The Most Water Efficient Way to Wash Your Car

Professional Car Washing and Detailing magazine recently excitedly reported the results of an investigation by News 8 in Austin, Texas, into water consumption associated with various ways of washing your car:

A self-serve carwash uses about 17 gallons of water (depending on the nozzle; an IBA wash, found at a gas station can use between 20 and 40 gallons; a full-serve wash can use up to 60 gallons; and a driveway washing can use over 100.

My staff conducted its own independent investigation, and concluded that not washing the Inkstain Honda Civic at all uses zero gallons.


  1. If you use a bucket instead of letting your hose run, you can wash your car in your driveway with very little water.

    Also, if I remember correctly Austin has regulations to recycle water from car washes.

    Since my white car now looks beige, I guess you can determine which method I use 😉

  2. Or, to elaborate on David’s point, I pay nothing (neither cash nor lost opportunity cost of my valuable time) by not washing my car at all.

    Economics strikes again!

Comments are closed.