City Services

What You Can Do

You have the power to make a difference!  By making small changes in your daily habits, you can have a big impact on the health of your pets, children and environment.  Here are ten ways you can help:

  • Properly service and maintain your vehicle and when possible, drive less
  • Properly use, store and dispose of hazardous household materials
  • Reduce impervious surfaces on your property
  • Scoop your pet waste, bag it, and place it in the trash
  • Use a commercial car wash
  • Use professional carpet cleaning, maintenance, and pressure washing services that don't dump their wash water into our storm drains
  • Practice natural yard and lawn care
  • Plant trees
  • Properly service and maintain your septic system and drain field
  • Use little to no synthetic fertilizers or pesticides



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What is a rain garden?
It's a landscaped, strategically placed, depressed area that is planted with native vegetation to soak up rain water.
How do I build a rain garden?

We have provided a great manual in the document section above with everything you need to know.  We are also hosting rain garden workshops to provide you with hands-on tips and specific design ideas for your site

What is natural yard care?
Natural yard care involves five main components:
  • 1)  Building healthy soil
  • 2)  Planting right for your site
  • 3)  Practicing smart watering
  • 4)  Using little to no synthetic fertilizers and pesticides
  • 5)  Practicing natural lawn care
How do I practice natural yard care?

Follow each step in the Five Easy Steps Guide above from King County and make your piece of the planet a healthier place to live.  We also offer FREE yard care classes that help you learn these important techniques from regional experts.  Visit our natural yard care page to learn more.

Why use a public car wash?

Washing  your car at home sends pollutants from your car (oil, grease, fuel, heavy metals, nutrients, etc.) into our storm drains and directly into our rivers, lakes and wetlands.  Also, according to the City of Bothell Municipal Code Chapter 18.04.260, it is illegal to discharge any pollutants into the public drainage system.  These pollutants include the soap and chemicals that are used to clean your vehicle.  Please use a commercial car wash, a waterless car wash product, or divert your wash water to a permeable surface (grass, gravel).

What can I do to keep my car wash fund raising event from polluting our water?

Car washes can be a popular way to raise money for local organizations, but if not managed properly they can allow harmful pollutants (oil, heavy metals, fuel, nutrients, soap, etc.)  to enter our streams via the storm drains.  Try these alternatives instead:

  •  Host your event at a public car wash facility- most facilities will rent a stall at a discount to local charity organizations
  • Sell discounted car washing tickets-organizations like the Puget Sound Car Wash Association or Brown Bear will sell the tickets to you at a substantial discount which you can sell for any amount you wish 
  • Use waterless car washing products-you can purchase kits that will clean up to 400 cars and use little to no water
  • Divert your wash water to a permeable surface- if you would still like to host a car washing event on pavement then divert the wash water to grass or gravel, or receive permission and discharge the water to the sanitary sewer system 
Why should I scoop my pet waste?

You have to think of pet waste as raw sewage, because that's exactly what it is.  Pet waste contains very harmful organisms such as Roundworms, Giardia, and E. coli which can be transmitted directly to humans.  These organisms can remain on your lawn for as long as four years threatening the safety of your pets and children.  The only way to remove the danger is to pick up your pet waste and place it in the trash.  Check out our new video.

What is LID?
LID stands for low impact development techniques.  These are techniques that can be used in building, construction, and development to reduce the impacts to ourselves and our environment.
Why should I maintain my vehicle?

Maintaining your vehicle is a good idea for many reasons:

1) Your vehicle will run more efficiently which saves you money at the pump

2) Proper maintenance extends the life of your vehicle 

3) Improperly managed vehicles often leak oil, fluids, harmful emissions and heavy metals which make roads unsafe and pollute our air, land, and water resources.

Visit our vehicle leaks page for more information

How do I properly dispose of hazardous materials?

There are several stationary sites that accept hazardous waste in King and Snohomish County as well as a mobile unit which visits several sites in the area.  For more information visit the King County site, or the Snohomish County site.

How do I dispose of my electronics?

Washington has a new electronics law that requires manufactures to take back certain electronics at no cost to the consumer.  For more information visit our recycling page.