Fergus Auto Recyclers working hard for ‘a greener tomorrow’

The general concept of recycling is nothing new.

By the 1980s, most municipalities had blue box programs in place, and today recycling is part of daily life – but most people never associate the idea with the automotive industry.

Bob Vanleeuwen and the rest of his team at Fergus Auto Recyclers are trying to change all that.

“Recycling today for a greener tomorrow,” is a theme the company has adopted at its home on County Road 29, just  outside Fergus.

Vanleeuwen, whose goal is to recycle everything possible from “end-of-life” vehicles, said more education is needed because right now, “It’s just not happening.”

People often confuse auto wrecking establishments with facilities like Fergus Auto Recyclers, which is the only licenced auto recycling location between Guelph and Mount Forest, Vanleeuwen said.

“It costs a lot of money to do it right,” he said, explaining why some wrecking facilities do not observe environmentally friendly practices. “It can be a real underground, black market type of trade.”

And though he acknowledged the auto recycling industry has “come a long way” in recent years, there are currently no federal, provincial, or muni­cipal laws regulating the dismantling of vehicles. Nor are there any incentives for businesses like his that implement green practices.

Vanleeuwen has worked for years with the Ontario Auto­motive Recycling Association to lobby for more strict guidelines in the industry. To date, however, the group’s efforts have largely fallen on deaf ears at the province.

But at Fergus Auto Recyc­lers, which Vanleeuwen has owned since 1992, the ten staff members take every possible precaution to ensure a negligible impact on the environment, such as:

– safely draining all fluids, including gas, oil, antifreeze, and brake fluids, and recycling batteries;

– removing old mercury switches and shipping them to the Clean Air Foundation for recycling and re-use in compact fluorescent light bulbs;

– recycling any re-usable parts; and

– crushing and recycling scrap vehicles and ensuring proper final disposal.

Vanleeuwen said his em­ployees also ensure that any “pollutant-geared” work is done indoors, to ensure there is no leakage into the ground.

Once the recyclable components are removed from the vehicles,  they are carefully  labelled, stored, and recorded in the company’s electronic inventory.

That process helps with an­other large portion of the company’s business: on-site re­pairs, rebuilds, and parts ex­changes, all of which come complete with warranties.

The company’s website (www.fergusauto.com) offers customers a number of services, including:

– parts requests;

– information on selling or buying a vehicle;

– an on-line parts inventory system; and

– a section for customer feedback.

Simply put, Fergus Auto Recyclers is the perfect place to meet all end-of-life vehicle needs and to satisfy environmental concerns.

For more information visit the shop in person at 6252 County Road 29, call 519-843-2948, visit fergusauto.com, or email info@fergusauto.com.