Body shops get a bad rap when it comes to being environmentally friendly. It is true that the repair process can generate a lot of waste. Repair waste from body shops can come in the form of entire vehicles that are not economical to repair and the plastic & metal parts that are damaged beyond repair and need to be disposed of. There is also an environmental impact caused by the chemicals, power usage, water usage, and other resources used in the repair process.
To repair a vehicle safely, some of this waste is necessary, but body shops have worked very hard to limit its environmental impact. In the last decade, and at Old Dominion, we are committed to reducing waste and limiting our impact on the environment.
We have worked with local experts, Bring Recycling, to become “Rethink Certified.” In fact, we were the first body shop to achieve this certification. Check out these other local businesses that have prioritized our community by becoming certified.
Old Dominion’s Steps to be Eco-Friendly
At Old Dominion Collision, we have taken these actions to prioritize the environment:
1. We use a water-based paint
We were one of the first collision repair shops in the country to switch from solvent-based paint to a water-based paint line. Water-based paint is still very high quality but emits fewer VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds), making it more environmentally friendly. It also has a higher viscosity, so less material is used to achieve desired results. We are proud to partner with Axalta Coating Systems to bring our clients environmentally friendly, high-quality automotive paint.
2. We have installed LED Lighting
Over the last 10 years, we have slowly converted our shop lighting over to LED fixtures. As bulbs burn out, the fixture is upgraded to LED. LED bulbs use 75% less energy and can last 25 times longer. Less energy use and less waste in the form of bulbs is a win-win for us!
3. Fan system
We recently installed a fan system that has cut down our energy usage by 30% because it pushes heat down in winter and promotes airflow in the summertime.
4. Our technicians use Clean Sanding Systems (Cleaner shop, Cleaner car, Cleaner air)
Our technicians use Festool HEPA dust extractors while sanding vehicles. These systems collect dust and toxins as we work so that the overall air quality of our shop and the local area is not impacted. These systems have been tested and approved by the EPA. An added benefit of this system is that our clients’ cars stay cleaner during the repair process.
5. We Reuse everything we can
- Packaging – we coordinate with local U-haul facilities to pick up any packaging that arrives with parts. This ensures that bubble wrap & foam packaging is reused.
- Bumpers – we coordinate with a local vendor who picks up used bumpers to reuse them in a variety of ways.
- Pallets – we ensure our delivery pallets are picked up and reused by local craftspeople.
- Paper – we reuse as much paper as possible by saving it to print on the back when possible.
6. Recycle everything we can
- We hold yearly recycling clinics for our team. We invite local experts to come in to help make sure we are correctly recycling any work or personal waste we generate.
- Metal, Radiators, Condenser, Wheels – we work with Pacific Recycling, Inc to ensure that damaged metal panels are recycled.
- Electronics – we work with Next Step Recycling to dispose of damaged headlamps, taillamps, mirrors, computer equipment, etc. Their team refurbishes items when possible, and if not possible, they disassemble the items and dispose of individual components properly.
- Tires – we work with Point S Tire Factory to responsibly recycle used tires.
- Chemicals – we store used chemicals in a drum and recycle them appropriately.
7. We strive to eliminate one-time use packaging/items and try to purchase recycled items when possible.
- Key tags – we switched over to a reusable key tag for the client’s key.
- Paper – we ONLY buy recycled paper.
- Dishware & silverware – 5 years ago, we stopped providing one-time use dish & service ware to our employees and now provide reusable items.
- We are conscious of packaging and waste when placing supply orders. We have committed to spending a little more to ensure that our overall waste is decreased.
8. Our office has gone mostly “paperless”
Over the last 10 years, we have decreased our paper use by over ½ by using more electronic paper storage.
9. We are your local EV Expert
- We have the equipment and training necessary to repair Electric Vehicles.
- We have a fully electric loaner vehicle available for our clients who are committed to decreasing their impact.
- We strive to educate our community on the advantages of switching to an EV.
10. We are always striving to be better.
We are constantly analyzing our processes and procedures to ensure we are producing as little waste as possible and stay focused on our environmental impact.
Support Body Shops that are Eco-Friendly
At Old Dominion Collision, we keep the environment in mind when we are repairing your vehicle! Call us today at 541-485-3368 or contact us online!