Used Engine Oils and Fluids Given New Life with New Base Program

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Bill Wiseman
  • 185th ARW Public Affairs
The 185th Air Refueling Wing Vehicle Maintenance (ARWVM) has found a way to save money while helping people solve a common problem of what to do with their used motor oil. Earlier this year Vehicle Maintenance started accepting used motor oil, transmission fluid, hydraulic oil, and fuel oils from unit members. The fluids are used in a special furnace to heat the maintenance bay.

While it is still too early to put an exact number to how many dollars the program will save over the course of the year, it should be substantial. According to Master Sgt. Bob Phipps, 185 ARWVM, the oil is burned cleanly in a 175,000 BTU, high efficiency, low-maintenance furnace.

While the program has just gotten started over 1400 gallons used petroleum based products have already been donated with almost half of that coming from the local Army National Guard unit. Of the donated oil received 625 gallons was used this winter.

The program not only saves the unit money for heating costs but also helps protect the environment by providing an environmentally sound way to dispose of harmful oils and fluids.

While members are encouraged to donate their used oils, there are some rules. All contributions will be accepted at Vehicle Maintenance on Thursdays from 1230 to 1400 and Saturdays of drill weekends from 1230-1400. A maximum of 55 gallons will be accepted from any one person. With large quantity donations, the donator must wait while the donation is tested for the presence of anti-freeze or gasoline. According to Chief Master Sgt. Jim Schnieder, 185 ARWMV, if the donated oil does not meet specifications the oil will not be accepted.

This program is a combined effort of the Environmental Management Office, Civil Engineering and Logistics Readiness Squadron as a way to save money on energy, protect the environment, and serve unit members at the same time.

The appearance of hyperlinks does not constitute endorsement by the 185th Air Refueling Wing, the Iowa Air National Guard, the United States Air Force or the Department of Defense of the external website, or information, products, or services contained therein. For other than authorized activities such as military exchanges and Services/Morale Welfare and Recreation (MWR) sites, the United States Air Force does not exercise editorial control over the information users may find at these locations. Such links are provided consistent with the stated purpose of the website.