Custom Painting Inc
Residential & Commercial Painting Blog
Feb 13

Written by: Mark Thissell
2/13/2015 12:14 PM 

House Painting in Pleasanton: Properly Dispose of PaintWhen you're done house painting in Pleasanton, you may wonder what to do with a half-used can of paint. There are two options: you can keep the paint in case you need it again for touch-ups or you can dispose of it. Depending on the type of paint you have, you may be able to reuse it; otherwise, you'll most likely treat this as hazardous waste.

If you decide to dispose of paint after finishing house painting in Pleasanton, there are proper and acceptable ways to do it. Your city or state may have different approaches when it comes to the disposal of unused latex (water-based) or oil-based paints.

How to dispose of latex paints

Since latex paints are safer compared to solvent-based counterparts, you may consider saving them for a later project. They may not be the exact color you will need the next time you do house painting in Pleasanton, but you could use them as a base color or for touchups. If you decide to keep your unused paints for future use, you must have the can tightly sealed and placed in a cool, dry storage area. Be sure to keep them out of reach from children and pets.

However, if feel you don't have any use of leftover latex paint, consider taking them to a community paint recycling program. You may also check with area organizations such as schools, municipalities, and waste haulers. They might need your unused paints for their community projects. Besides, you are doing a good deed to others, which sounds really nice.

Speaking of good deeds, you can also give the leftover paints for free on Craigslist, where many people are on the lookout for free stuff.

If you can't reuse or recycle it, throw the paint away. But hold on, you just don't throw it away!  Here are the proper and safe ways to discard of unused paints (especially if they're the traditional latex paints):

  • If you plan to pour the extra unused paint into a drain, that's a flagrant no-no. Not only this is illegal, but it also poses a harmful health risk for people, animals, and the environment. Besides, it can damage the pipes and affect the water supply.
  • Likewise, don't pour paint onto the ground, as it is harmful to the soil. It is also important not to pour it into any bodies of water. This is hazardous to the water as well as the animals, plants and other organisms living in it.
  • Consider buying a waste paint hardener. It comes in a powdered form and is mixed with paint, which will cause the paint to harden within hours. Once hardened, the paint will be easier and safer to dispose of.

Once you've properly removed the paint, what would you do with the paint can? You may recycle it, or throw it away. If you decide to reuse or recycle the paint can, allow the empty can to dry completely, and then you can reuse it. If you have an inch (or more) of dried paint in the can, then it's safe to throw it away.

How to dispose of oil-based paints

Oil-based paints are more hazardous when compared to water-based paints. Some caution should be involved when discarding them.

First, check the can's label to see if there are any harmful ingredients in the paint, such as lead. As with latex paints, unused oil-based paints should not be poured into a drain. It is hazardous and illegal. Old oil-based paints should be taken to a hazardous waste disposal facility. To speed up the process of discarding oil-based paints, mix any absorbent material (such as unused concrete mix or sawdust) into the leftover paint. Then let the paint air dry in the can.

After you have disposed of the paint, throwing away cans which used to contain oil-based paints is also a bit tricky as discarding the paints themselves. You just can't throw away cans into the trash or send them to the dump. Not only this is illegal, but it is a hazardous risk for people, animals, and the environment. There is no other right way to dispose of paint cans than to bring them to the hazardous waste facility.

Safety is always the number one priority in any house painting job that we do. Safety should not only be applied in the prepping of surfaces and the painting itself, but also in cleaning and disposal of wastes that have been left over from the job. Proper disposal of unused paints and their cans is important not only for your own health and safety, but also the health and safety of your pets, your community, and the whole environment as well. Consider this the time next time you are house painting in Pleasanton.


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Residential & Commercial Painting Services, Custom Molding Installation, Acoustic Ceiling Removal by Custom Painting, Inc. – We are a Licensed and Insured Provider working across the Bay Area, the East Bay, San Ramon, Danville, Livermore, Fremont, Pleasanton, Concord, Walnut Creek, Lathrop, and Manteca.

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