BizBeat: Green is more than a color at local collision shop

Everyone seems to be going green these days. Grocery stores sell recycled bags that boast, “I used to be a plastic bottle.” Companies stamp “eco-friendly” on cleaners, clothing and beauty products.

For those looking for an even greater way to reduce their carbon footprint, now the car industry has thrown its hat into the ring of “going green.”

D&K Collision and Refinish says its latest product, PPG Industries Envirobase high performance waterborne paint, falls into that category. This low-VOC (volatile organic compound) basecoat not only leads the local shop toward a better tomorrow, but has proved it’s worth through better color match and coating perfection.

Owner Doug Kliethermes describes the new product as a “win-win” times five.

“We’re always striving to make things a little bit better for the environment,” Kliethermes noted. With four young kids, the shop owner hopes everyone will take the necessary steps to creating a better future. “I know my industry, and this is a way I can make a big impact.”

The waterborne paint system reduces the emission of VOCs into the atmosphere by 80 percent, and cuts the shop’s hazard waste production by more than 50 percent. It is nontoxic, which is better for the environment, and also better for D&K employees.

The basecoat is solvent-free and creates a barrier underneath, holding down any and all imperfections.

“The clearcoat lays down like a sheet of glass,” he said. Kliethermes said his employees are loving the new system as well. A new state-of-the-art scale with touch screen computer helps the employees match the paint color down to the slightest variation. It then shows exactly the amount of paint needed for the specific job and then sends the information to the front desk for a more accurate consumer cost.

Solvent based paints require a good shaking before use. But the new waterborne system has an anti-settle tint technology, assuring toner stability and long shelf-life.

It’s also easy to apply and blend, no matter who is doing the painting.

“The spray technique doesn’t matter. Different guys can spray and there is no difference. The color match is 100 percent more accurate,” Kliethermes said.

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