TOP 3 Ways to Transform Your Vehicle Repair Workshop into an Eco-friendly Workshop
A vehicle repair workshop can be a messy and greasy place and might make your client feels uncomfortable and safe. It also deals with hazardous waste which if not managed properly are harmful to the environment particularly our rivers – our main source of drinking water.
In a survey that we have conducted in 2017 and 2018 in Kuala Lumpur, revealed that
- 36% of vehicle repair workshop did not dispose of vehicle spare parts properly;
- 35% did not segregate waste according to categories;
- 32% did not have tanks or containers to store used engine oil; and
- 45% of the workshops were not connected to the sewage system – which means the wastewater was channeled to drains that lead to rivers.
To curb these issues, we highly encourage workshop owners to apply green practices. It is not solely good for the environment, but it will also be a good marketing strategy to corner sustainability for the environment especially when ‘go green’ is the way nowadays. Plus, it is INEXPENSIVE.
Here are TOP 3 greenways:
1. Manage liquid waste properly and prevent them from flowing into the drains
- Don’t mix all types of liquid waste such as oil and solvent. It is difficult to treat and is costlier. What could have been recycled is wasted due to the mixed up. Store each liquid waste in different containers and label them.
- Used engine oil must be stored in a good-condition container to prevent leakage.
- Drip trays must be in place to catch liquids and clean any spills as soon as possible to avoid the liquid from flowing into drains. Prevent any liquid waste especially chemicals from running off into drains. If there is oil spillage, use oil absorbent pads instead of cloth as oil absorbent pads are more efficient and environmental-friendly. Besides that, cloth with used engine oil stains is scheduled waste and most of the mechanic did not dispose of the cloth properly or ends up at drains. Remember, drains are only meant to channel rainwater to rivers. If chemicals enter nearby drains, these chemicals will also be channeled into rivers and cause serious river pollution.
- As for cleaning the workshop, mop or sweep the floor instead of hosing. Hosing the floor can run-off liquid waste into nearby drains which should be avoided for the reason mentioned above.
2. Manage hazardous waste properly
- Many hazardous wastes can be recycled safely and effectively, while other wastes will be treated and disposed of. So, separate your waste accordingly for proper disposal. Mixing of hazardous waste makes the recyclable unrecyclable.
- Lids of all solvent-based chemical containers should be closed at all times to reduce evaporation and unnecessary loss of product. Any hazardous waste should always be kept in a safe place and labeled.
- Workshop owners can also help improve air quality by using less toxic chemicals such as water-based paint and water-based biodegradable strippers, cleaners, and degreasers.
- Recycling is a good way to earn small side income for workshops and you can sell used parts and liquids to authorized vendors.
- Identify recyclable waste and segregate them. Mixing of waste may make them unsuitable for re-use and recycling. Some of the recyclable items are radiator, engine oil and coolant containers, oil, solvents, coolants, and fuel filters.
- Metal parts can also be recycled which include steels and tire rim. Encourage your employees to segregate the metals.
- If you don’t know what to do with empty drums, return them to your supplier.
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On the side note, if you own a workshop in KL or Klang Valley area and would like to be engaged in green practices, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 03 79517 2007. Do also check out our Best Management Practices on Automobile Workshop poster online.