Washing your car yourself is much cheaper than going to a car wash. But hand washing on your own property has its pitfalls. There are restrictions and even bans, which are sometimes punished with high penalties in the catalog of fines. However, there is no clear ban on car washing. We’ll explain below what’s allowed and what’s forbidden when it comes to car washing on your doorstep.

Whether on public property on the street or on private property, the problem with washing your car at home is the often aggressive cleaners that come into play. Environmentally harmful residues on the car itself, such as oil or tar, can also come off when washed. All of this can end up in the groundwater and harm the environment. The so-called Water Resources Act stipulates that groundwater must be protected. The problem: This protection of groundwater is implemented differently from community to community. That’s why there are no uniform regulations regarding car washing at home. However, since potentially hazardous substances are definitely not allowed to enter the groundwater, comprehensive car washing is usually not permitted on your own property. At least not if the dirty water that accumulates can seep away.

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The fact is: Car washing is generally prohibited on unpaved surfaces such as lawns or gravel areas. If the surface on which the car is to be washed is sealed and a connection to the sewer system ensures that the dirty water reaches the sewage treatment plant, then hand washing the vehicle at home is sometimes permitted. In many communities, however, cars can only be cleaned with clear water. In other areas, a special drain is also required, which makes cleaning your own property almost impossible.

In any case, car owners should always be on the safe side and check the local public order office website online to find out what is allowed and what is not. However, extensive engine washing or the use of chemical cleaners should generally be avoided at home. In most cases this can be done on your own property:

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The respective city or municipal regulations state whether or not cars can be washed on your own property. Anyone who doesn’t comply can sometimes face high fines. Especially if environmentally harmful substances get into the groundwater, the penalties can range from 25 to 100,000 euros, depending on the federal state and the severity of the offense.

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There are also options for washing your car yourself away from the usual car washes. In self-service car washes, every vehicle owner has a wide range of options for self-washing. The advantage: Not only are these wash boxes usually built on a sealed floor, they are also often equipped with their own wastewater systems as well as special collection and filter devices that help remove dirt particles and residues from the used water before it is used enters the sewage system. Comprehensive, gentle and environmentally friendly cleaning is possible here. But be careful: often only the cleaning products that are distributed at self-service car washes can be used.

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In conclusion, it can be said that your own car can be pre-cleaned optimally and in peace and quiet at home. Vacuuming the interior, cleaning the upholstery and cleaning the fittings – all of this is easily possible. For an extensive, complete cleaning with appropriate washing substances, it is better to make do with the self-service washing area. The polishing at the end for an all-round shiny result can then be done on your own driveway.

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