Household Product Disposal Guide - Open PRAIRIE
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Household Product Disposal Guide
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Cooperative Extension, "Household Product Disposal Guide" (2002). Extension Extra . Paper 23.
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Extt e n s i o n
Extt r a
E xE x 1024
U pdated A pril 2002
A griculture and
B iosystem s
C O L L E G E O F A G R IC U L T U R E & B IO L O G IC A L S C IE N C E S / S O U T H D A K O T A S T A T E U N IV E R S IT Y / U S D A
Household Product Disposal Guide
Use This Guide to Help Prevent Household Hazardous
Wastes. The products from a single home seem insignificant, but
when thousands of homes use similar products and dispose of
them down the drain or in the landfill, the combined effect
becomes a major concern due to ground and surface water contamination. Soil and air also may be adversely affected.
Chemicals are a way of life in most American homes. A typical
home may contain 100 to 200 products used for cleaning, painting, lubricating, disinfecting, etc. the house, yard, workshop, and
When used according to label directions, most household products pose little hazard to people or the environment. However,
these products may become hazardous when used, stored, or disposed of carelessly. Improper use may cause toxic health effects.
Improper storage may harm people or the environment. Some
chemicals, when released into the environment, cause water,
soil, or air pollution and may be toxic to people or animals.
Improper disposal allows these materials to enter the environment directly. Water may be polluted or wildlife killed, or chemicals may accumulate in the food chain of people or wildlife.
The products listed in this guide typically contain hazardous
materials. Hazardous materials may be toxic, ignitable, corrosive, or reactive (may explode during routine handling), alone or
in combination with other materials. A few precautions can prevent unused household products or containers from becoming
Remember . . . the best method of disposal is to use the product for its intended purpose.
• Use old products first, and think carefully before buying new
ones. Do you really need it or already have something similar?
• Buy just enough product to do the job or no more than will be
used during a reasonable period of time.
• Read the label and follow use, storage, and disposal directions
carefully, especially in homes with young children. (Watch for
signal words such as caution, warning, or danger. Store these
products out of reach of children and animals!)
• Keep leftover product in original, labeled container.
• Share unused materials with others if product is in original
container with a label.
• Locate firms for recycling oil, antifreeze, and batteries.
• Locate a hazardous waste collection or help organize one.
• Drain all containers thoroughly before disposal.
• Triple rinse all containers of water-soluble materials. Use rinse
water according to label.
• Use the joint collection program, offered statewide by the
Extension Service and the S.D. Department of Ag, to dispose
of waste pesticides (i.e. DDT, arsenic, etc.) and #2 plastic pesticide containers.
• Do not dump leftover products. It may be illegal and it contaminates the soil, water, and air.
• Do not burn used or leftover products. It may produce toxic
• Do not bury leftover products.
• Do not reuse pesticide or other chemical containers for other
• Do not mix chemical products or wastes.
• Do not put any liquids in the trash.
• Do not put toxic materials such as pesticides in the trash or
• Do not put products containing heavy metals (mercury, lead,
nickel, chromium, cadmium, etc.) such as rechargeable or mercury batteries in the trash.
• Do not permit wastes to enter unlicensed, unregulated landfills,
recyclers, or haulers, etc.
Adapted with permission from Kansas State University
Cooperative Extension Service.
This publication and others can be accessed electronically from the SDSU
College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences publications page, which is at
Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the USDA. Larry Tidemann, Director of Extension, Associate
Dean, College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences, South Dakota State University, Brookings. SDSU is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer (Male/Female)
and offers all benefits, services, and educational and employment opportunities without regard for ancestry, age, race, citizenship, color, creed, religion, gender, disability,
national origin, sexual preference, or Vietnam Era veteran status.
ExEx 1024 - pdf by CES. August 1994; updated April 2002.