How to Properly Dispose of Strange Items

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Proper Disposal

Does this sound familiar? You’re cleaning through your garage or basement, when you come across a strange item that you want to toss. Whether it’s an old can of paint or a box of old blacklights from Halloween, you know you don’t need to keep these things. But, then suddenly you’re struck with the realization that you have no idea how to actually get rid of them. Can you just throw them out? Do you need to take them somewhere? We’ve all been there. Luckily, I’ve got the answers for some of those strange items here. Now you’ll know exactly how to dispose of that random junk!

1. Cans of paint

If you have old cans of paint that you’re looking to discard, you want to know the rules that apply to throwing out paint. Oil-based paints are typically considered hazardous waste. So, you’re safer to call your local Household Hazardous Waste facility and ask them about their drop-off schedule and rules. Latex paints can be tossed in the trash, but you’ll want to go about it the right way. Pour the paint into a box with shredded paper or kitty litter and allow it to harden. Then, toss the entire box and recycle the can!

2. CFL Lightbulbs

Today, many people opt to use CFL lightbulbs in their home, due to their cost efficiency and environmental impact. But, because they contain mercury, they take extra care to dispose of. You don’t want to just toss them in the trash or dumpster, as they can shatter. So, you’re best to recycle your CFL bulbs. Visit search.Earth922.com to find out where you can recycle your bulbs!

3. Old televisions

Most people know that it’s illegal to leave an old t.v. out on the curb for trash pickup. So, how the heck do you get rid of the thing? Well, you have a few options. If the television is still in relatively good condition, you can sell it or donate it. If you simply want to get rid of it, you can take it to your local recycling center. You can also check out local electronic retailers. Many places, such as Best Buy, offer a free recycling program for televisions.

4. Thermometers

Many people have questions about how to properly dispose of thermometers. First, you need to determine your type of thermometer. If it’s an alcohol thermometer — the ones with the red liquid — it’s completely safe to throw in the trash. However, mercury thermometers should be transported in a sealed container to your local recycling center.

5. Batteries

Even though mercury has been phased out of batteries, many people still have questions about how to dispose of dead batteries. General-purpose and alkaline batteries can safely be tossed in with other household garbage. However, it’s not recommended that you throw out large groups of batteries at a time. Many dead batteries still have a bit of a charge left. So, tossing out a large group can bring these live batteries into contact with each other, which creates a safety risk.

6. Pesticides

Perhaps you have an old weed or pest killer left over in your garage that you want to get rid of. First, ask your neighbors if they have a use for your leftover pesticides. If not, call your local Household Hazardous Waste Facility. You should absolutely never pour leftover pesticides down your sink, into the toilet, or down a sewer drain.

It’s inevitable — when you’re cleaning, you may come across a few random items that you don’t know how to properly dispose of. This list should help you find the best methods of discarding your unwanted household items!

Kat Boogaard

Kat Boogaard

Kat Boogaard is a Midwest-based freelance writer and blogger who loves lending her voice to a variety of publications and organizations. When she manages to escape from behind her computer screen, she enjoys reading, babying her rescued terrier mutt and obsessively organizing her entire home.
Kat Boogaard
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About Kat Boogaard

Kat Boogaard is a Midwest-based freelance writer and blogger who loves lending her voice to a variety of publications and organizations. When she manages to escape from behind her computer screen, she enjoys reading, babying her rescued terrier mutt and obsessively organizing her entire home.