Special Disposal

These items cannot be recycled still have to be properly disposed. Learn more about each category below.

Latex Paint

The Geauga-Trumbull Solid Waste Management District does not accept latex paint as household hazardous waste because it is not a hazardous material. Most paints sold are latex or water-based paints. Check the label on your paint can to determine what kind of paint you have. Latex paint is 99% water and 1% rubber, and is safe to dispose with your household trash when it is dried out.

Oil-Based Paint

Oil-based paint and the solvents used to remove this type of paint (i.e. mineral spirits, paint thinner, turpentine) are flammable, hazardous materials that should be disposed of properly. The Geauga-Trumbull Solid Waste Management District accepts oil-based paints (not latex) and household solvents at our collection facilities.

Needles and Sharps

Check with your health care provider or health care facility to see if they have a take-back program for needles. If not, used needles and syringes from self-injections may be placed in the regular trash if certain precautions are followed. The precautions are designed to protect sanitation workers and other workers in the waste industry from being stuck by a needle.

Medication

Pills, tablets and capsules should not be flushed down the toilet or thrown away in your regular trash. Residents can deposit unused, unwanted or expired prescription drugs at drop boxes located at law enforcement agencies throughout Geauga & Trumbull Counties.

Hazardous

​Household Hazardous Waste is NOT ACCEPTED THROUGH THE WINTER. We accept chemicals, oil-based paints and other HHW materials only during spring-fall months. We typically start accepting HHW on the Wednesday nearest to Earth Day (April 22nd) through the last Wednesday in October.

Fluorescent Bulbs

Do not place bulbs, including fluorescent, incandescent, LED or HID, in your curbside recycling or at our recycling drop-off sites. Fluorescent bulbs include the long, skinny bulbs usually found in basements and garages light fixtures, the small, twisty compact bulbs (CFLs), U-shaped bulbs, and many other similar types of compact bulbs.

Learn More

Most paints sold are latex or water-based paints. Check the label on your paint can to determine what kind of paint you have. If the can doesn’t specify the type of paint, look at how to clean up afterwards. If the paint cleans up with soap and water, it is latex/water-based and you can dry it out and dispose of it with your regular trash. If you need turpentine, paint thinner, or mineral spirits to clean up the brushes, it is oil-based and we will accept it at our collection facilities.

If the paint is still usable, you may be able to donate it to a local reuse non-profit, such as a Habitat for Humanity ReStore. The Fine Arts Council of Trumbull County also accepts usable paint donations for their painting projects. Contact them for drop-off instructions. 

If the paint is no longer usable, here are step-by-step instructions for disposing of latex paint.

To solidify latex paint:

  • Air dry. Remove the lid and allow the liquid to evaporate. This works well for small quantities of paint (an inch or two in the bottom of the can), and can take several days.
  • Use a drying agent. Mix an equal amount of an absorbent material into the can and allow the paint to dry. Use cat litter, sawdust, plaster of Paris, Oil-dry, or “waste paint hardeners” found at home improvement centers. The paint could dry quickly, depending on how much drying agent you include in the can.
  • Pour thin layers (about 1″ of paint) into a cardboard box lined with plastic. Allow the paint to dry one layer at a time until all paint has hardened.
  • Once the paint is thoroughly dry, place it in a regular trash bag and put it out with your weekly trash collection.

DO NOT

  • DO NOT dump the paint on the ground or down storm drains where it will travel directly to surface and/or ground water.
  • DO NOT pour paint down the drain. While small amounts of latex paint can safely be washed down the drain to a septic system or wastewater treatment plant, this practice should be kept to a minimum. Limit this to brush cleaning and other clean-up.
  • DO NOT throw liquid paint in the regular trash. Leaking paint spills out of waste collection vehicles onto city streets making an unsightly mess that is very difficult to clean up.

Tips

  • Buy the correct amount of paint for your project. Determine how much paint you’ll need via a paint calculator offered by your local home improvement or decorating store website, or use a mobile app.
  • Not sure if you’ll like a color? Use paint swatches first or purchase a sample size.
  • Be creative and use up any paint that you have left over. Paint a birdhouse, a garage wall, or outdoor furniture.
  • Dried-out paint cans, empty aerosol cans and other empty containers can be placed in the regular trash for disposal.

Oil-based paint and the solvents used to remove this type of paint (i.e. mineral spirits, paint thinner, turpentine) are flammable, hazardous materials that should be disposed of properly. The Geauga-Trumbull Solid Waste Management District accepts oil-based paints (not latex) and household solvents at our collection facilities.

Latex, or water-based paints are non-hazardous and can be dried out and disposed of in your regular trash. 

If the paint is still usable, you may be able to donate it to a local reuse non-profit, such as a Habitat for Humanity ReStore. The Fine Arts Council of Trumbull County also accepts usable paint donations for their painting projects. Contact them for drop-off instructions. 

If the paint is no longer usable, bring it to our Trumbull Collection Facility for proper recycling and/or disposal.

DO NOT

  • DO NOT dump paint or solvents on the ground or down storm drains where it will travel directly to surface and/or ground water.
  • DO NOT pour paint or solvents down the drain. While small amounts can safely be washed down the drain to a septic system or wastewater treatment plant, this practice should be kept to a minimum. Limit this to brush cleaning and other clean-up.
  • DO NOT throw liquid paint or solvents in the regular trash. Oil-based paints and solvents are flammable and can increase a risk of fire on waste collection vehicles and at landfills. 

Tips

  • Buy the correct amount of paint for your project. Determine how much paint you’ll need via a paint calculator offered by your local home improvement or decorating store website, or use a mobile app.
  • Not sure if you’ll like a color? Use paint swatches first or purchase a sample size.
  • Be creative and use up any paint that you have left over. Paint a birdhouse, a garage wall, or outdoor furniture.

Check with your health care provider or health care facility to see if they have a take-back program for needles. If not, used needles and syringes from self-injections may be placed in the regular trash if certain precautions are followed. The precautions are designed to protect sanitation workers and other workers in the waste industry from being stuck by a needle.

  • Place used needles and syringes in a rigid plastic container with a sealable lid such as a Sharps container or a plastic laundry detergent bottle with a screw top.
  • Seal the lid with tape.
  • Write “Caution: Sharps” on the container.
  • Place the container in your regular trash.
  • Do not place the container in with your recyclables.

See more at SafeNeedleDisposal.org or read the Ohio EPA’s guidance document for Disposal of Household Generated Sharps.

 

Pills, tablets and capsules should not be flushed down the toilet or thrown away in your regular trash. Residents can deposit unused, unwanted or expired prescription drugs at drop boxes located at law enforcement agencies throughout Geauga & Trumbull Counties. Click GEAUGA COUNTY or TRUMBULL COUNTY for locations near you. 

Needles and syringes are not accepted in the Drop Box. 

Liquid medications are not accepted in the Sheriff’s Rx Drop Box Program. Properly dispose of liquid medication by mixing it with coffee grounds, cat litter, dirt or sawdust to make it undesirable or unusable. Once the liquid is in an unusable state, place it in the regular trash for proper disposal. Do not flush liquid medications into our sewer system or waterways.

Do not place bulbs, including fluorescent, incandescent, LED or HID, in your curbside recycling or at our recycling drop-off sites.

Fluorescent bulbs include the long, skinny bulbs usually found in basements and garages light fixtures, the small, twisty compact bulbs (CFLs), U-shaped bulbs, and many other similar types of compact bulbs. 

Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and other energy-efficient lighting such as fluorescent tube lamps and high intensity discharge (HID) lamps contain a very small amount of mercury. All fluorescent bulbs and ballasts should be recycled properly to protect public health and the environment. They are considered a household hazardous waste (HHW) and we accept them at our Trumbull Collection Facility. 

Compact fluorescent bulbs (the small, twisty CFLs) can also be recycled for free at Lowe’s retail locations. Look for a drop box near the main entrance or customer service desk.

How do I clean-up a broken fluorescent bulb?
In 2010, the U.S. EPA released new guidelines on how to manage mercury-containing compact fluorescent light bulbs that break in the home. Fluorescent bulbs contain a small amount of mercury sealed in the glass tubing. When broken, some of the mercury is released as mercury vapor. The EPA states the bulb will continue to leak mercury vapor until it is cleaned up and removed from the home.

What about LED or halogen bulbs?
Incandescent lights, LED and halogen bulbs do not contain any dangerous chemicals. When the bulb is burned out, dispose in the regular trash.