Water Quality District - Hazardous Waste
What is it?
Formaldehyde (also known as Methanal) is a colorless gas, and is used in the manufacture of some household products and building materials. Formalin is a liquid solution of formaldehyde and water, with methanol added as a stabilizer. It is used as a disinfectant and preservative for biological specimens, and is sometimes referred to as formaldehyde, although this is not technically correct.
What Makes it Hazardous?
Exposure to Formaldehyde (and Formalin) can irritate skin, nose, throat, eyes and may increase the risk of cancer. Formaldehyde can off-gas from some household products and building materials. Some laboratory employees or students may be exposed to Formalin.
- Allow new building materials to air out before using area.
- Use formaldehyde-containing lab products only with adequate ventilation.
- Choose products that contain lower levels of formaldehyde, or less-toxic alternatives.
- Most formaldehyde-containing building materials and household products can be disposed of in a landfill. Contact Allied (728-9572) if you are unsure.
- Formalin or other liquids containing formaldehyde can be disposed of at Haz Waste Days, in September.
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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