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Typically, no one wants to dispose of household cleaning products. If you’re anything like us, you’ll want to use up every last drop before recycling or discarding the empty packaging with other household waste. However, there are times when you’re going to want to dispose of cleaning products, as you may find that a particular formula just doesn’t work for your needs. So, how do you dispose of household cleaning products without damaging the environment? In this article, we examine how to safely dispose of cleaning products that you no longer use, and whether or not they can simply be poured down the drain.

Use it up or give it away

The most obvious option? Use it up! While you may not prefer a particular brand or formula, you can usually find a use for a cleaning product. If not, you’ll almost always be able to find someone else who can.

The American Cleaning Institute tells us why the best option is to use up your cleaning products or give them away:

“The way that makes the best environmental and economic sense is to use it up! If you can’t, consider giving the product to a friend or organization that can. Just be sure to keep the product in its original container with the label intact.”

Read the label for proper disposal

If you’re set on disposing of your cleaning products, read the label before throwing it into the bin. No matter what, your cleaning product’s container will not be considered recyclable with product still inside of it, and most labels will advise you on how to dispose of its contents.

Earth 911 explains why you should consult the cleaning product’s label before dumping it down the drain:

“Still can’t find anyone who wants your household cleaners? Typically, cleaning products can be disposed of just like other normal household waste. But before you dispose of them, be sure to read the label to see if there are any specific disposal instructions. For example, many antibacterial cleaning products contain triclosan, which could contribute to the antibiotic resistance of bacteria, so it should not be poured down your drain.”

What to do if there are no instructions


No instructions on your cleaning product’s container? Then it’s probably okay to flush it down the drain. While it’s true that some cleaners should not be poured down the drain, the majority of them can be without any environmental repercussions.

Home Storage Solutions tells us more about why most household cleaners are safe to be flushed down the toilet or poured down the drain:

“If there are no directions about disposal the general rule is that you can flush the remnants of most cleaners down the drain, or throw the items directly into the trash. I know that because of some of the chemicals involved many times people are reluctant to just put these items in the trash, but trust me, I did a lot of research about this. Most of these items are not considered hazardous waste, so they don’t need special disposal rules.”

We offer a wide variety of waste disposal options, including how to safely dispose of cleaning products, with services readily available online. Reach out to us to see what we can offer you.

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