Disposal of old cans of paint......what do you do?

  Bazzaman 12:17 01 Sep 2016

I have a fair selection of old cans of paint to dispose of.

The local council dump (Sutton, Surrey) does not have facilities for this (they will take old water based paints that have solidified). They hand out leaflets for a free Hazardous Waste Collection Service operated by the City of London (for those not in the know, in simple terms the City of London is the authority for the Square Mile as opposed to the Greater London Authority [which covers 607 square miles] and the individual London borough authorities). This service is fair enough, but seems very inefficient in terms of going out to individual households to collect a few items. Would make much more sense if the local council dumps would take the waste and the City of London collects periodically from the council dumps.

Now this all sets me wondering what do others do. I would think that the vast majority just put such cans of paint in their non-recyclable rubbish.

And what do tradesmen (painters, decorators etc.) do. I can see that an awful lot goes into skips and just goes to landfill. Again, seems like a damn good argument for the council dumps to act as collection points for the City of London service.

  LastChip 12:34 01 Sep 2016

I take mine to the local tip for recycling. They have a skip just for old paint tins (whatever the type). A chap there opens them up, seems to identify the contents and tips the contents into the appropriate tank (I guess water based or oil based). The tins then get recycled.

  Quickbeam 15:05 01 Sep 2016

Put them on a shelf in the garage, and after 10 years mix them into a base layer to seal a wall before the next collection of half empty paint tins is started.

  iscanut 17:31 01 Sep 2016

Our local tip and recycle centre has a section for old paint and cans. Exeter!

  x123 20:56 01 Sep 2016

I have a selection of old hardwood door panels, I use old oil based paint for my Picasso sessions.

The wife then adds the results to the bonfire on Nov 5th.

  oresome 08:27 02 Sep 2016

I sometimes look at the old price labels and think, my goodness, how the price of paint has increased over the years.

To be fair I have in the past purchased paint at knock down prices with no particular purpose in mind and it then sits on the garage shelf for years unopened, hence the low initial price.

Our local council disposal yard accepts paint

  Bazzaman 10:00 02 Sep 2016

Thanks for the replies.

Makes me wonder if it is just in London that the local council tips don't take paint.

But still makes me think that (in areas like mine) there must be an awful lot of old paint that just goes with the non-recyclable rubbish (either in household bins or skips) and ends up in landfill (when it really shouldn't). I just can't see many bods taking advantage of the Hazardous Waste Collection Service I mentioned.

  cruiser2 16:16 02 Sep 2016

In part of Greater Manchester we can take paint tins as well as batteries, light bulbs including flourescent tubes, clothing, shoes, timber, plastic, soil, garden waste, cardboard etc. No charge for private individuals. Vans and firms have to get a permit. Plastic bags are taken to a local supermarket. We do not buy them but some food is wrapped in small ones

  Bazzaman 17:30 02 Sep 2016


Our local tip takes pretty much everything and is well organised - unfortunately they just don't like paint!

As I said earlier, it seems a crazy way to organise things. Very inefficient and likely to lead to fly-tipping or ending up in landfill.

  lotvic 16:44 04 Sep 2016

I've got same disposal conundrum, one solution I'm considering is to try my hand at painting a simple patterned mural on one side of garage. I could always repaint over it if it looks terrible.

  Bazzaman 17:22 04 Sep 2016

Actually, I've already painted the inside walls of the garage (a few years ago). Used a load of old light coloured / white emulsion. Just mixed it all together and sloshed it on. Makes the garage seem a lot cleaner and brighter.

As an aside, I painted the garage floor (with garage floor paint, believe it or not). Have to say it makes keeping the garge clean a whole lot easier. But you do need to prep it properly before painting. And I used Wilkinson's own brand - I'd say it's pretty good.

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