Guide

Save water at commercial premises

Reduce water use from garages and vehicle cleaning facilities

A garage or vehicle cleaning facility can use large amounts of water. It is important that you look closely at how your business can save water and use it more efficiently in these areas.

You should avoid using mains water supplies where possible. Using grey water from other areas of your business, such as catering or laundry facilities, can have a significant impact on your business' overall water use and wastewater bills.

You could also:

  • collect your own water supplies via rainwater collection systems to supplement the mains water you use
  • use high-pressure water and steam cleaners as they offer more efficient use of mains water for cleaning purposes
  • use trigger-operated hoses as they prevent water from being wasted when a hose is left on

Make sure garages have an oil separator installed on surface water drainage systems to prevent pollution. Note that you must clean and inspect your oil separators regularly to ensure they are operating at maximum efficiency.

Wastewater that your garage or vehicle facility produces must be handled correctly. Water can become contaminated with waxes, detergent, particulates and hydrocarbons. Where possible use biodegradable, phosphate-free detergents. Carry out cleaning in an impermeable area where the cleaning water is prevented from running off. This water must always be discharged to the foul drain and not to the surface drain.

Your business should also, where possible, recycle water by removing contaminants. This can be carried out using one or more processes, including:

  • filtration
  • wax removal
  • sedimentation
  • centrifugal separation
  • reverse osmosis