CarLovers Carwash Limited

Car Washing Efficiently: Carlovers Carwash Limited

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Courtesy of CarLovers Carwash Limited

 Background

Since 1988, CarLovers Carwash Limited has operated a network of automatic and self-serve carwash facilities throughout Australia. CarLovers currently has 87 carwash outlets operating in Australia.

Pre-existing Process

Previous car wash facilities discharged all their wash water to sewer and did not reuse the wash water.

Cleaner Production Initiative

CarLovers is totally committed to ëcleaner productioní practises and each new site employs the latest technology to save on light and heat and conserve and recycle water. All water is filtered and treated for reuse.

Only biodegradable, non toxic detergents are used. Some of the programs that CarLovers has implemented are discussed below:

Reclaiming and recycling water

The water reclamation system used at CarLovers involves:

  • A primary interceptor trap is located below each washbay to separate oil and grease from the water. Collected material is removed regularly from the traps and placed into temporary seepage bins, to remove excess water.
  • Water from the primary interceptor is discharged to secondary settlement and underground holding tanks which further separates solids, oils and greases.
  • Water is then filtered through a sophisticated reclamation system where it is treated for re-use. Any discharge to trade waste is well below the Water Boardís acceptance level.

Generating heat from the atmosphere

Most sites have an energy efficient heat pump to heat the wash water. The Heat Wave Heat Pump extracts heat energy from the atmosphere for use 24 hours a day throughout the year. Heat generated in this way is over six times more efficient than a gas or oil fired water heating system. This means that for every kilowatt of energy used by the heat pump, up to 5.5 kilowatts of energy is produced.

Conserving energy for lighting

With the help of consulting engineers and a team of energy auditors, CarLovers developed new ways to minimise energy usage. Light fittings which reduce energy by 50% while providing high, safe levels of illumination, are used at most sites across the country.

Advantages of the Process

CarLovers systems allow the reuse of up to 80% of all water used during washing. This amounts to an annual saving in excess of 1 billion litres of water.

Cleaner Production Incentives

CarLovers was established in response to community concern about chemicals, oils and grease entering storm water drains and eventually contaminating natural waterways such as rivers and lakes. As kerbside carwashing is increasingly discouraged in all states, car owners needed a place to wash their cars efficiently without harming the environment. CarLovers provided the answer.

Barriers

No barriers were encountered by CarLovers in establishing and identifying the needs of the business.

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