Fall is the perfect time to clear the shelves of anything worn-out, used-up or useless and prepare for a few months of inside-only projects. I recently hauled away a car load of hazardous and irregularly recyclable waste that had accumulated in my workshop, including:
old cellphones, chargers, cables and other recyclable electronic waste; (check out that old silver Ericsson–rockin’ bluetooth back in the day– and Ms. Bungalow’s favorite red Moto slider.)
fluorescent light bulbs, ballasted and unballasted;
aerosol cans, solvents, and stains;
and lots of old left-over paint.
We inherited a whole shelving unit of paint when we bought the house seven years ago. I held onto the paint for a time thinking it could be helpful for touch-ups or small jobs. Now the paint is old enough that I decided to just recycle anything that has lived here longer than me.
If you decide to do your own fall cleanout, check your local options for disposal and recycling of hazardous waste. Our waste program is very good here, so it was free for me to get rid of all of these items when I brought them to a county processing facility. (With the exception of the tire in the top of the paint can picture– that cost me $3.) Even if it costs a small fee, proper disposal and recycling of this kind of material keeps harmful mercury, lead, solvents and other nastys out of the ground and away from drinking water sources.
Cleaning out household hazardous waste = good homeowner.
Proper disposal of hazardous waste = good citizen.
So be a good citizen when you clean out your workshops, fellow DIYers.