Let’s face it the automotive business is not typically thought of as an environmentally friendly (Green) endeavor. We would respectfully disagree given the advances in technology and fuel economy, however, there is always room for improvement. With that in mind we have tried to focus on how we can reduce our environmental footprint in our day to day operations.
In the past things like waste oil was shipped off for disposal and used oil filters were placed into dumpsters with their final resting place being a landfill. We have elected to partner with Universal Environmental Services that has one of the only SCDHEC permitted oil recycling facilities in the State of South Carolina. All of our waste oil (about 3-400 gallons per week) is picked up and is taken to Universal’s recycling plant for re-use. The used oil filters are crushed to remove as much remaining oil as possible. The filters are then shredded to recover the metal parts for recycling and the remaining oil soaked filter media is used for power generation.
The same company also takes care of our used anti-freeze fluids. We try to capture all of the anti-freeze and keep it in an SCDHEC approved containment system until Universal Environmental can collect it for transport to their recycling facilities.
We regret that we cannot accept used oil, filters or other automotive fluids from Do-It-Yourselfers (DIY’s) however; the Beaufort County Recycling centers can take all of these items. We encourage everyone to use these facilities and help keep our local environment and waters as clean as possible.
Whenever we sell a tire we are required to collect an excise tax which is sent to the State of South Carolina at the end of every month. The used tires are picked up every other week by an SCDHEC licensed Tire Hauler (which charge us) by the tire to transport the tires to rubber recycling facilities and /or disposal facilities based on the demand for the rubber content.
In early 2016, we upgraded and converted all of our interior & exterior fluorescent lighting to energy efficient LED in partnership with Low Country LED Lighting . As a result we have reduced our electrical consumption by approximately %20 and our shops are much brighter.
We are converting our hot water heaters to the Marathon high efficiency units that use less power. They are more expensive than conventional hot water heaters but we believe they are worth it in the long run with more efficient energy consumption. The old heaters? They have served us well but they are headed to be recycled.
Every wonder what happens to the worn out or broken parts of your faithful automobile once we have fixed it up? Some complex parts such as starters & alternators, computers can be returned as Cores to be rebuilt by the manufacturers. Previously everything would accumulate until there was no more room and then it went out to the dumpster. We have begun a systematic recycling program to separate Ferrous (Iron & Steel) and Non-Ferrous (Copper, Aluminum, Lead) metals and we send them to Southern Metals to for recycling. We remove as much non-recyclable material such as rubber hoses and every couple of weeks.
All worn out batteries are securely stored on site and once a week our battery suppliers: Interstate and AC/Delco pick them up for recovery and re-use of the metals inside.
We are working in-house to reduce the volume of our waste stream to the landfill so you will start seeing some bins to recover cans, bottles, plastic containers at our facilities.
That also includes separating our cardboard boxes for recycling.
We are looking at how we can start heating our shop areas using solar heating. However, as you can imagine it’s not very easy to heat a big open space when you have to open and close some very large doors all the time.
We are always open to suggestions.