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Chemical waste disposal

Unwanted household products such as paint, cleaners and pesticides must not be placed in your regular waste or recycling bins.

Detox your home

The Detox Your Home program ensures these chemicals are recycled or disposed of safely and in an environmentally responsible way. Collections are held throughout Victoria and residents from all municipalities can drop off their unwanted chemicals at any of the permanent or mobile collection points for free. 

Permanent collection facilities

A small number of permanent drop off locations are available. The closest points for City of Melbourne residents are in Reservoir and Keilor Park. Permanent facilities only accept a limited range of household chemicals products, such as:

  • paint 
  • motor oil 
  • car batteries 
  • household batteries 
  • fluorescent tubes and compact fluorescent globes (CFLs) 
  • BBQ gas cylinders up to 9kg (check with facility).

For more information, visit Detox Your Home – permanent facilities.

Mobile collection service

A mobile collection service schedule is also available. This service takes a wider range of chemicals. The locations and dates for the mobile services are available at Resource Smart – Detox Your Home.

What chemicals can I dispose of?

Among the types of unwanted household chemicals accepted for disposal are:

  • household chemicals such as aerosol cans, insect sprays, pest poisons, household cleaners, pharmaceuticals, mothballs and old smoke detectors
  • garden chemicals such as fertilisers, fungicides, herbicides and insecticides 
  • automotive chemicals such as transmission fluids, batteries, brake fluid, car wax solvent, fuels (such as petrol, diesel, kerosene)
  • workshop chemicals including paint strippers, solvent-based glues, water and oil-based paints, paint thinner, acetone, turpentine, varnish and wood preservative
  • other miscellaneous chemicals accepted are acids and alkalis, artists' paints and supplies, photographic chemicals, fibreglass resins (not mixed), extinguishers, gas cylinders, safety ammunition, swimming pool chemicals and mercury batteries.

For more information on items that can be collected, visit Resource Smart – Detox Your Home – mobile service.

What chemicals can I not dispose of?

Chemical waste that will not be accepted includes:

  • chemicals not used for household purposes such as farm, industrial and commercial-use chemicals
  • containers larger than 20 litres in size.

For more information on items that are not accepted by the mobile service, visit Resource Smart – Detox Your Home – mobile service items not accepted.

The risks of storing chemicals around your home

Storing old chemicals in the shed or under the sink increases the risk of poisoning around the home. Sending chemicals to landfill or even pouring small amounts down stormwater drains can pollute creeks and rivers, harming plants and animals.

Safety measures

The following safety measures should be taken when transporting chemicals to the depot:

  • ensure lids are tightly fitted 
  • place liquids on a tray or in a plastic bucket so any spills are contained 
  • pack powders and solids securely
  • keep corrosive chemicals, such as battery acid, away from poisons 
  • keep oxidising agents, such as peroxide, away from all other materials 
  • travel with your car windows down if carrying flammable or odorous materials 
  • double-wrap old liquid containers in plastic bags to prevent leaking.

Sustainability Victoria has information about disposing of household chemicals and hazardous materials.

For more information visit Resource Smart – ABC of household chemical waste disposal.

Return to Household garbage and recycling.

See also:

Man with cleaning products