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What's accepted and what's not accepted at hazardous waste collection sites

Common hazardous products—like oil-based paint, motor oil, fluorescent light bulbs, and pesticides—can be dropped off at collection sites. You can find a full list of accepted items in our product search tool.

Collection facilities do not accept special wastes such as latex paint, tires, electronics, or medications. To learn more about how to safely dispose of these items, call the Haz-Waste Help Line at 206-296-4692, or look up the item on our product search tool.

Limits and restrictions for hazardous waste drop-off

The following limits apply at all hazardous waste facilities:

No latex or water-based paint

Total waste:

- 50* gallons per residential customer per day
*Gasoline, motor oil, and antifreeze is limited to a maximum of 25 gallons per day

- 25 gallons per visit and a maximum of four visits per year for eligible businesses

 Container size cannot be larger than 5 gallons

Containers must weigh less than 60 pounds (lbs) 

Fluorescent tubes or bulbs: Limit 10 per vehicle 

Batteries:

- Limit 5 car/auto batteries per trip

- 50-pounds (lbs) max for all batteries

- Sort batteries by type and tape or bag them**
** Business customers must sort batteries by type and secure (tape) the terminals

-  Laboratory chemicals, organic peroxides, and highly hazardous or unusual wastes must be pre-approved (more details below)

-  Marine flares: Limit 10. Once our flare container is full, no more flares may be accepted until the container is emptied

-  No flares are accepted at Wastemobile

-  No professional grade pesticides or herbicides 

-  No unlabeled or unknown wastes

Laboratory chemicals, organic peroxides, and highly hazardous or unusual wastes

Laboratory chemicals, organic peroxides, and highly hazardous or unusual wastes must be pre-approved. To obtain approval, email a list of your laboratory chemicals, including the chemical names, concentrations, and volumes to haz.waste@kingcounty.gov.

Safety tips for transporting your hazardous waste

- Don't mix or combine products
- Keep products in their original containers if possible
- Label products that are not marked
- Secure products so they won't tip or leak
- Don't transport products in the passenger compartment of your vehicle
- Cover and tie down your load

How to dispose of latex or water-based paint

Dry latex or water-based paint can go in the trash. Follow these steps to safely get rid of it safely:

  1. If there is less than an inch of paint in the can, remove the lid and air dry. 
  2. If there is more than an inch of paint in the can, mix the paint with cat litter and let it solidify. You can also use a paint hardener according to directions.
  3. Throw the can of dried paint in the garbage. Remove the lid, but do not take the paint out of the can.

You can also recycle unwanted latex paint, water-based stains, and clear finishes at any Take it Back Network paint recycling location. There is a fee for this service.  

Oil-based paint is hazardous and should be dropped off at one of our convenient disposal locations. 

How to dispose of unwanted medication

There are over 100 secure medicine drop-boxes at participating retail pharmacies, hospitals, clinics, and law enforcement offices in King County. There is no cost to residents to use this service. Find a drop-box near you.  

Mail-back envelopes are available for residents who are home-bound or have limited mobility. Request a free mail-back envelope. 

Prescription and over-the-counter medicines should not be flushed down the toilet or put in the trash. Returning your unwanted medicines to a take-back program keeps our kids, families, and communities safe.  

How to dispose of electronics

In King County, electronics cannot be thrown away or dropped off at household disposal facilities. They must be taken to special recycling centers.  

Residents can take computers, monitors, laptops, and TVs to authorized E-Cycle Washington collection sites for free. 

Visit the Take if Back Network’s website for more information. 

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