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Disposing of Hazardous Materials that Exist in Every Home

By Craig Schill

GreenEriePA Writer

What Materials are "Hazardous Materials?"
There are more hazardous materials in your home than you might think. Just because an item doesn't require a sealed suit to be handled doesn't mean it couldn't be potentially harmful or dangerous if disposed of improperly. Key words that identify household hazardous waste include:

  • Caution
  • Toxiccans
  • Danger
  • Flammable
  • Warning
  • Corrosive
  • Explosive
  • Reactive
  • Combustible
  • Poisonous
  • Hazardous household materials

Some examples of hazardous materials you might find in your home on any given day include:

  • paints and solvents
  • batteries
  • car tireUsed tires
  • ammunition
  • pesticides
  • electronics like TVs, cell phones, and computers
  • radioactive waste
  • cleaning agents
  • thermometers and lights that contain mercury
  • aerosol cans
  • motor oilantifreeze

Because of the dangers posed by hazardous materials, it is best to store them in proper containers and to dispose of them as intended. This prevents leakage into the environment and keeps you and your family safe.

Why Should I Properly Dispose of My Hazardous Waste?

  • Disposing of this waste allows you to de-clutter your garage or basement.
  • Disposal of hazardous waste is much safer than leaving it.
  • Proper disposal prevents harmful leakage, which can have severe impacts on your environment.
  • Hazardous materials threaten our water, soil, and air.
  • Some hazardous items can be recycled into other materials or incinerated for useful energy.
  • You could receive a substantial fine for improper storage and disposal of the waste.

Photos courtesy of Carolyn McIntyre.