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Effluent Guidelines

Textile Mills Effluent Guidelines

""EPA promulgated the Textile Mills Effluent Guidelines (40 CFR Part 410) in 1974, and amended the regulation in 1977 and 1982. The regulation covers direct dischargerHelpdirect dischargerA point source that discharges pollutants to waters of the United States, such as streams, lakes, or oceans. facilities. The Textile Mills Effluent Guidelines are incorporated into NPDES permits.

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What is the Textile Mills Industry?

Textile mills are engaged principally in:
  • receiving and preparing fibers
  • transforming these materials into yarn, thread or webbing
  • converting the yarn and webbing into fabric or related products; and
  • finishing these materials.

Many facilities produce a final consumer product such as thread, yarn, bolt fabric, hosiery, towels, sheets and carpet, while the rest produce a transitional product for use by other establishments in the industry.

Wastewater is generated when textile mills use the following processes:
  • wool scouring, topmaking, and general cleaning of raw wool
  • wool finishing, including carbonizing, fulling, dyeing, bleaching, rinsing, fireproofing, and other similar processes
  • yarn manufacture, unfinished fabric manufacture, fabric coating, fabric laminating, tire cord and fabric dipping, and carpet tufting and carpet backing
  • woven fabric finishing, including desizing, bleaching, mercerizing, dyeing, printing, resin treatment, waterproofing, flameproofing, and application of soil repellency and other special finishes
  • knit fabric finishing, including bleaching, mercerizing, dyeing, printing, resin treatment, waterproofing, flameproofing, and application of soil repellency and other special finishes
  • carpet finishing, including bleaching, scouring, carbonizing, fulling, dyeing, printing, resin treatment, waterproofing, flameproofing, soil repellency, looping, and backing with foamed and unfoamed latex and jute
  • stock and yarn finishing, including cleaning, scouring, bleaching, mercerizing, dyeing and special finishing
  • manufacturing of nonwoven textile products of wool, cotton, or synthetics, or blends of such fabrics
These activities are included within NAICS group 313, Textile Mills.

Note: the NAICS listing is provided as a guide and does not define the coverage of the Textile Mills category. For precise definitions of coverage, see the applicability sections in 40 CFR Part 410.

Facilities Covered

The regulation applies to facilities organized into 9 subcategories:
  1. Wool Scouring
  2. Wool Finishing
  3. Low Water Use Processing
  4. Woven Fabric Finishing
  5. Knit Fabric Finishing
  1. Carpet Finishing
  2. Stock and Yarn Finishing
  3. Nonwoven Manufacturing
  4. Felted Fabric Processing

Guidance and Studies

Rulemaking History

1983 Correction

1982 Amendment

Revised BAT, NSPS; PSES & PSNS withdrawn
  • Documents, including:
    • Final rule (September 2, 1982)
      • Development Document (September 1982, 440/1-82/022)
    • Notice of Availability (January 27, 1981)
    • Proposed rule (October 29, 1979)

1977 Amendment

  • Documents, including:
    • Final rule (May 26, 1977)
    • Proposed rule (July 5, 1974)

1974 Initial Rulemaking

  • Documents, including:
    • Final rule (July 5, 1974)
      • Development Document (June 1974, 440/1-74/022a)
    • Proposed rule (February 5, 1974)

Additional Information

For additional information regarding the Textile Mills Effluent Guidelines, please contact Anthony Tripp ( at 202-566-1419.

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