The proper way to dispose of brake cleaner and other hazardous materials

It’s the time of year to have fun with the family, build carrot-nosed snowmen, and eat more chocolate than your sweet tooth can handle. It’s also the time of year to get all those Christmas decorations out of your garage. If you’re having trouble getting to all those boxes, you may need to clean out the garage.

However, be careful. Certain items in your garage cannot be simply placed at the curb for normal garbage collection. Items such as car batteries, old brake cleaner, pesticides and old oil should be disposed of properly in accordance with your local council rules and regulations.

Disposal of hazardous materials

Before disposing of any material that may be considered hazardous or harmful to human health or the health of the environment, please contact your local council. You can easily find your council name, phone number and website by visiting the official UK government website and entering your postcode or street and town information.

Your local council should be able to provide you with a detailed list of their recycling and disposal practices. For example, some may dispose of the painting for you, but will only pick it up on certain days of the month. Until then, you might want to figure out how to reduce the amount of waste in your garage so that piles of plastic oil bottles and leftover coolant don’t take up a lot of space and prevent you from reaching your holiday decorations.

  • refrigerant– In years past, you may have simply dumped your old coolant on the ground to control weeds around your home. Today, however, you know that this is no longer acceptable and is very harmful to the environment. So what do you do with all that leftover coolant? First, be sure to drain all of the coolant into a new drain pan so it doesn’t come in contact with the oil. Call different auto parts stores in your neighborhood. Some of these stores have their own coolant recycling machines, which distill the coolant. The shop can then add an additive to the coolant and it can be used like new.
  • paint thinner and gasoline– Do you have some gasoline or paint thinner in your garage? If there is only a small amount, there is an easy way to get rid of it. Find a warm, well-ventilated area out of the reach of little fingers and pets and leave it open until completely dry.
  • Brake fluid– When you bleed the brakes, catch the exhaust in a jar. Keep the bottle open for a few months (out of the reach of children, away from fire or sparks, and in an area where it cannot be tipped over). After a few months, it will have absorbed enough water from the air to lower its boiling point. Pour the brake fluid into a pan of kitty litter and set it aside for a couple of days. It only takes a few days for this hazardous material to evaporate.
  • brake cleaner– Brake cleaner can be very dangerous to both your health and the environment if it is not disposed of correctly. Never dispose of it down your sewer, storm drain, or kitchen sink. Once you catch your brake cleaner, it will actually evaporate after a while, leaving you with just the dirt and grime you cleaned off your brakes. However, it is important to contact your local council and ensure that this practice is allowed before attempting it.

When you need to clean out your garage this holiday season, be sure to properly dispose of hazardous materials like brake cleaner. Before you put it on the sidewalk, contact your local council and find out the best ways to dispose of harmful materials.