Leftover paint accounts for nearly 85% of all the waste material received by the Dane County Clean Sweep program on an annual basis. Over 1/2 of all the waste material received annually is latex paint, and management of this non-hazardous material consumes nearly 1/3 of our annual budget.
In order to sustain our program amidst rising disposal costs and dwindling public funds, it is necessary that we place an increased emphasis on latex paint management at the point of consumption.
Taking your latex paint to Clean Sweep for disposal should be your option of last resort. If you find you absolutely cannot solidify and dispose of latex paint waste on your own, Clean Sweep will still accept it, subject to the following conditions:
If you have nearly full cans of latex paint in good condition, don't waste them! Clean Sweep will accept them for placement into our free Product Exchange Program.Clean Sweep Product Exchange
First, check the label to determine what type of paint you have.
Oil or solvent-based paints and stains are combustible and present different hazards. Look on the label for the words 'oil' or 'alkyd' and directions that specify to clean up or thin with mineral spirits or paint thinner. Left-over oil or solvent-based paints, whether liquid or solid, should be taken to the Dane County Clean Sweep Facility for proper disposal.
Never dispose of oil- or solvent-based paints and stains in your trash.
Latex paints are non-hazardous and soluble in water. Look for the words 'latex' or 'acrylic' and directions that specify to clean up or thin with water. Because latex paint is non-hazardous, it can be disposed of with your regular trash as long as it is completely solidified.
Never dispose of liquid paints in your trash.
Several methods to properly solidify latex paint are:
Once the latex paint has hardened or solidified, it can be disposed of with your regular trash. However, make sure the lids are removed from the paint cans when you set them at your curb, or when you place them in your garbage bin if you have weekly trash pickup.
If you live in the City of Madison, dried latex materials can be brought to the east or west Streets Department full-service drop-off sites for disposal.