Household Hazardous Waste

Drawing of used items

Frequently Asked Questions

When can I dispose of my HHW?

Located at the Community Recycling Centre - 330 South Edgeware Road.  Household Hazardous Waste is only accepted on Saturdays.

What does “HHW” mean anyway?

HHW means “Household Hazardous Wastes”. These are wastes which are hazardous but are generated in very small quantities by the average household. The HHW Depot provides an option for householders for proper disposal and/or treatment, as opposed to putting it in the garbage or down the drain. 

Businesses must manage their own hazardous wastes as a cost of doing business.

Is the HHW Depot “approved”? What is a “Certificate of Approval”?

Yes, the HHW Depot must be approved by the Ministry of the Environment in order to operate. The permit is called a “Certificate of Approval”. The Certificate sets out things like the permitted hours of operation, how HHW must be stored and when removed. 

What HHW materials are acceptable?

Typical HHW are waste paints, stains, varsols and other petroleum distillates, spent batteries, (single-use and automotive), motor oil, aerosol spray cans, BBQ propane tanks, etc. 

All must be in their original, labelled containers - this is to ensure the nature of the contents. This is important because the Depot will only be approved for only the most common types of HHW. Without labels, the collection agency would not be sure the waste was an approved type.

The HHW attendant can determine if visitors are bringing acceptable HHW. 

What HHW materials are not acceptable? 

It is difficult to list all unacceptable HHW. An example is paint manufactured before 1972 which often contained PCBs. Also, waste chemicals from photography or swimming pool maintenance are not acceptable. Materials not in original containers (except used oils) will not be accepted for the reasons mentioned above. 

Can I put HHW in my curbside garbage?

Everyone agrees that HHW should be diverted from landfill as much as possible. Hazardous liquids can be dangerous for collection personnel to handle and can damage waste trucks. Therefore, The City of St. Thomas encourages householders to take their HHW to a certified Depot. 

Is there a user fee? Why? How much? 

There are no fees associated with the disposal of HHW. 

If my HHW material is not acceptable, what can I do? Is there somewhere else to take it?

This depends on the material. But there are often alternatives. Sometimes the place of purchase will have a recycling/disposal service. If in doubt, please ask the HHW attendant who will try to answer your questions. Or you may wish to telephone the local Ministry of the Environment office at 519) 873-5000, Monday to Friday - ask to speak to the Duty Officer.