Create a Healthy Home

Many of us are more likely to associate hazardous materials with industrial products than with toilet bowl cleaner or paint used in our homes. Just because you bought something at the supermarket or hardware store doesn’t mean it’s safe for your family or the environment.

8 Simple Steps to Protect Your Family's Health & the Environment

1) Buy only latex paint and don’t by more than you need. Oil based paint causes air pollution. New latex paints provide equal quality and because they are water-based, cleanup is easy. Look for “low-VOC”paints, which are the least polluting. Look for latex paint with recycled content, like MetroPaint. Paint is the largest household hazardous waste stream, so buy only what you need.

2) Light your barbecue with an electric or chimney starter. Charcoal lighter fluid causes air pollution and it is very flammable. Both of these alternatives are cheaper, and make lighting a fire easier and more reliable.

3) Replace your mercury thermometers and thermostat. Buy a new non-mercury thermometer for the medicine cabinet. Replace your mercury thermostat with an electronic programmable on – you’ll save on heating and cooling costs too! Even a few drops from a broken thermometer or thermostat can raise mercury air concentrations in a room to unsafe levels. Bring any mercury-containing items you have to the Hazardous Waste Center.

4) Buy (or ask your mechanic to use) re-refined oil and safer propylene glycol antifreeze. To ensure that you’re getting high-quality re-refined oil, look for the API Certification seal.

5) Buy rechargeable batteries. Start replacing your battery-powered electronics with products that have integrated rechargeable batteries. When you’re done with rechargeable, lithium, ni-cad, lead acid, alkaline, or button-type batteries, bring them to the Hazardous Waste Center.

6) Replace caustic chemical cleaners in your home with more natural green cleaners, which you can purchase pre-made at most grocery stores, or make yourself with a few simple ingredients.

7) Employ natural and non-toxic gardening tactics in your yard and garden. By learning good gardening strategies, you’ll end up with fewer pest problems and less need for harmful or polluting chemicals.

8) Safely store hazardous products.

  • Store hazardous products in a dry location away from heat sources, food, and medication.
  • Store products out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Always store hazardous products in their original containers. Make sure the original labels are in good condition. Having the safety closure and product label are very important for your safety.
  • Store flammable and corrosive products in separate places. They are not compatible.
  • Store products in their original containers in “secondary containment” – a solid plastic or metal container like a storage box, dish pan, or cleaning caddy. That way if a product falls over or leaks, the chemicals will stay in one place.
  • Put child safety locks on cabinet doors in order to keep your hazardous products safely on the shelves and away from your children and pets.

 

Upcoming Events

2017 Household and Small Business
Hazardous Waste Collection Schedule

 

Hood River
November 17, 9am-2pm

The Dalles
November 18, 9am-2pm

Rural
November 3, 10am-2pm – Wasco 
 
Ag Events
November 1, 10am-2pm – Hood River
November 2, 10am-2pm – The Dalles

Click here for full listing and more info
about our 2017 Hazardous Waste Events.