Waste Paint & Art Supplies

Some paints and other art materials contain hazardous waste which, when not properly handled, pose both safety and environmental hazards.

Waste Paint

  • Waste oil and water base paint cannot be poured down sink drains or disposed of in the normal trash.
  • All waste paint must be collected in the waste paint collection drum located in your work area.
  • Both oil and water base paint can be collected in the same drum.
  • If you do not have a waste collection drum, please contact the Facilities Department.

Waste Paint Thinner and other Solvents
All paint thinner and other solvent waste cannot be drain disposed of, thrown in the trash or evaporated, and must also be disposed of in the paint collection drum. This includes any rinse material from cleaning brushes or other items contaminated with oil base paint.

Latex Paint Rinse Water
Rinse water from cleaning brushes, rollers and other items contaminated with latex paint can be drain disposed as long as the paint did not contain heavy metals, lead or mercury. Most paints currently sold do not contain these materials, but if you suspect they do, check the container label or the Material Data Safety Sheet. Contact the Facilities Department for additional assistance.

Materials considered Non-Hazardous
The following can be disposed of in the normal trash:

  • Completely dry painting instruments, tarps, and other items
  • Aerosol cans only if completely empty
  • Completely empty and dry paint cans
  • Completely empty paint thinner or solvent containers less than five (5) gallons.
  • Latex or water-based paint is non-hazardous and may be disposed of in your trash if it is dried or solidified.

All other partially full paint, solvent or hazardous material containers should be disposed of through the Facilities Department.

Proper Management of Paint Waste Collection Drums

  • The Facilities Department will supply waste collection drums for all work areas requiring them.
  • Once the drum is placed into service it should be labeled with a Hazardous Waste Tag.
  • The drum should be kept closed when not being used.
  • Once the drum is full, contact the Facilities Department to remove the full drum and supply a replacement.
  • Drums, even if not full, should remain in a work area no longer than 90 days.

Waste Minimization
In order to reduce the impacts of waste disposal on the environment and to reduce LSCS waste disposal costs please try to minimize the generation of hazardous waste by:

  • Trying to use water base paint instead of oil base paint whenever possible.
  • Buying only the quantity of material that you need to complete your project.
  • Sharing left over paint or other materials with others in your department before disposing of them.