PROPER PAINT DISPOSAL

A few years ago we purchased an investment house that came with a multitude of problems.  One of the least was the 35 gallons of ancient paint in the basement.  Some was even lead based.  This was a small town and no local hazardous waste facility.  It took a lot of research, but I finally found through the local trash company’s main office a knowledgeable woman who gave me the instructions on how to dispose of all the old paint.

It took 6 months, a 5 foot tall stack of cardboard and newspaper and 300 pounds of kitty litter to accomplish.  We only have 4 gallons to do here so this will be a quick process.

PROPER PAINT DISPOSAL 1STEP 1 – Arrange the cardboard boxes on top of plastic drop cloths .

PROPER PAINT DISPOSAL 2

STEP 2 – Open the cans and arrange the lids paint side up along the bottom of the boxes on top of several layers of old newspaper.

PROPER PAINT DISPOSAL 3

STEP 3 – Sprinkle a substantial layer of clay based kitty litter over the can lids.

PROPER PAINT DISPOSAL 4

STEP 4 – Pour the first can of paint over the kitty litter and spread even with a paint stir stick.

PROPER PAINT DISPOSAL 5

STEP 5 – Sprinkle another layer of kitty litter on top and allow to dry.  This process can take anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 months depending on the paint consistency and amount.  Ideally you want to make very thin layers and not make the boxes too heavy to lift.

STEP 6 – Sprinkle kitty litter all over the insides of the empty cans.

PROPER PAINT DISPOSAL 6

STEP 7 – When the paint is dry, toss the whole mess in your trash can.  Simple as that.

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  • I wonder how that makes it any safer? I can understand maybe initially safer but in the long run? Hmmm.

    • I agree with the initially part! I couldn’t believe how hard it was to get rid of this stuff in a small community. I don’t remember the particulars, but it had something to do with being dry which made it no longer an environmental threat. For now I’m doing it this way. One of the great things here is that “community service” is done at the trash disposal sites and these things then get separated out and the state deals with them.