As we move into the fall season, the excitement and anticipation for holiday festivities and special days begin. Here is one more date to remember: October is Car Care Month as recognized by the The Car Care Council.

Yes, a whole month! Why? Because maintenance and safety are important to get your car ready for the colder climate ahead and for those road trips over Thanksgiving. Have you checked your tires and their tread depth? This tip is very important with those icy conditions ahead. Alas, a well-maintained car also means fewer emissions and better air quality. With that, here are my tips for the winter season.

  • Maintain, maintain, maintain!
    Getting your regular service and a tune-up, according to your owner’s manual, can help with gas mileage – by as much as 40 percent – and that means fewer emissions into the air.

  • Marie Kondo your car every few weeks.
    What’s that you say? Clean out your car periodically and get rid of stuff in the trunk space that adds weight. You may still be packing all those beach and picnic chairs from the summer, or soccer and baseball gear, or even stuff from that recent Home Deport run. It’s estimated that reducing the weight of your vehicle by as little as 10 percent can improve fuel economy by as much as 6 percent.

  • Check your tires.
    Today, there are eco-friendly tires available with synthetic rubber blends that are designed to increase gas mileage and reduce air emissions. If you need new tires, these are worth looking into. If you live in colder climates with icy conditions, then winter tires are a must. If your tires are in good shape, make sure the pressure is checked so that you get the best fuel efficiency and maintain the safest car possible.

  • Double Check those Brakes and Car Battery.
    As the weather starts to get cooler, yes even in California, it’s time to get those brakes checked and professionally cleaned, if needed. If your battery is more than three years old, consider replacing it. No one wants to be stuck on the road after the office white elephant gift exchange party!

  • Take your car to the car wash.
    Maintain the paint and appearance of your car and be kind to the planet. Regular express car washes in between your full detail helps maintain a clean car. Washing your car at home is a big no, no. Here’s why: The water running from your at-home car wash is most likely full of gasoline, exhaust residue, and oil. The wash stream goes into storm drains and further into streams and rivers, bringing a lot of pollution into our waterways. Commercial car washes drain wastewater into sewer systems, where it is treated before being released into waterways. Choose an eco -friendly express car wash, and you and your car will benefit greatly.

At my company, we designed our new Bliss car washes to use less water and use eco-friendly products and processes throughout the cleaning cycles. Our “reclamation” system treats and transforms water into a renewable resource, resulting in a 70 percent reduction in water usage. Our cleaning solutions are exclusively biodegradable and earth-friendly, and we use low-energy consuming machinery.

And while we are working to save water here in California, we’re donating fresh water to people in Africa through our work with the nonprofit Wells Bring Hope in its mission to bring safe water to rural villages in Niger, West Africa.

I am a car guy! I’ve got a passion for cars. But my love of our environment means I’ll always focus on the best earth-friendly practices I know and with these tips, you can too.

I hope you join me in celebrating Fall Car Care Month this October!

To read my previous blogs, please click here.

David Delrahim is a businessman, philanthropist and CEO of BLISS car wash.