Hazardous waste is not just generated by big factories; it is also generated by a wide range of normal businesses and even households. You probably have items in your home that you don't even realize are hazardous that you should be dealing with.
Identifying Household Hazardous Waste
There are a lot of materials around your home that are not actually safe to just put in the trash can because they are poisonous, toxic, reactive, explosive, corrosive, or flammable. Any item that has those properties shouldn't be thrown in with your normal trash, nor should those items be flushed down your plumbing.
Many common items you have in your house may fall under the category of hazardous waste. For example, yard supplies such as herbicides, insecticides, and lawn chemicals are all hazardous materials. Many cleaning items, such as chlorine bleach, drain cleaners, spot removers, and toilet cleaners, are hazardous to just throw away. Many items associated with your vehicle, from antifreeze to batteries to brake fluid, are all hazardous as well.
These items can't just be thrown away in the normal trash. They need to be disposed of in a proper manner so that they don't poison or taint someone or something and so that they don't blow up, explode, or catch fire.
Dealing With Household Hazardous Waste
When it comes to hazardous waste in your household, it is your responsibility to deal with that waste in an appropriate manner. In most communities, there are various options for dealing with household hazardous waste.
Local Business Collection Sites
Certain businesses in your area may collect items that are hazardous. These are usually items that they sell. For example, a local auto repair shop may offer drop-off of old motor oil and antifreeze for the public for free or for a small fee. A computer repair shop may allow people to drop off batteries for recycling. A gardening store may allow old gardening chemicals to be dropped off.
Businesses offer these drop-off services as a way to offer a service to their customers and because they probably get bulk pick-up of these types of items through a larger collection agency.
Community Collection Days
In many communities, the garbage service or the city itself will pay for and sponsor a few days each year where they have sites where people can drop off hazardous household waste. The drop-off sites are generally central locations that should be easy for people in the community to reach.
You can also contact your local sanitation department. They may be able to arrange for a special pickup of items from your home. Or they may have a center where you can bring and drop off the items to be properly disposed of.
When it comes to hazardous household waste, you need to find out if your community has any community collection days or if the local sanitation department has pickup or drop-off options, or if any local businesses will allow you to drop off your hazardous household waste for proper disposal. Contact a company that provides hazardous waste disposal services to learn more.