Q:

What is the proper method of disposal for used antifreeze?

A:

Quick Answer

There are a few proper methods for disposing of antifreeze, including bringing it to a recycling event, putting it in a container and bringing it to an auto parts store, and recycling it with chemicals. Antifreeze is a toxic material and cannot be discarded with other household garbage.

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Full Answer

When automobiles were first invented, people would dispose of antifreeze by pouring it down a drain or spilling it on the ground. Residents of rural communities would get rid of antifreeze by pouring it on a gravel road to reduce rising dust from passing vehicles. However, antifreeze is a poisonous material, and it contaminates the groundwater when it soaks into the earth. Old antifreeze should be put into a sealed container and taken to an auto parts store for disposal.

Some states have recycling events for toxic materials like antifreeze. For example, the New York City Department of Sanitation holds disposal events in each borough every spring for easy disposal of harmful products. Antifreeze can also be recycled by removing the contaminants in it and then restoring it by mixing in additives, which typically contain chemicals that raise and stabilize the acidity level, inhibit rust and corrosion, reduce water scaling and slow the breakdown of ethylene glycol.

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