Resources & Associations for Vehicle Maintenance
At some point you may need more information, need to ask questions or find out what others think about a situation. Take advantage of your opportunities to get connected. Talking to peers and suppliers to your industry through membership in a trade association can help you solve problems.
Most paint manufacturing and supply companies offer technical assistance and ongoing training to customers. Contact your paint company representative for more information. Local industry leaders are more than willing to answer questions and provide advice to shop owners considering transitioning to waterborne paints or investigating other environmental practices. Pat Mulroy, owner of Mulroy’s Body Shop in Minneapolis, and Peter Latuff, owner of Latuff Brothers Auto Body in Saint Paul, were essential participants in MEI’s project and both provide a wealth of knowledge and experience on leading industry practices. Other progressive shops made headlines during the 2015 MPCA grant round to reduce volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Their stories are found here.
Numerous resources exist to help small businesses implement energy efficiency, waste reduction, or other environmentally friendly projects or process changes. They may help your facility reduce waste or learn more about pollution prevention opportunities.
- The MPCA’s Small Business Environmental Assistance Program (SBEAP) provides information on air quality and other rules affecting auto body shops.
- Energy Facts and Recommendations for the Collision Repair Professional [PDF 641KB]. Energy Smart is a program of Minnesota Waste Wise whose mission is to help businesses save money through energy efficiency. By helping businesses take advantage of existing energy utility programs and rebates, Energy Smart helps make the process easier.
- U.S. EPA’s Energy STAR Program. The Energy STAR Program provides resources to help small businesses save money and protect the environment through energy efficient products and practices.
- EPA SmartWay. SmartWay is a partnership program that helps the freight transportation sector improve supply chain efficiency through environmentally cleaner, more fuel efficient transportation options..
- EI Project Green Fleet. Project Green Fleet is an effort of the Environmental Initiative (EI) to reduce emissions from school buses and other diesel vehicles. Project Green Fleet has grown from a small pilot-scale project to a robust, statewide effort to reduce diesel emissions. EI has installed pollution control equipment on 3,200 school buses in Minnesota, plus more than 1,300 other truck upgrades.
- National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). ASE’s mission is to improve the quality of vehicle repair and service through the testing and certification of repair and service professionals. At present, about 400,000 professionals hold current certifications. They work in every segment of the automotive service industry: car and truck dealerships, independent garages, fleets, service stations, franchises, and more.
- I-CAR. Live Training is a series of individual, modularized training programs, which allows students to choose those segments that best fit their training needs. These programs offer in-depth coverage of both conventional and innovative collision repair technologies and processes. Live Training programs feature knowledge-based training and performance-based testing, with an increased emphasis on hands-on exercises.
- Painter training. This Iowa Waste Reduction Center training helps industry, the military, and auto refinishing industry use less material and improve finish quality. The information is valuable to any spray painters wanting to improve their spray technique and efficiency.
Associations & Other Affiliations
- Association of Automotive Service Providers (AASP) – Minnesota Chapter
- Minnesota Automobile Dealers Association
- Minnesota Trucking Association
- Northern Collision Business Association
- Automotive Recyclers of Minnesota
- Iowa Collision Repair Association
- Minnesota/South Dakota Equipment Dealers Association
- Minnesota Energy Smart
- Minnesota WasteWise Foundation
- Wisconsin Auto Collision Technicians Association
- Your nearby Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) campus automotive and truck maintenance programs and instructors