The Illinois EPA has issued new revisions to the regulation addressing Solvent Cleaning Operations. The rule covers virtually any facility in the Chicago metro area that uses solvent cleaners containing Volatile Organic Materials (VOM), including cold cleaning (i.e. parts washers), vapor degreasing, wipe cleaning, spray gun cleaning, equipment cleaning, floor cleaning and tank cleaning.

On July 27, 2011, the Illinois EPA finalized many important changes to their recent Solvent Cleaning regulations (35 IAC 218.187). The original regulation is complicated and the changes are also complicated.
The revised rule:

  • extended the compliance deadline until January 1, 2012
  • changed the applicability threshold from 15 pounds of VOM in any day to 500 pounds per month and exempted many cleaning categories from even counting towards the 500 pounds threshold
  • actually loosened several limits for VOM content in a cleaner
  • expanded the exemptions from the rule
  • changed requirements and/or new definitions for specific source categories

A new certification statement is required to be submitted to the Agency by January 1, 2012, for all facilities that have solvent cleaning operations. This includes the many facilities exempted under the rule and those that previously filed a certification under the original rules.

The new certification includes documentation for:

  • all of the VOM containing solvent cleaning operations at your facility,
  • how each cleaning operation will comply with the various solvent cleaning regulatory requirements and limits

Many exemptions are listed in the new rule, which means that many facilities are already in compliance if they meet one or more of the exemptions. But they still must submit the certification statement.

Admiral can assist in reviewing your solvent cleaning operations and preparing the new certification with the required backup documentation.

If you would like Admiral to evaluate your operation, please give us a call or contact me at

Steve Anderson, PE
Environmental Engineer

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