I can guarantee you will have some leftover paint at the end of your painting project. It is a good idea to keep some for later touch ups. Just remember to label it properly with the date, manufacturer, room, color and color recipe.
How do you get rid of any excess paint? Don’t dump it down the drain! Paint can be hazardous and needs to be disposed of responsibly. Counties all have slightly different regulations, so check with your local authority first regarding disposal instructions.
As a general rule:
Oil paint, stains, varnishes and thinners are toxic and flammable and generally cannot be dumped or disposed of in the trash. They should be taken to a hazardous waste center.
Believe it or not, latex paint can be disposed of in the trash. But it has to dry up and solidify first. This doesn’t take long as you will have found out if you have ever stored paint and air has got in. Instead of touch up paint you have a solid rock!
If there is only a little paint left in the can, take the lid off and leave the can in a safe, warm and well ventilated area or out in the sun. It should dry up in a couple of days. If the can is more than a quarter full, you may have to help it solidify by adding kitty litter, sawdust, shredded paper or mulch. Once the paint is tacky and won’t spill anywhere, you can put it in the trash. Remember to remove the lid.
Rollers, brushes and other applicators can also be put in the trash as long as any paint on them is dry.
DON’T MIX THE TWO
Don’t mix water-based and oil-based products together. Keep them separate.
STOP & SWAP
If you have full paint cans left over that you don’t need, see whether there is a Stop and Swap program in your area. This allows you to drop off household, yard and car products you no longer need for others to pick up and use free of charge. A great way to help out others.