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Solving Your Used Oil Problem in 6 Steps

July 3, 2014

Many small businesses handle or generate used oil. Whether it’s generated from commercial or industrial operations or the maintenance of vehicles or equipment (or something else altogether) makes no difference. Once you have used oil on-site, you’re probably going to wonder what you should do with it.

Keep in mind that used oil isn’t just waste. It can be a valuable resource; used oil can be cleaned of contaminants and recycled over and over again, for the same job or a completely different task.

So, you know a little about oil, and you have some on hand. Here’s what you do next:

  1. Make sure that it is stored correctly in a clean, leak-proof plastic container with a tight lid.
  2. Make sure that everyone within your business (yourself included) understands that used oil should never be disposed of illegally – either by pouring it down the drain, into the ground, or into lakes or wetlands. It is also illegal to burn oil as a disposal method. As with most things in life, the easiest option is far from the right choice.
  3. Look into Certified Collection Centers. Whether or not they will accept all of your used oil will depend on how much you have, and how much they’re willing to take. Smaller generators usually don’t have issues here, but if you’re worried about the quantity it’s prudent to call in advance. You might even be able to benefit from the same occasional curbside pick-up that the general public does.
  4. If you’re a business that generates larger quantities, you might need to contact a certified hauler or transporter to handle the issue for you. Though this option will cost you some money, you will rest easier knowing that you’ve arranged fully compliant transportation and disposal.
  5. If you generate significant quantities of used oil, you can also consider contacting companies that are willing to pay you for it. Many companies will visit your site and test your oil prior to collection to ensure that the used oil is not hazardous.
  6. If your used oil problem is a recurring one, it’s a good idea to locate a business that you feel comfortable working with in the long-term.

Keep in mind: contaminated oil is a different story. Many collection centers won’t accept oil that has been contaminated with fluids such as solvents, water, gasoline or antifreeze. Do yourself a favor and remember to never mix your used oil with anything else – you’ll thank yourself later. If you do end up with contaminated used oil on your hands, companies like Hazardous Waste Experts can help you figure out a way to dispose of it in a way that is both safe and compliant.

If you need help handling your used oil or require assistance with hazardous waste removal, Hazardous Waste Experts has got you covered. Give us a call at 800-936-2311 to speak with an expert.

Article by Jessica Hope

Photo Credit: Theen … via Compfight cc

Disposal of hazardous waste doesn’t have to be painful.