We may not think of our household waste products as 'hazardous' but many products are defined as hazardous household waste when we dispose of them.
Those almost empty bottles and containers can hold significant amounts of waste products that the EPA has deemed as hazardous and requires special disposal practices. And this can be a bit challenging for many homeowners and others.
What Do They Mean by 'Hazardous' Waste Exactly?
One simple definition of household hazardous waste is provided here,
Household hazardous waste is the discarded, unused, or leftover portion of household products containing toxic chemicals. These wastes CANNOT be disposed of in regular garbage. Any product which is labeled WARNING, CAUTION, POISONOUS, TOXIC, FLAMMABLE, CORROSIVE, REACTIVE or EXPLOSIVE should be considered hazardous.
The problem is that household hazardous wastes cannot be handled like other kinds of garbage. If they end up in landfills, for example, buried wastes can filter down through the soil and eventually contaminate groundwater.
Dumping these HHW liquids down your sinks at home is a bad idea, as well. Plumbing systems can be damaged when corrosive chemicals are put down the drain. Also, burning hazardous wastes at incineration plants can simply spread any toxins over a larger area by releasing them into the air.
And you never want to dump them in your backyard or some other outdoor space as pouring any hazardous liquids on the ground can poison soil, plants, wildlife and water.
Some examples of common products that are considered Household Hazardous Waste once they are disposed of include the following:
[Images courtesy of StopWaste.org]One waste management source noted the following as items that cannot typically be picked up by municipal or commercial residential trash collection providers:
- Automotive products: antifreeze, fluids, motor oil, oil filters, gasoline, polish and waxes
- Batteries: home and vehicle batteries
- Electronics: TVs, computers, laptops, cell phones, printers, fax machines, MP3 players,
- Fluorescent light bulbs and compact fluorescent lamps (CFL)
- Mercury containing devices: thermometers and thermostats
- Paint products: oil-based, latex and spray paints, caulk, wood preservative and wood stain
- Garden chemicals: pesticides, herbicides, fertilizer and insecticides
- Sharps: syringes, needles and lancets
- Swimming pool chemicals
- Other household chemicals: toilet bowl cleaner, shower/tile cleaner, and carpet cleaner
In addition, other common waste items that should not be put in the household trash include medicines and prescriptions, ammunition or explosives, incandescent light bulbs, car tires, fuel,
and devices such as smoke detectors.
According to one source, it is important to remember that bottles and containers that may be empty should still be disposed of in a safe manner because of residue that remains in the container.
And, when it comes to managing disposal, perhaps the easiest and best way to deal with household hazardous wastes is through reducing and recycling. It is best to try and reduce the number of hazardous chemicals you have around your house at one time through a municipal hazardous waste collection event, if possible.
Getting Rid of Household Hazardous Waste the Right Way
It's important to know that not only can these hazardous waste products not be picked up by your local garbage collection service, but that private junk and waste removal companies such as Junk King cannot pick them up either.
It's simply the law and it does leave homeowners with a potential problem many times.
However, the good news is that, along with reducing the number of products in your home that are considered potential HHW items, there are ways to legally dispose of what you already have.
Keep in mind that laws regulating the removal and disposal of HHW varies from state to state and even county to county.
So, the first steps we recommend are to:
- Search online how to dispose of hazardous waste in your county or city
- Call your closest hazardous waste collection facility. (An online will provide results for a hazardous waste collection site near you)
- Try to recycle as many items or materials as possible such as old motor oil, used batteries, and even electronic waste, or e-waste
Other online resources for information on proper disposal and recycling guidelines are:
Until the day comes when technology and product innovation brings us all non-toxic products for our homes, there will always be a need for proper disposal of household hazardous waste.
And, when it comes to other household waste that's too much for your rubbish bins, you can always rely on Junk King to provide you with affordable and reliable residential junk removal services. Plus you can have the peace of mind that as much of your junk as possible will be recycled when we haul it away for you because being "green" is at the heart of what we do!
Household Waste and Residential Junk Removal: We Make It Easy
Of course, we can't take your household hazardous waste, or HHW, but we do have an affordable and efficient option for disposing all of your other junk and waste items.
All you need do is give us a call at Junk King.
Junk King provides residential junk hauling services to remove any and all of your household junk. And this includes anything from your yard, your garage, and even any excess or bulky trash and garbage. At Junk King, we have the expertise and professional teams that can remove large and heavy appliances such as refrigerators down stairways or up from the basement and even out through your garage.
Whatever your junk is or how much you have, Junk King can help you get it out of the way. We provide an eco-friendly junk removal service to help you get rid of any unwanted junk, large trash items, or any old furniture and appliances.
Our professional and insured appliance disposal team will show up at your home and we'll call you 15 to 30 minutes before we arrive on site. Once we're there we can give you a free estimate based on how much room your junk takes up in our truck. You point and we haul your unwanted items into our junk removal trucks, with no hidden fees.
So, ready to take care of all your residential junk removal? t’s as simple as 1, 2, 3.