Disposal of Hazardous Waste

Household hazardous waste disposal is a growing problem facing citizens throughout Illinois, and in the country. Hazardous waste materials can be found in the kitchen, bathroom, workroom, garage, lawn, or garden. Improper disposal or use of hazardous materials can lead to contamination of the soil, water or air. 

The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) advises everyone to use and dispose of hazardous product with great care and in accordance with the information printed on the label. Items such as fertilizers, oil-based paint, paint thinner, gasoline, oil and cleaning products should be used only according to their guidelines and in the proper amounts. The potential for danger, contamination and injury can be reduced by using less hazardous and non-hazardous products. 

If you have household hazardous waste in your home that needs disposal, store the item in a safe, well-ventilated area until the material can be taken to a Household Hazardous Waste Collection drop-off site. These collection days are sponsored periodically by the IEPA and held throughout the year at various locations in the Chicagoland region. Any questions or concerns related to disposal or storage of household hazardous waste should be directed to the IEPA at 217-785-8604.

Acceptable Waste
Acceptable wastes: oil-based paints, paint thinners, herbicides, insecticides, pesticides, insecticides, old gasoline, cleaning products, household batteries, used motor oil, drain cleaners, lawn chemicals, solvents, antifreeze, hobby chemicals, aerosol paints and pesticides, fluorescent lamp bulbs. 

Unacceptable Waste
Unacceptable wastes: agricultural wastes, business/commercial sector wastes, explosives, fireworks, lead acid batteries, propane tanks, smoke detectors, farm machinery oil, fire extinguishers, institutional wastes.

Latex paint is not accepted at Household Hazardous Waste Collections. It is not Household Hazardous Waste. It simply needs to be dried out before disposal with other garbage. To solidify latex paint, use equal parts of paint and either crushed corn cobs, shredded newspaper or cat litter.