Car Wash - Commercial

Over 20 years of continuous monitoring focusing on wastewater discharges from commercial car washes to the sanitary sewer, USD has found that in most cases, levels of oil & grease, copper, lead, nickel and zinc in wastewater exceed USD discharge limits with some results exceeding California hazardous waste limits. All commercial car washes are equipped with an approved treatment system consisting of a multi-chambered interceptor that is designed to reduce the pollutant load to acceptable levels. Therefore, the District determined that the high discharge levels of these pollutants are a result of not maintaining these systems at a level where they are effective. As a result, USD has adopted the following discharge requirements for commercial car washes. These requirements cover all 24-hour coin operated, automated/manual and service station facilities located within the District's service area of Fremont, Newark, and Union City:

  1. All commercial car washes shall reduce the concentration and amount of pollutants in their wastewater discharge to comply with all USD discharge limits.
  2. All commercial car washes shall have a professional service pump-out all chambers of their interceptors at least twice a year per allowed variance. Some facilities may be required to increase this frequency. Employing a septic service to perform this operation is strictly prohibited.
  3. All owners of commercial car washes shall properly maintain the on-site treatment system to meet local discharge limits.

Please direct any questions you may have regarding these requirements to the environmental compliance division at Union Sanitary District.




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5072 Benson Road

Union City, CA 94587-2508

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