The US EPA defines household hazardous waste as:
“Hazardous products used and disposed of by residential as opposed to industrial consumers. Includes paints, stains, varnishes, solvents, pesticides, and other materials or products containing volatile chemicals that can catch fire, react or explode, or that are corrosive or toxic.”
Where to take your HHW
Norfolk residents are encouraged to take HHW to the following locations:
City of Norfolk Division of Waste Management, 1176 Pineridge Road, Monday through Saturday, 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Call 441-5813 with questions.
Norfolk Transfer Station located at 3136 Woodland Avenue. HHW is accepted at this location from 9am to noon on the first Saturday and fourth Wednesday of each month.
HHW disposal is free to City of Norfolk residents. Proof of residency required.
Paint & paint-related products
Adhesives & glues
Thinners & turpentine
Fixatives & solvents
Stains & finishes
Automotive fluids, fuels & oils
Transmission & brake fluid
Gasoline & diesel fuel
Carburetor & fuel injector cleaners
Waste fuels & solvents
Nail polish removers
Home heating oil
Liquid & solid pesticides
Ant & cockroach poisons
Flea & moth repellants
Mouse & rat poisons
Insecticides, pesticides & herbicides
Compact fluorescent bulbs
Fluorescent tubes (4ft. Only)
Household, automotive & rechargeable batteries
Propane tanks & cylinders
Mercury-containing thermometers & thermostats
Soaps, detergents & cleaners
Tub, tile, shower & toilet cleaners
Red Devil Lye
What you need to know
Examples of household hazardous waste are:
Consumer paint products
Corrosives (such as oven cleaners and drain cleaners)
Pharmaceuticals (unused medications and hypodermic needles)
Pressurized-flammable gas containers (such as propane BBQ tanks and single use tanks)
Solvent and flammable liquids (such as gasoline, anti-freeze, and paint strippers)
Swimming pool chemicals
Consumer electrical and electronic equipment
Products containing mercury (includes thermometers and fluorescent lighting)
The Dangers of HHW
All HHW poses serious environmental and human health threats if disposed of in your regular household waste. Explosive and flammable wastes can pose a threat to the garbage collectors and landfill employees. HHW can also pollute groundwater, soil and air. Hazardous waste, if taken to the landfill, with the rest of your garbage can leach into the surrounding soil and groundwater causing environmental damage.
Protecting the Environment
The best way to protect the air, water and soil from the improper disposal of household hazardous wastes is to avoid purchasing these products in the first place. There are many alternatives that are safer for you and safer for the environment. Considering these alternatives helps you avoid thinking about how to safely dispose of hazardous waste at all. Some of these alternatives include:
1. Reducing the amount of hazardous waste you need to dispose of by purchasing environmentally friendly cleaning products.
2. Reusing is another important way to reduce the amount of HHW that you need to get rid of. Buying rechargeable batteries and repairing, upgrading or donating electronic equipment are some examples of how you can reuse items that would otherwise need to be disposed of at a HHW Collection Centre.