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Missoula Valley Water Quality District
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Missoula Valley Water Quality District

Department: Water Quality District
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Water Quality District - Disposal Guide


Household Recycling and Disposal Guide

We create lots of household waste in our daily lives, and disposing of all that waste can be a problem. Landfilling our household waste uses large areas of land, and can create water quality problems, as can pouring waste down the drain. So minimizing the amount of any waste products that we generate is important. In addition, some wastes are hazardous, and need to be disposed of in particular ways to protect people and the environment. This guide is designed to provide information about recycling and disposing of various items and substances found in people's homes, and to provide tips for reducing the amount of household waste we create.

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What Are Household Hazardous Wastes?

Household hazardous wastes are unwanted products or chemicals used in household activities, for which use or disposal poses a threat to human health or the environment. If you use your household product up, there is no hazardous waste to dispose of. Some products, such as mercury thermostats, computer monitors and refrigerators, have to be disposed of after they wear out, or when they are replaced with newer, more energy efficient models.

To be considered Household Hazardous Waste, the amount of waste brought for disposal must be under certain limits*. Most household hazardous materials can be grouped into the following categories:

What Makes a Product Hazardous?

A product or material is hazardous when it contains one or more of the following properties:

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Consumer Tips Regarding Household Hazardous Waste

Disposal Options

Click for Summary List of Missoula Recycling Options

Click for Instructions on Rejuvenating and Reusing Old Fuel, Degreasers and Thinners (Colorado Health Dept. website)

Annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event: Haz Waste Days, in September (limited quantities of hazardous waste accepted * ).

Recycling or disposal at local outlets: Many products can be recycled or disposed at local outlets throughout the year.

Most of the items listed below are linked to pages containing further information about that topic.  Use your browser's BACK button to return to this page or use the link back to this page.

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Items Accepted During Haz Waste Days

Items NOT Accepted During Haz Waste Days

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* Federal regulations stipulate that Haz Waste Days can only accept hazardous wastes from "conditionally exempt small quantity generators" (CESQGs), which are defined as people or entities generating less than certain quantities of hazardous waste. To be considered a CESQG, you must generate less than 220 lbs. (approx. 27 gallons) of hazardous waste per month (or less than 2.2 lbs. of acute hazardous waste), and store no more than 2200 lbs. of hazardous waste on site at any one time (EPA CESQG).

The Residential Disposal Guide is provided by the Missoula Valley Water Quality District as a public service and is not an endorsement of specific businesses, services or products. Any omissions or inaccuracies are unintentional. Please contact us with corrections or additions. Call businesses or agencies to confirm hours, locations and charges for services, if any. For information on disposal of items not listed, email or call the Water Quality District at 406-258-4890, M - F, 8 am to 5 pm.

Much of the information provided is from the Washington County, MN, Dept. of Public Health and Environment website.

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