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dd are in every item that we purchase or bring into our home. Most of these chemicals are harmless, but some deserve special care when deciding on how to dispose of them. This article covers proper disposal for household chemicals classified as hazardous. To learn more about what household chemicals are considered hazardous, check out this guide on how to properly dispose household medical waste. Improper disposal of household chemical waste causes harm to the environment and can potentially put sanitation workers in a dangerous situation.

Step 1.Follow Specified Directions

Sometimes, a chemical waste will have directions on the label for how to dispose of unused product. If so, follow those directions. If there are none, follow the guide in this article.

Step 2. Properly Secure the Wastee

Children and pets, particularly young children, can easily discover and play with household chemical waste. Therefore, it is essential that liquid chemical waste is put in a secure container that cannot be opened. Make sure that the lid is on tightly and not able to leak.

Place this container in a second container that can catch any possible leaks.

In the event of solid chemical waste, like a thermometer or car battery, keep the material out of reach and place it in the larger secondary container. This is particularly important during transportation so that there are no spills or breaking in the car.

Step 3. Identify the Right Container

Chemical waste can react with the materials in the container. This reaction could cause the container to weaken or leak. In general, if you are disposing of an acid or base, make sure not to place it in a metal container. Battery acid would be an example of an acid and oven or drain cleaner would be a base. If you are disposing of oil or fuel, make sure not to place it in a lightweight plastic container.

Step 4. Fill Containers Appropriately

Some chemical waste will be solid and others will be liquid. It is important to make sure there is enough room at the top of the container to safely secure the lid. In general, do not mix different household chemicals in the same container unless you know they can safely be combined.

Step 5. Label the Containers

While you may remember what is in a container when you add the chemical waste to it, this is information that might not be recalled at a later point in time. Therefore, it is important to label the household chemical waste as clearly as possible. Include on this label when waste was added to the container.

Step 6. Handle the Waste Appropriately

It is important to wear gloves with waste that needs to be specially disposed of. This minimizes the risks associated with skin-to-chemical contact. For example, orchid food spray can cause burns on skin if contact is made when there is leftover spray, you would want to use gloves when disposing.

Step 7. Transport Waste for Disposal

When the container is full or when you are done with that particular chemical material, the container needs to actually be thrown away. However, it cannot be thrown into the regular trash. There are a few different options for disposing of the chemicals.

One, some businesses or police stations will allow for dropping off of the waste. For example, an auto repair store could accept antifreeze or a home improvement store could take back unused wood varnish. Two, the household waste center could have a day where most household chemical waste can be thrown away. This is typically advertise on local radio stations or through the waste management website. Third, your waste management company could collect the waste along with nonhazardous chemical waste. If this is the case, make sure the container is clearly labeled. Fourth, some larger cities could have designated hazardous waste facilities. These facilities handle all kinds of waste, not just chemical. However, it is a place where this chemical waste can be taken.

Follow these steps and you will feel better about disposing of chemical and hazardous waste. If you are unclear of the type of waste and there is no directions on the label, call your local hazardous waste facility and they will inform you of the proper procedure for that household chemical.

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