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Many motorists do it in front of their house, yet the fine is 450 euros

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If spring was not particularly mild this year, the first days of summer marked the return of sunny days. And inevitably, the desire to spruce up your car after the spring rains arises. However, many motorists are unaware that the simple act of washing their vehicle in front of their home can expose them to heavy penalties.

A prohibited and punished practice

Since 1979, cleaning a vehicle on public roads has been strictly prohibited in France. This ban also applies if you simply wash your car in front of your garage, your gate or in the street adjacent to your home. The sanction for this offense is far from being trivial, as our colleagues from L'internaute explain: a fine of 450 euros can be imposed on offenders.

Worse, if the authorities notice that the washing water contains polluting products (engine oil, hydrocarbons, detergents) and that they are released into the ground, the sanctions are even more serious. In this case, the person responsible faces a prison sentence of up to 2 years and a fine of 75,000 euros. These sanctions are imposed at any time of the year, whether in summer or winter.

What is legal?

Faced with these risks, we would tend to advise you to turn to more ecological and legal solutions. Professional washing stations are equipped to recover and treat wastewater – and they consume much less water than washing at home. At home, we consume around 300 liters compared to 50 in a high pressure station. Of course, it will cost a little more but it's better for the environment.

Another alternative is to use dry cleaning services. or “without water”. These methods are increasingly popular and have the merit of being more environmentally friendly. That said, it is not always easy to find such a station in its geographical surroundings.

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Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116