Here are five ways to reduce the amount of hazardous waste generated in your home and the time you have to spend disposing of it.
1. Clean Safer
You don’t bake with bleach, but did you know you don’t have to clean with it either? Many ingredients you cook with can also be used to clean your home. Think lemon, vinegar, and baking soda. For cleaning recipes, visit: smchealth.org/safercleaning
2. Rethink Pesticides
Swap toxic pesticides for less-toxic alternatives. Look for this logo when purchasing pest control products at your local hardware store. For more information, visit: ourwaterourworld.org
3. Ask for Re-Refined
When getting your next oil change, ask for re-refined oil. Re-refined oil is used motor oil that has been given a new life by being recycled and reprocessed. It’s even better than virgin oil because it saves the planet from having to deplete a non-renewable natural resource: fossil fuels.
4. Purchase Rechargeables
Save thousands of single-use batteries by switching a few out for the rechargeable variety. Rechargeable batteries may cost more upfront, but last longer and can save you money in the long run.
5. Look into LEDs
The next time your light burns out, consider switching to more energy efficient and mercury-free LED lights. LEDs also last longer than compact fluorescent lights (CFLs).
Dispose of Hazardous Waste Properly
Used, expired, unwanted, or leftover hazardous products don’t belong in the trash. Visit: smchealth.org/hhw to find out where these items go.
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Can you dispose of beauty products such as perfumes, lotions, oils?
Please refer to smchealth.org/general-information/accepted-waste to find out what items are accepted for safe management at our Household Hazardous Waste Facility. Thank you!
Can you buy re-refined oil in stores or is it only sold to oil change businesses?
Re-refined motor oil can be purchased online if you change your own motor oil. When you’re ready to recycle your used motor oil and filter, check out smchealth.org/usedoil for a list of over 60 drop off locations. Thank you for the question!
San Mateo County Environmental Health Services