Whether you’re finally modernizing or just have a few clunky Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) monitors and televisions taking up room and gathering dust, it’s important to understand the hazards they pose, especially if damaged. So, before you decide to move one around – and if you’re thinking about disposing of it yourself – it’s important to understand the hazards, proper disposal, and things to watch out for. [Read more…]
Why Fire Extinguishers Expire and What to Do with Them
Owning a fire extinguisher is a mark of a safe and well-planned household, but it doesn’t stop there. Beyond reading the instructions and properly placing the extinguisher (or more likely multiple fire extinguishers if you’re following best practices), is the knowledge that your extinguisher has a shelf life and will need to be replaced. It’s time to learn more about why fire extinguishers expire and how to dispose of them when they do. [Read more…]
Why Certain Cleaning Products are Hazardous
Everyone loves a clean home, but have you ever wondered what’s in those cleaning products? When people view what we accept, many are surprised to find that common cleaning products, especially heavy-duty cleaners, should not be disposed of at home and need to be brought in. Learn more about why certain cleaning products are hazardous, how to safely use them, and what to do when they are all used up. [Read more…]
Under the Hood: Dealing with Hazardous Waste from Cars
Whether you’re a do-it-yourselfer when it comes to automotive work on your car or just have a few spare bottles of car products for emergencies, chances are you’ve got a container of motor oil, antifreeze, coolant, or other products at home in the garage, maybe even including used oil and oil filters. Much of this is household hazardous waste and can’t be disposed of down the sink or into a garbage can. Learn how to deal with hazardous waste from cars.
Dealing with Used Motor Oil and Oil Filters
Changing your own oil is an easy way to save on automotive expenses and have full freedom of what to put in your car, but you need to handle it safely after use. Motor oil is toxic to animals and plants, including fish, where a quart of oil can contaminate up to a million gallons of water.
- Disposing of Used Motor Oil: Collect oil in a clean container with a screw cap, such as the original container. Return used oil for recycling to the store where you purchased it (they are required by MA law). You can also use the Used Oil Hotline: 617-556-1022.
- Draining Used Oil Filters: If you also replace your own filters, take special care with the used filter: undrained oil filters can contain up to 12 ounces of motor oil. Before disposal, you should drain them: puncture the domed part of the oil filter with a sharp tool and drain, collecting the oil.
Dealing with Automotive Coolant and Antifreeze
For many MA vehicles, their coolant and antifreeze are one-and-the-same, including hybrid brands and 50/50 ratios. Coolant is toxic, and due to its sweet smell and bright color, can be a hazard to both animals and small children. Spent antifreeze may contain metals from the engine, such as lead, zinc, and copper. Spent coolant should be kept in a sealed container and kept out of reach of children and pets.
Before pouring coolant down the drain, you’ll need to get approval from your wastewater treatment facility, as antifreeze can disturb the biological action of sewage treatment and septic systems. Your local service station or repair garage may accept spent antifreeze. Note that even more environmentally friendly propylene glycol may contain the same car pollutants after use and should be disposed of similarly.
Learn more about automotive batteries in our blog, Everything You Need to Know About Hazardous Battery Disposal!
At NEDT, we help New England residents dispose of their household hazardous waste when other options aren’t available or feasible, but we think the first step should always be taking steps at home to be safe. Learn more about dealing with household products with our Fact Sheets. If you’re interested in drop-off or pick-up of hazardous household products, see our locations, contact us online, or call us at 1-866-769-1621.
What Hazardous Materials Are Not Accepted for Disposal?
Here at NEDT, we talk a lot about the kind of materials we accept. But, there are some things we have to turn away at the door and point you to other agencies. From the dangerous to the mundane, below are several categories of the most common types of materials and products that we and most other residential disposal companies won’t or can’t accept.
Generally speaking, if it poses an immediate danger to you and those around you, even if safety measures are taken, it won’t be accepted at collection centers. Explosives cover a wide array of products but are commonly:
- Explosive chemicals and compounds
- Shock sensitive materials
Reactive Chemicals and Materials
Reactive chemicals also tend to be restricted if they can undergo sudden state changes (condensation, decomposition, or polymerization), become self-reactive under shock, pressure, or temperature changes, or react vigorously with water to release a lethal gas (like cyanide). This is also why unidentified compressed gas cylinders are not accepted.
Asbestos and Radioactive Materials
If you need special equipment beyond glove and eye protection to handle these substances, chances are they shouldn’t be going to a household hazardous waste company. This includes airborne hazards like asbestos, as well as radioactive materials.
Biological waste is generally not accepted at NEDT and other collection centers. Examples include used sharps, live culture dishes, and anything contaminated with blood.
Major Appliances (White Goods) Including CFCs
While NEDT accepts electronics, including Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) monitors, they do not accept large appliances – so-called “white goods.” Also, fridges and ACs that contain chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) are not accepted.
Commercial Hazardous Waste & Products
Lastly, businesses cannot bring in their hazardous waste for disposal to one of these disposal centers. Instead, they must follow laws from the EPA and their statewide designated agency to dispose of commercial hazardous waste. NEDT does participate in MA’s VSQG (Very Small Quantity Generator) program. Learn more and if you can apply in this blog, Small Business Hazardous Waste: MA’s VSQG Requirements.
If some of the hazardous waste you want to bring in falls under one of these categories, learn about your options with our Fact Sheets as the MassDEP website. Learn more about what we accept and plan your trip to NEDT’s Household Hazardous Products Collection Centers today. We also provide pick up services: contact us today or call us at 866-769-1621.
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