What can I do at home?

Yard Care

  • Don't fertilize or apply weed killers to your lawn before a forecasted rain shower - chemicals will wash away. Only apply recommended amounts.
  • Use slow-release natural fertilizers and low-toxicity pest control products.
  • Sweep or soak up chemical spills on driveways and sidewalks.
  • Bag, mulch, or compost yard waste. Don't sweep leaves, grass, and other debris into the gutter.
  • Select plants and grasses which grow easily in Salem and require less water, fertilizers, and pesticides.
  • Control sprinkler run-off by watering only when necessary, and aim sprinkler heads away from paved surfaces.
  • Sweep your driveway instead of hosing it down.
  • Control erosion. Stabilize exposed soil areas to prevent soil from eroding during rain events. This is particularly important on steep slopes. The most cost-effective choice is to vegetate the area, preferably with a mulch or binder that holds the soils

Vehicle Care

  • Take your vehicle to a car wash, or use non-phosphate, biodegradable detergents.
  • Dry up oil spills or antifreeze into containers and seal them.
  • Drain oil, lubricants, and antifreeze into containers and seal them. Then contact the Fire Administration to find out where to dispose of the chemicals at 540-375-3080.
  • Take used oil, lubricants, and antifreeze to a designated gas station or recycling center for disposal.

Household Care

  • Clean rain gutters frequently
  • Do not rinse paint cans, brushes, detergent pails, or other cleaning containers on your driveway or the street.
  • Firmly seal and store all used chemicals, and dispose of excess material at the designated site given to you by the Fire Administration.

Show All Answers

1. What is stormwater run-off?
2. What can I do at home?
3. How can I educate my employees?
4. Where do Salem’s storm drains empty?
5. Are yard clippings dangerous to put into storm drains?
6. How do I dispose of household hazardous waste / chemicals, etc?
7. What problems can stormwater run-off lead too?
8. What is a TMDL?