Medications aside, there are plenty of other chemicals out there to consider. Motor oil and paint are common examples of leftover chemicals people often end up having on their hands. These also pose a threat to the environment and should not be allowed to go into the regular solid waste stream, Lichtenstein says. Some communities have waste drop-off sites for these kinds of chemicals, or they might host chemical take-back events throughout the year.
Sometimes, businesses will accept chemicals that are relevant to their industry. Most garages and auto repair shops will take back used motor oil, which is easily cleaned and reused, Lichtenstein says. And some nonprofit organizations, such as PaintCare, have drop-off sites around the country and can direct you to the closest one.