Anything we use in our home or cars, like paint, pesticides, fertilzers, cleaners, and motor oil can wind up in the street and contribute to storm water pollution. Fortunatley it doesn't take much to prevent pollution.
Paints, solvents, adhesives, debris and toxic materials from home repair and remodeling projects are often swept, blown or washed into the storm drain system and go untreated into washes and finally the Mojave River. By following a few simple steps, you can prevent pollution.
- Use water-based paints whenever possible. Look for products labeled "latex" or "cleans with water."
- Avoid cleaning brushes or rinsing containers in the street or gutter. For water-based paint, rinse them in the sink. For oil-based paint, clean them with thinner which can be filtered and reused.
- Never dump paint or paint-related products in the trash, gutter or a storm drain. Take them to a household hazardous waste collection site to be recycled. Paint stripping residue, chips and dust from marine paints and paints containing lead or tributyl tin are hazardous wastes. Sweep them up and take them in a sealed container to a household hazardous waste collection site.
Household Hazardous Waste Information
Constructing and Remodeling
- Schedule grading and excavation projects for dry weather.
- Practice source reduction by ordering only the amount of material needed to complete the project.
- Use recycled and recyclable materials whenever possible.
- Keep all construction debris away from the street, gutter and storm drains.
Construction BMP Pamphlet
Outdoor Vehicle Washing
Outdoor vehicle washing has the potential to result in high loads of metals, and hydocarbons during dry weather conditions, as the detergent-rich water used to wash the grime off vehicles flows into the environment.
- Shake floor mats into the trash can or vacuum to clean. Do not shake over ground.
- If using cleaners(such as acid based wheel cleaners) use a rag to wipe them on and off. Do not rinse them off with water.
- If possible divert runoff water from automobile washing to a grassy area large enough to contain and allow complete infiltration.
- Choose soaps, cleaners or detergents labeled "nontoxic", "Phosphate free", or "biodegradable". They are safest for the environment.
By complying with these best management practices, you will make a significant contribution toward keeping pollutants out of the receiving waters.
For additional information on best management practices that help the environment, please contact the Town of Apple Valley at (760) 240-7000.
Tips for Pool Maintenance
Swimming pools and spas must be maintained properly to guarantee that chemicals don't enter the streets, storm drains or sanitary sewers. Further, discharging of pool water into the storm drain or sanitary sewer is prohibited.
Acceptable and Preferred Method of Disposal
When it is necessary to replace your pool water you must either: 1. Discharge of the water onto your own property, or 2. Contract with a company to pump out and dispose of the water properly. When discharging your swimming pool and spa water onto your own property, you must treat your water prior to disposal. Please adhere to the following tips:
- The chlorine levels must be reduced so as not exceed 0.1 mg/l (parts per million).
- The pH must be between 6.5 and 8.5.
- The water must be free of any unusual coloration, dirt or algae.
- There is no discharge of any acid cleaning wastes.
How to Know if You're Following the Standards
You can find out how much chlorine is in your water by using a pool testing kit. Excess chlorine can be removed by discontinuing the use of chlorine for a few days prior to discharge or by purchasing dechlorinating chemicals from a local pool supply company or hardware store. Always make sure to follow the instructions that come with any products you use.
Recycled vs. Recyclables
There are two types of recycled materials when manufacturers produce recycled content products; pre-consumer and post-consumer. Pre-consumer is material recycled internally at manufacturing plants. Post-consumer material is when material is returned by consumers through recycling programs to the manufacturing process. When buying recycled products look for the highest percentage of "post-consumer" recycled content you can find.
Also look at the following labels to determine the products recyclable statues.