weird advice on proper fluids disposal from PM

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southeast US
I came across it while googling for brake fluid disposal. http://www.popularmechanics.com/cars/how-to/maintenance/2063646
Quote:
PAINT AND GASOLINE Most automotive paint used in the aftermarket is solvent-based, either enamel or lacquer. (A lot of new cars are painted at the factory with waterborne paint systems.) And many municipalities won't take this type of paint or its companion thinners as waste. If you have a secure, well-ventilated place, one that isn't likely to start a fire or poison children or pets, you can do what we usually do for small quantities of leftover or contaminated paint thinner and gasoline—just leave the can open in a safe, warm place until it dries completely. (Don't try this with coolant—it takes far too long to dry out.)
Quote:
BRAKE FLUID Brake fluid is alcohol-based. It's toxic when ingested. When bleeding brakes, catch the runoff in a jar. Brake fluid from a jar that's been opened for more than a few months probably has absorbed enough water to reduce its boiling point past the point of safety. To dispose of new or unused brake fluid, pour it into a container of cat litter. The brake fluid will evaporate within a few days. As with paint, keep this away from pets and children, and any source of ignition.
Really?
 
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Location
Pennsylvania
Br5ake fluid is usually a polyethylene glycol material and not always compatible with oil or soluble in oil. Because of the oxygen atoms in the backbone of the polyethylene glycol, brake fluid is very hygroscopic and attracts water. This mix, like any mix of two liquids, will show a boiling point between the two liquids which is why water lowers the boiling point.
 
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NoVA
Originally Posted By: Warstud
I always thought you could dispose Brake Fluid with Motor Oil, Tranny Fluid and Power Steering Fluid.
Some recycles say yes some say no. Depends on the area.
 
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Location
MI
The intent of these instructions is that you are not supposed to put liquid waste in landfills. Solid, dried up paint and brake fluid is apparently o.k.. Letting the solvents and/or volatiles into the atmosphere??? shrug
 
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Location
NY
As far as the paint is concerned they don't want it going into the environment as a liquid. A better way is to mix kitty litter into it and leave the pot open until it mixes with the kitty litter and the solvents flash off. Then seal the can and toss it.
 
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I know this guy.........(Okay its me) who would run brake fluid and antifreeze very slowly through a vacuum source oh his beater cars while driving on the freeway. His beater cars had very clean pistons. I don't think I would try it on a DI car though.
 

friendly_jacek

Thread starter
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southeast US
Well they are combustible at high temps and water injection does clean and improve fuel efficiency. I wouldn't do it in my newish car either, but old beater would be nice to experiment. Don't they have some intake oilers that can do the dosing?
 
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Central Florida
Originally Posted By: demarpaint
As far as the paint is concerned they don't want it going into the environment as a liquid. A better way is to mix kitty litter into it and leave the pot open until it mixes with the kitty litter and the solvents flash off. Then seal the can and toss it.
Are you sure about that ?
 
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Location
CA
I think this is re-inventing the wheel. The error is the assumption that "most municipalities won't accept" Not true at least in my area. In general it's easier to just call or google around and find the household hazardous collection point, where they take and deal with all the crazy stuff for you, rather then assuming you can't find a place. My HHW collection is only open certain days and for certain hours, and requires you to fill out a webform for an "appointment", but they'll take all the items listed in the OP. Or ask at a shop that performs the same service that you are DIYing and offer to pay a few $ in disposal costs that you would've spent on kitty litter.
 
Last edited:

JHZR2

Staff member
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New Jersey
Our municipality accepts everything. Perhaps elsewhere, services are poor, and release like this is probably fairly similar to other disposal processes in the end all. I suppose that when you buy paint, any environmental tarrifs associated with pollution have already been made. And glycols? Are they really an issue if they flash off? Maybe in LA, but not necessarily everywhere, all the time.
 
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Location
Iowa
Originally Posted By: LT4 Vette
Originally Posted By: demarpaint
As far as the paint is concerned they don't want it going into the environment as a liquid. A better way is to mix kitty litter into it and leave the pot open until it mixes with the kitty litter and the solvents flash off. Then seal the can and toss it.
Are you sure about that ?
When I worked for a large scale water filtration company, I did a stint as a painter. If you had extra paint left over from a job, it was spread out on cardboard to dry, then thrown out with the trash.
 
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35,791
Location
NY
Originally Posted By: LT4 Vette
Originally Posted By: demarpaint
As far as the paint is concerned they don't want it going into the environment as a liquid. A better way is to mix kitty litter into it and leave the pot open until it mixes with the kitty litter and the solvents flash off. Then seal the can and toss it.
Are you sure about that ?
In my area yes. You can also hold onto it, pour small portions into gallon cans until full, and then once a year go to where they're holding hazardous material disposal and bring it there. As I stated they don't want it in the environment in a liquid form. One thing I neglected to mention is if I'm disposing of it it is in small quantities, and solidified. Nothing liquid gets tossed.
 

JHZR2

Staff member
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New Jersey
+1 Ive seen powder sold at home stores to solidify it too... Since just letting wet paint without litter or the catalyst sit will just form a skim top and will never solidify.
 
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43,676
Location
'Stralia
I find the brake fluid one hard to believe...I've had an open jar of used brake fluid on the shelf for 9 months, and it hasn't evaporated yet...the tyre on my cement mixer that I coat every few months with it looks better than the one with belt dressing. The paints and thinners are S.O.P. in Oz for the landfill, but "drum muster" which is designed to get farmers to return chemical drums will take liquids. Place next door to where my Mum and her siblings grew up had an eccentric prospector who appeared to be a successful fossicker, but always poor. After he dies, his children went to clean up, and toss out all the pots of dried up paint, and found one that was obviously too heavy for it's contents...nuggets and coins dropped in 1/3 full paint tins, and left to dry out.
 
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10,122
Location
Nut farm
Originally Posted By: raytseng
I think this is re-inventing the wheel. The error is the assumption that "most municipalities won't accept" Not true at least in my area. In general it's easier to just call or google around and find the household hazardous collection point, where they take and deal with all the crazy stuff for you, rather then assuming you can't find a place. My HHW collection is only open certain days and for certain hours, and requires you to fill out a webform for an "appointment", but they'll take all the items listed in the OP. Or ask at a shop that performs the same service that you are DIYing and offer to pay a few $ in disposal costs that you would've spent on kitty litter.
I gave up trying the town transfer station...basically, they were open alternate Tuesdays and whenever Saturn was aligned with Mars...or something like that. Short version: despite posted hours, they were NEVER OPEN! Used oil I burned in my F-350 & Liz's Blazer, coolant went to Auto Zone.
 
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