose from: Water Conservation Certification Program or Commercial Car Wash Best Management Recognition. Both programs offer all WCA Members the opportunity to promote their car wash as being WaterWise.
For more information download the WCA/WCCP application to select your WaterWise program.