Why Aerosol Can Disposal is So Important

Aerosol is part of our everyday lives. Spray paint, cooking sprays, and just about anything else in a metal can under pressure utilizes aerosol to deliver their product out of the can in an efficient, consistent manner. The real question is, what do I do with the aerosol can after I’m done with it? Many people just toss these items into the trash but you should shy away from tossing your aerosol cans with the rest of the trash, here’s why.

Why Aerosol Can Disposal is So Important

There are definitely different degrees of aerosol can disposal. Full or partially full cans are considered hazardous waste by many local municipalities due to the contents of the can being under extreme pressure. Some aerosol cans also contain hazardous waste that can be dangerous for local community. Let’s look at different types of aerosol can disposal so you can know what to do in different situations.

Empty Aerosol Can

Unless the aerosol can indicates that it is a hazardous waste, most empty aerosol cans are handled like typical metal recycling waste. Simply place the can with your other metals for recycling, do not modify the can, or remove anything.

Partially Full or Full Aerosol Cans

This is where it gets trickier. Full or partially full aerosol cans should be treated like hazardous waste because they are under high pressure. If the product is relatively safe such as cooking spray, simply manually empty the can but do not attempt to puncture or pry off the lid. If you cannot safely dispose of partially full or full aerosol can, contact your local hazardous waste recycling center. They can let you know exactly what to do with these objects in your area.

Hazardous Aerosol Cans

Aerosol cans that contain hazardous material should never be disposed of in the garbage. Contact your local hazardous waste recycling center and let them know what is in the can and how full it is. They can make recommendations to you about what to do with the can next.

So the next time your aerosol can sputters and dies, don’t toss it in the trash! Treat empty cans as normal steel or metal recycling and contact a local agency to find out what to do with partially full, full, or hazardous aerosol cans.

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