Household Hazardous Waste

To aid residents in the proper and safe disposal of household hazardous waste (HHW) materials, the City of Durham operates a household hazardous waste collection center through a contract with Ecoflo, Inc. This service is open to all Durham city and county residents. Commercial users are forbidden from using the HHW center.

Acceptable Items From Households Only

  • Aerosol cans
  • Fire extinguisher (dry chemical only)
  • Fluorescent light bulbs
  • Garden chemicals and fertilizers
  • Gasoline
  • Household cleaners
  • Lithium-ion, Nickel metal hydride (NiMH), Nickel Cadmium (Ni-Cad) rechargeable batteries
  • Mercury thermometers
  • Oil based paints (alternative disposal for latex paint (PDF))
  • Petroleum based products
  • Road Flares

Unacceptable Materials

  • Alkaline Batteries *
  • Commercially generated hazardous waste
  • Cooking oil, motor oil, and antifreeze *
  • Electronic waste *
  • Explosives or ammunition (contact the Police Department)
  • Garbage, recyclables, or yard waste *
  • Lead acid cell batteries (car battery)*
  • Medications, used needles, or other medical wastes
  • Radioactive materials, including smoke detectors
  • Unknown or unlabeled materials
Batteries, electronic waste, oils, and anything that normal refuse pickup picks up are accepted at the adjacent Convenience Center.

Helpful Household Hazardous Waste Tips

How to Dry Latex Paint

  1. Mix in some kitty litter, sawdust, or sand and allowing it to dry out thoroughly in the sun.
  2. Stir the mixture to ensure that it is completely dried out.
  3. The paint and can may be thrown out with your trash as long as the lid is removed.
All oil based paints should be taken to the Household Hazardous Waste Collection Center.

Old Paint

Clean Small Mercury Spills

Learn how to clean broken thermometers and broken fluorescent bulbs (PDF).

Dispose of Smoke Detectors

Find out how to properly dispose of smoke detectors (PDF) online.

Commercial Hazardous Waste Disposal

The city’s HHW facility does not accept any materials from commercial users, schools,
apartments, or churches.