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Motor Vehicle Waste Disposal Wells

Our Underground Injection Control (UIC) program is responsible for Motor Vehicle Waste Disposal Well (MVWDW) closures in Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, and Indian Lands in Region 5. We also work with the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency on the Illinois UIC Class V Mutual Benefits Project.

Para informacción en español, consulte Páginas en Español.

You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader, available as a free download, to view some of the files on this page. See EPA's PDF page to learn more about PDF, and for a link to the free Acrobat Reader.

Small Entity Compliance Guide - How the New Motor Vehicle Waste Disposal Well Rule Affects Your Business

The Small Entity Compliance Guide - How the New Motor Vehicle Waste Disposal Well Rule Affects Your Business (PDF) [816-R-00-018 / November 2000] (33 pp, 400K) outlines Federal requirements. It also explains requirements for allowing the reclassification or conversion of a motor vehicle waste disposal well to another type of Class V injection well. The guide includes answers to questions such as:

You may also order a copy of this guide by calling the Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 800-426-4791.

I have a Motor Vehicle Waste Disposal Well to close. What do I have to do?

  1. Notify US EPA that you will close your disposal well, and how you will do it.
    1. Send US EPA a completed Pre-Closure Notification Form (PDF) (2 pp, 59K).
      In most situations, an acceptable form will have the following boxes checked under the type of well closure:
      • Clean out well;
      • Appropriate disposal of remaining fluids/sediments; and
      • Install permanent plug
    2. Along with the form, a Closure Plan should be included. This is simply a very brief (sentence or two) description of each of the boxes checked on the form. An example of these descriptions can be found in Closure Guidelines for Facilities with Motor Vehicle Waste Disposal Wells (PDF) (2pp, 11K). We also have pictures of example floor drain closures.
    3. If sampling of the fluids or sediments is necessary, you need to include a description of how this will be done. To see if you need to sample, look at When Is Sampling Required (PDF) (2pp, 30K). What is needed in a Sampling Plan is described in Guidelines for Sampling and Analyses of Motor Vehicle Waste Disposal Wells (PDF) (2pp, 12K).
  2. Close your disposal well.
    1. If you don't hear back from US EPA within 30 days, or if you are told that the Closure Plan is acceptable, you may go ahead and close your disposal well as you described in the plan.
    2. US EPA will contact you within 30 days of our receipt of your plan if you need to make any changes to your plan.
    3. Save proof that you closed your disposal well. Examples of this proof could be: before and after pictures, receipts for closure supplies (like cement) or for work done (like tank pumping and cleaning), any sample results, etc. You need to keep this for at least 3 years.
  3. Let US EPA know that your disposal well was closed, and how it was done.
    1. Provide a Closure Report that describes how the disposal well was closed to US EPA. This could simply be a signed letter that says that the disposal well was closed as described in your Closure Plan. Include proof of the closure.
    2. If your disposal well was closed differently than in your closure plan, describe the changes and explain why it was done that way.

Oh no! I already closed my floor drain but didn't follow all those procedures. Now what should I do?

You will not be penalized for closing your well before the EPA contacted you about how to close it. We do still need to know when and generally how it was closed.

In this situation, we still want you to fill out and sign the Pre-Closure Notification Form (PDF) (2 pp, 59K). Just cross out the "Pre-" on the top of the form, check all the boxes that apply, and include the date the disposal well was closed (instead of the proposed date of well closure). No Closure Plan is necessary.

Mail the form (and any proof of the well closure like a picture or copies of receipts) to:

U.S. EPA Region 5
Underground Injection Control Branch
ATTN: Lisa Perenchio (WU-16J)
77 W. Jackson Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60604-3590

MVWDW Closure Video

The Ground Water Protection Council (GWPC) Exit EPA Disclaimer prepared a MVWDW Closure Video to help owners and operators of Motor Vehicle Waste Disposal Wells understand compliance with UIC regulations and how to close their wells. Contact GWPC about ordering a copy in DVD, VHS, or CD format.

Sample Signs to Post By Sinks in Facilities with Motor Vehicle Waste Disposal Wells (MVWDWs)

Facility owners and operators can print and post these signs near sinks in facilities with MVWDWs to remind workers not to dispose of motor vehicle waste down the sink drains. They can also use these as examples to create their own signs for posting.

You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader, available as a free download, to view some of the files on this page. See EPA's PDF page to learn more about PDF, and for a link to the free Acrobat Reader.

Sign View Sign
Sign 1- Handwash Only Sign for Sink Sample Sign 1 PDF (1 p, 22 K)
Sign 2 - Wash Water Only Sign for Wash Bay Area Sample Sign 2 PDF (1 p, 31 K)

Accredited Laboratories for Sampling

The TNI or The NELAC (National Environmental Laboratory Accreditation) Institute Exit EPA Disclaimer has information about accredited laboratories. The Indiana State Department of Health also recommends certified laboratories in Indiana and there is a Michigan Environmental Laboratory Directory which lists accredited laboratories in Michigan.

Available Information from States

This section of this page provides links to non-EPA web sites that provide additonal information related to closing MVWDWs. You will leave the EPA.gov domain and enter another page with more information. EPA cannot attest to the accuracy of information on that non-EPA page. Providing links to a non-EPA Web site is not an endorsement of the other site or the information it contains by EPA or any of its employees. Also, be aware that the privacy protection provided on the EPA.gov domain (see Privacy and Security Notice) may not be available at the external link. Exit EPA Disclaimer

Illinois

Illinois Environmental Protection Agency Underground Injection Control Program

Indiana

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management has information for Vehicle Maintenance Shops and the Indiana State Department of Health has information on certified laboratories in Indiana.

Michigan

Environmental Guidebook for the Vehicle Service Industry
Michigan Environmental Laboratory Directory

Minnesota

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has prepared a checklist PDF (2pp, 182K) for automotive wastewater discharges to help you determine Minnesota requirements for wastewater disposal. Their Transportation Services and the Environmental web page has other fact sheets related to wastewater disposal.


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