Did you just finish a big paint job and now need to find a way to safely dispose of the old paint can?
Paint will always be needed for remodeling or improving the look of your house or apartment. People also use paint for art projects or for giving furniture a fresh new look in the spring. Or maybe you are seeking a new wall color or a new look for the exterior of your house to improve your home’s curb appeal. Whenever there is paint used, there almost always happens to be a little leftover paint that feels hard to get rid of.
How to Dispose of Leftover Paint
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How to Dispose of Old Paint
If you feel as though you don’t know what to do with old paint, well, you are certainly not alone. Most people have zero clue what to do with paint once they are finished with a project.
Getting rid of paint is more complicated than just throwing cans away in your weekly garbage.
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Why Can’t You Just Put Paint in the Trash?
It is key to remember that you can’t simply throw away paint. The reason is that paint can be very toxic!. In fact, the improper disposal of paint/ paint cans is against the law in some states.
Why does paint receive this kind of special attention? It can contain a surprisingly wide array of compounds, and some are much more toxic and problematic than others. For example, oil-based paint is typically the most toxic. Paint-related compounds, such as paint thinner, are also quite problematic and can fall under the umbrella of hazardous waste.
Paint is Hazardous: Don’t Dump It
Paint has to be dropped off in an appropriate location, one that is willing to take hazardous materials. You cannot simply throw away paint at the dump. There are concerns that it will leak into the ground and contaminate the water supply.
It is a good thing rules like this are in place, as dropping off toxic materials at the dump could also hurt the air quality throughout an entire city.
Yes, it is a little strange that you can cover the walls of your home in something that is considered too toxic to be disposed of at the dump, but this is the fact of the matter.
Paint that is safer for people and more environmentally friendly should probably be an industry priority. But until that day arrives, we the consumer have no choice but to invest our time and energy into the disposal of paint.
How to Harden Paint for Disposal
Wouldn’t it be nice to get rid of this paint without ever having to leave your house? If you only have a tiny amount of paint to get rid of then consider letting it dry out in the sun. If there is no wet paint left in the can, you can throw it away. Be sure to check local paint disposal laws.
How to Get Latex Paint Ready for Disposal DIY
Specifically for latex paint, mix equal parts of cat litter and paint, stir, and let it sit for several hours until it thickens. Dirt, mulch and even shredded paper can be used as a paint hardener. Hardware stores and chains like Ace, Home Depot and Lowe’s also sell bags of paint hardener.
Give Old Paint a Second Life
Perhaps the easiest and fastest way to get rid of your extra paint is to find a way to use it yourself. Instead of buying new paint for the job, consider using the paint you already have on hand. Paint is usually not very eco-friendly. However, putting all of your paint to good use is definitely a step in the right direction towards living a sustainable life!
Leftover paint projects
- cover ups
Donating Old Paint
Rules vary by state, but there may be programs out there to help you dispose of your paint.
Paint take-back programs
Paint take-back programs are a great way to deal with this issue. Try googling the name of your city or state with “paint take-back program.” There may very well be local paint stores or other businesses that have volunteered to take unneeded paint.
🎨Local Drop-Off Sites: Visit Paintcare.org for information on local drop-off sites for old paint.
Charities that take used paint
Some charities may have interest in your paint. Charities, such as Habitat for Humanity, will put your paint to very good use. Check with Habitat for Humanity and see if they have any interest in your paint. The time you invest emailing or calling them could be well worth it. Taking this step will help ensure that your extra paint is used to help complete and protect another home.
LoadUp that Paint and Forget About It
LoadUp specializes in the proper removal of all kinds of unwanted items including paint. Simply ensure that your paint is mixed with cat litter or dirt and we’ll come get it for you.
If you have any questions about whether we will accept the type of paint you have and how to correctly prepare it for us, just give us a call. We look forward to taking that paint off your hands!
If you have any questions about whether we will accept the type of paint you have and how to correctly prepare it, just give us a call. We look forward to taking that paint off your hands!
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