How You Can Dispose of Household Hazardous Waste

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Old Paint, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from Voxphoto’s photostream

Last week, we told you where you could recycle old electronics, this week it’s how you can safely and responsibly dispose of household hazardous wastes. These are common household chemicals that typically contain words such as “caution,” “warning,” “poison,” or “flammable” on their label, but aren’t regulated as hazardous waste by either state or federal laws. However, as you may imagine, these are chemicals which are not good for the environment and that shouldn’t be dumped along with the rest of our trash. Most of us know that we shouldn’t so these products tend to get shoved to the back of a cupboard or basement or garage. In fact, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, an average home can easily accumulate 100 pounds of these common chemicals!

For those eager to part ways with this waste, there will be a Household Chemical Collection event for Allegheny County tomorrow, Saturday, July 27th from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM at the Second Ave. parking lot (under the 10th Street Bridge/Next to County Jail) in the City of Pittsburgh.

There is a $2.00 per gallon fee (CASH ONLY).

Items that can be disposed of include:

•aerosol cans
•automotive fluids (e.g., motor oil, transmission fluid, antifreeze, kerosene, brake fluid)
•batteries
•chemistry sets
•compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) (Bulbs only- we do not accept fluorescent tubes)
•gasoline and kerosene
•household cleaners (ammonia, drain openers, acid cleaners, oven cleaners)
•mercury thermometers/mercury
•paint products (latex, oil based, alkyd based, arts/crafts chemicals, rust preservatives, creosote, water sealers, paint thinners, furniture strippers)
•pesticides/garden (rodent killers, insecticides, weed killers, mothballs, fertilizer)
•photo chemicals
•pool chemicals

Items that WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED include:

•ammunition
•appliances
•bulk waste
•commercial and industrial waste
•compressed gas cylinders (including propane tanks)
•explosives
•flares
•fluorescent tubes
•leaking containers
•medical waste (including needles and sharps)
•prescription or non-prescription drugs
•PCBs and dioxin
•radioactive materials (including smoke detectors)
•tires

Please note, that no leaking items will be accepted.

For more information, please see the event flyer here and a .pdf document here that explains step-by-step how these collection events work. The next scheduled event in Allegheny County is September 21st.

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Household Chemical Collection, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from PA Resources Council’s photostream