We think about spring cleaning, but what about fall cleaning?
With autumn around the corner and the kids back in school, many homeowners are actually beginning their “nesting” process to get their homes cozy and winter-ready. While spring may seem like the only time of year that homeowners start to purge, that’s not the case.
As you start to get your home organized and ready for more time indoors thanks to cooler weather, there are some things you shouldn’t be throwing out.
In our homes we have lots of small, toxic items that we wouldn’t think twice about chucking into the garbage. However, a lot of these items are actually illegal to throw away. You can dispose of them in a different method, as we will explain. Some can even be recycled!
Can’t think of any potential no-no’s for the landfill? Here are a few:
4 Things To Keep Out of Your Trash
In many states, it’s actually ILLEGAL to throw paint in your trashcan.
Oil-based paints, varnishes, and paint removers or strippers are all considered to be household hazardous waste (HHW). This means they contain chemicals that are harmful to humans, animals, and the environment.
Find a recycling center on Earth911.com or by calling 1-800-CleanUp.
Different batteries require different methods of disposal, but none can go in a recyclable bin.
- Rechargeable batteries can be recycled at participating retail stores like Walmart or Ikea, or Staples
- Alkaline and zinc carbon batteries should be dropped off at an HHW facility
- Watch batteries, which contain silver oxide, can be recycled at jewelry stores
Do some research to see where your batteries can go and keep them out of landfills.
While not particularly harmful, they do take up a LOT of space in landfills and have so many great uses when repurposed or recycled.
That’s why 48 states have made it illegal to throw them away. Many mechanics offer “take-back” programs or will likely be able to direct you to a recycling center.
4. Sharp Items
For obvious reasons, needles, syringes, and other sharp objects are dangerous to sanitation workers and should never be tossed out with trash.
Instead, get a sharp objects container, which you can find at most pharmacies. Or, dispose of these items in an empty laundry detergent container and be sure to seal it securely.
Go ahead and write “HAZARDOUS MATERIALS” and then drop them off at a Hazardous Waste Drop-Off center.
Depending on where you live, there may be more items that are illegal to toss out in your city or state. So check with your local waste management and hazard maintenance for a complete, updated list.
These items can be harmful to the environment and to other people. Therefore our hope in sharing this information is to ensure you and your loved ones are safe and healthy in your home and community.
Head over to our blog to check out the other home safety resources we’ve created just for you!
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