Paint is the most common household product that becomes household hazardous waste. Paint contains harmful substances that can be dangerous to our health and the environment if not used, stored, and disposed of properly.
Oil-based paint can be good for up to 15 years. Latex paint is usable if it is less than 10 years old and has not been repeatedly frozen and thawed. If the paint will mix when you stir it, it is probably usable.
The best way to dispose of paint is to use the paint. If you cannot use the paint, try giving it to someone who can:
- Theater groups
- Church groups
- Shelters for people in need
- Community organizations
- ReStore (call for specifications) (814) 353-2390
Storage\Disposal of Liquid Paint
When storing paint, make sure lids are on tight. Label the top of each can with the color name and date purchased.
Do not pour paint down household drains. Many of the chemicals in paint will not be treated by sewage treatment systems or septic systems.
Do not throw liquid paint in the trash. There is always the possibility that the paint will be released from the can. Then the paint could be exposed to certain chemicals and cause spontaneous combustion.
Solidify first, then dispose of paint. Paint is hazardous in its liquid form. If only a small amount of paint is left, simply remove the lid (outside, with good ventilation) and let dry. Then the can may be put out for trash disposal or if recycling is available, the can may be recycled with metal cans. If you have more than which would dry, there are various ways to dispose of paint.
Please Note: There is a difference between Latex Paint and Oil Based Paint.
Latex paint, when dry, may be disposed of in your regular trash. See ideas below to dry latex paint.
If you are simply overwhelmed with latex paint, the Recycling & Refuse Authority's Transfer Station is allowed to accept up to 5 gallons of latex paint per person per day. There is a $15.00 minimum charge for this service. Please note that the Recycling & Refuse Authority will not accept latex paint at our Household Hazardous Waste events.
Oil Based Paint.
Oil based paint, when dry, may be disposed of in your regular trash. See ideas below to dry oil based paint.
The Authority's Transfer Station will not accept oil based paint in liquid form. If you are simply overwhelmed with oil based paint, the Centre County Recycling & Refuse Authority holds a Household Hazardous Waste Collection each May. The Authority accepts oil based paint at this event.
Tips to dry paint:
- Get a sturdy cardboard box and fill with clay-based kitty litter, pour the paint onto the kitty litter and let dry. Then dispose of this dried mixture with your trash.
- Some local hardware and paint stores carry a paint solidifier. Simply purchase, follow directions and when paint is dried, put out for trash collection.