Stormwater home page City of Los Angeles home page
      Department of Public Works Bureau of Sanitation

How to Prevent Stormwater Pollution at an Automobile Salvage Yard

PDF version

Dismantling and Vehicle Maintenance

Drain fluids from vehicles when they first arrive. Keep oil, antifreeze, transmission fluids, and other fluids separated while draining for easier recycling and disposal.

After draining, promptly transfer fluids to proper containers in an area where any spills can be contained and cleaned up before reaching a storm drain. Do not pour liquid wastes into floor drains, sinks or storm drain inlets. Used oil, anti-freeze, and gasoline can all be recycled. Other fluids should be disposed of properly, as hazardous waste if necessary.

Oil filters, mineral spirits, solvents, and batteries can also be recycled. Drain oil filters before recycling. Store batteries indoors in a contained area until they can be recycled.

Monitor drip pans and other open fluid containers and empty them regularly, before they become full. Clean up any spills, overflows, or leaks as soon as possible.

Outdoor Vehicle, Equipment, and Parts Storage

Place drip pans under all leaking vehicles and equipment.

Store parts, dismantled vehicles, materials and fluids in designated areas. Cover the areas with a permanent cover or tarp and place a curb, dike or berm around the area.

Vehicle, Equipment and Parts Washing Areas

Clean parts and equipment indoors. If the water is discharged to the sanitary sewer (i.e. through an industrial sink) get approval from the wastewater treatment plant. If outdoors, work inside a curbed, bermed or diked area to contain the wash water.

Consider using phosphate-free, biodegradable detergent-based or water-based cleaning systems rather than organic solvent degreasers

Facility Organization

Keep maintenance shop materials organized. Keep the inventory streamlined to reduce the need for covered storage space. Properly label all barrels and containers.

Inspect the facility regularly. Fix or replace any damaged containment areas and storage containers, clean up spilled fluids and materials, and make sure the control measures are properly implemented.

Numbers to Call for More Information

Department of Toxic Substances Control (hazardous waste questions) (818) 551-2800/2830 (Duty officer) or (916) 324-1826.

Regional Water Quality Control Board, Los Angeles Region (213) 266-7500

Check the phone book for your local wastewater treatment plant.

If you have questions about this fact sheet, please call (800) 974-9794.

Properly dispose of hazardous waste.
Drain all fluids from vehicles when they arrive and store them separately.
Immediately clean up spills using dry methods.
Use designated wash areas for cleaning automobile parts.
Cover and berm auto dismantling and material storage areas.
See also the BMP Poster for Auto Repair Shops
back to top of page