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Cleaning up the automotive industry – sustainably

Cleaning up the automotive industry – sustainably

Sep 30, 2015

By Clinton Smith, Technical & Sales Director, Green Worx Cleaning Solutions

Washing cars has often been listed on the ‘top ten’ list of water wasters world-wide. While home-washing usually uses far more water than professional cleaning services, either way, natural resources are going to waste. While the wasted water drains away, with it goes an onslaught of dangerous chemicals; seeping into the ground, entering the water table and endangering those that come into contact with them.

Add to washing the car the chemicals and water needed to clean the showroom, remove grease and grime in workshops and tidy up manufacturing plants, and it becomes clear that sustainable cleaning practices are a must in the automotive industry. Whether environmentally friendly cleaning is implemented through waterless systems, low- to no-chemical cleaning products and/or responsible practices, something must be done to ensure that the earth’s limited supply of resources is protected.

In addition to the 300 to 500 litres of water that goes down the drain when washing a car at home, Volatile Organic Chemicals (VOCs) are washing away too. These VOCs are heavily polluting, non-biodegradable and dangerous to those that come into contact with them, causing serious medical maladies. Despite this, cars are assets that need to be washed, showrooms must be kept clean and hygienic and factories and workshops must be degreased and de-grimed for health and safety. So how can this be achieved without damaging the environment?

Through the use of enzymatic and biotechnology products, waterless car wash systems have been developed, while grease and grime is easily digested, leaving a hygienically clean surface.

Enzymes are long-chain proteins that serve as natural catalysts. Due to the fact that one enzyme molecule can act on many substrate molecules (such as soils and stains), a small amount of enzyme added to a detergent, provides a significant cleaning benefit. Through many years of testing it has been proven that enzymes have a very safe toxicological profile, lending to their sustainability profile.

Biotechnology products, on the other hand, combine with non-hazardous chemical and enzyme formulations. While the cleaning effects are fast and effective, this microbial technology continues to work long-term, providing deep cleaning, odour control and waste treatment benefits that standard chemical products simply cannot provide. The natural action of microbes provides a new generation of green cleaning and hygiene products that are highly effective, safe to use and benefits both mankind and the environment.

Choosing a cleaning approach that is beneficial to the health of the user and those that occupy the space or car being cleaned, protects the environment and offers cost-saving benefits through concentrated formulas seems like a no-brainer – so why isn’t the entire industry on board?

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