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What do I do with all this paint?

How to legally dispose of paint

By Roy Thomas - February 11, 2019


Do you have a room or basement corner in your house that looks like this?

Many people have had the opportunity to use the paint brush inside their home or apartment this winter to spruce it up and make it new again. What do you do with all that old paint? Here are some things you DON’T want to do with it:

Do NOT pour it down the drain

Pouring paint down the drain is terrible for the environment and can contaminate ground and water sources, not to mention it can stain your sink and clog your plumbing! We know how expensive that can be – I just had to hire a plumber to clear my drains - $550 later, they were draining again!

Do NOT Throw it away

In most states, it is illegal to throw away paint. Colorado is one of them. In fact, Colorado charges a $0.75 per gallon and a $1.50 per 5-gallon container fee every time you purchase paint for recycling purposes. Throwing it away, puts hazardous chemicals into our environment. 

Do NOT Store it for too long or in extreme temperatures

Most paint should be stored in temperatures between 50 and 90 degrees. Anything other than that can change the chemical make up and cause problems in the future if you were to use it, especially if it freezes. Also, I personally will not use paint that is has been stored for more than 3 years. Paint does NOT age better with time.

So, what CAN you do with old paint?

Store it in a safe place for future touch up
Paint a mural on a wall – this is one of Darlene’s favorite activities. :-)
Use it for a Craft, like painting a stool, or old chair you want to refurbish.


Take it to a Paint Care Drop off location

You can take your paint to any Paint Care Drop off location.  They are found at OR, do what I do; take it to a Sherwin Williams store! They will accept up to 5 gallons of old paint per day to recycle. While you are there, you can look at the latest colors!

For other helpful tips and ideas, go to our News page at

It’s a great day to paint!!

Roy Thomas