Done Painting? Don’t Dump It!

If you’ve finished painting your house or trimming your gutters for the summer and are looking to clear out your garage for the winter months, make sure that you dispose of your paint products properly.

Disposing of paint improperly can do serious damage to your local environment. Paint is the number one thing that people bring to waste collection sites and there are many other things that can be done with leftover paint that you might have.

1. Save your paint for touch-ups: You never know when you might need to put an extra coat somewhere or realize that you ‘missed a spot’.

2. Ask neighbors, friends and family members if they are in need of paint.

3. Take your paint to a local community or non-profit organization: Some community sites provide swap tables where paint can be left for others to take. Earth 911 has information about sites that give you this opportunity.

4. Contact your local hazardous material resource center which might have additional information on how to recycle the paint.

5. Use the sawdust method. EHow mentions, “As a last option, if you must dispose of latex or water-based paint, fill a paper bag with sawdust, sand or cat litter. Pour remaining latex into the bag. Wait for the paint to be absorbed by the sawdust, sand or cat litter. Dispose of the paper bag with your household trash”.

Paint is an important resource that can become hazardous if we do not take care of it properly. Ask an attendant where you buy the paint about how to efficiently measure how much paint you think you’ll need. You can always come back for more later.

Other ideas on how to dispose of paint in a ‘green’ way? Leave a comment below.

2 thoughts on “Done Painting? Don’t Dump It!”

  1. There is a place out Hwy 22 that gives away recycled paint for free. They have lots and some great colors, and it is free. My friend’s mom painted her barn, fence and shed with recycled paint from them and it looks wonderful. The paint was of good quality too. She wasn’t able to get enough to do all 3 projects in the same color, so she did the barn and shed in one color and the fence in a nice accent to match. They look fantastic. My mom needs to paint her house and can’t afford a lot, so I am taking her out there to look at the free recycled paint. I guess it’s been there for years, but I just heard about it last summer for the first time. What a great way to help people and be green.

  2. Tammy,
    Thanks for the information. I will have to check it out, because we have some painting that needs to be done. For all those Oregonians out there, this is great.

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