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post #1 of (permalink) Old 11-08-2002, 11:48 AM
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how to dispose of used coolant/radiator flush?>>

I don't want to pour this stuff out on the ground, and the parts stores will only take oil..... what are you supposed to do?

Should I pour it down the toilet where at least it will go to a waste treatment plant?

If you just pour it down a storm drain it goes right into the waterways, not going to do that.

Thanks for any ideas,

Mike

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post #2 of (permalink) Old 11-08-2002, 12:08 PM
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Re: how to dispose of used coolant/radiator flush?>>

Call your local fire dept or trash pick-up service.
Often they have special collecting points.

Thanks for caring.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 11-08-2002, 12:13 PM
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Re: how to dispose of used coolant/radiator flush?>>

Mix it with old oil and take it to the parts store. [img]images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img] Call your local town hall and ask if there is a recycling program for hazardous material. They should be able to point you towards a place.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 11-08-2002, 12:32 PM
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found a place>>

I found a coolant company that will take used coolant back in the are, I'll take it there.

Thanks for the input guys.

Mike
post #5 of (permalink) Old 11-08-2002, 12:36 PM
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Re: how to dispose of used coolant/radiator flush?>>

Last year I was faced with disposing of 10 years worth of collected coolant. After finding the EPA and Feds regulations, as well as State and local regs on the stuff I simply flushed it down the toilet. The local waste water treatment center handles it fine. There are no laws aginst flushing it down the foilet to the sewer.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 11-08-2002, 01:38 PM
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Re: how to dispose of used coolant/radiator flush?>>

The water treatment plants do a good job of cleaning the water...but remember, what ever you flush down the tolet....it it is not solid...then at some point, your going to be drinking that same water again. If everyone flushed their coolant down the drain...guess what.....we wouldn't have to wear coats any more.

I'm no tree hugging kinda guy...but I do believe in not abusing nature....especially when we have alternatives. We don't drain the system very often...so it's no big deal to save the stuff and offload at the local hazardous material drop off. (every city has one)
post #7 of (permalink) Old 11-08-2002, 02:01 PM
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Re: how to dispose of used coolant/radiator flush?>>

It won't hurt the treatment plant. DDawg16 is assuming the anti-freeze cannot be treated, and will remain in it's "toxic" form. Well, it is treated, and completely. Anti-freeze is nothing more than a glycol based fluid, whether it's propylene or ethylene (others are also common), and it actually acts like a food source to treatment plants (like alcohol or sugar). I'm not condoning dumping it in huge numbers, but 5 gallons isn't going to hurt it. Want to know what's REALLY toxic to treatment plants? Milk. Yep, regular, plain old milk. Too much and it'll shock the system (depending , overload it, and it'll kill all the biomass if the plant is small enough (especially under 20,000 GPD or a town of 200 people).

Now, don't get me wrong, I am not encouraging you to dump the anti-freeze down the drain. In fact, the best place to take it is a car dealership, as they routinely have someone come by and filter it (usually on-site, a friend of mine does this full time), so it's reused, and they'll make a profit from it. Therefore you SHOULD NOT pay them to take it, most places I have seen will accept it willingly, for the aforementioned reason.

DO NOT MIX IT WITH OIL! This does nothing but screw up the oil, and it creates a substance that is much harder to get rid of than either component separately.

BTW, I am licensed in treating water, wastewater, and groundwater sites (Superfund), and have worked in the industry for over 10 years. I have 8 different licenses in the field, all top grade.
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 11-08-2002, 02:09 PM
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Re: how to dispose of used coolant/radiator flush?>>

Mark,
Many thanks for the correction...and I do mean it.
I assumed that because the glycol was toxic to animals (which is why we never want to dump it on the ground) I just assumed the same for people. (I never would haver thought that about milk).

Now that you have told us what you do...the least you can do is run down the list of common hazards and what we should do about them. Us jeepers need to set a good example.
post #9 of (permalink) Old 11-09-2002, 07:03 PM
 
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Re: how to dispose of used coolant/radiator flush?>>

It is just as toxic to us as it is to other animals. We're just bigger than a cat so it takes more of a dose. I've um...heard...yeah, that's it.....it doesn't take much to kill a cat. Nope, not condoning killing cats with antifreeze.

Carpal, you'll enjoy this. A prof of mine (waste water engineer) told us of a problem he once got to solve. A cannery accicently dumped many thousands of gallons of a sucrose solution down the drain into the system of a 5000 person town. Apparently the whole treatment plant turned into something resembling grey jello.
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 11-10-2002, 05:53 PM
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Re: how to dispose of used coolant/radiator flush?>>

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
I assumed that because the glycol was toxic to animals (which is why we never want to dump it on the ground) I just assumed the same for people. (I never would haver thought that about milk).

Now that you have told us what you do...the least you can do is run down the list of common hazards and what we should do about them. Us jeepers need to set a good example.

[/ QUOTE ]

Well, that is generally a safe assumption. The microorganisms in the treatment process have a different makeup (obviously) than other life forms, but they still have many of the common traits and thus needs. The issue here is two fold.

1) We are dealing with simple organisms, from amoeba to rotifers, and they have a simple lifestyle. If there is food, they'll eat it. Give them oxygen, a decent living environment (pH, temperature), and some food, and they'll eat all day. The problem is, they'll eat themselves to death, which is why too much milk will shock the system (concentrated food source). There are all sorts of mass/balance equations to use to make sure they are kept happy. Wastewater treatment is actually a very involved science, it's not for the academically challenged at all.

2) Ever heard the phrase: "The solution to pollution is dilution"? We're dealing with such small quantities here that it's almost immeasureable. Now, if a hundred people dumped their anti-freeze down the drain there'd be a problem.

This is why I still advocate taking it to a dealership and recycling it. I am an environmentalist, no doubt about it, but I am also a realist.

A small amount of paint, gasoline, oil, and anything volatile (anything that off-gases) are very hazardous to the system and personnel, do a great deal of damage, and are hard to clean up. Anti-freeze is just about the only thing automotive that you could get rid of.

As to the common hazards, I have quite an arsenal of literature at my disposal, so I can look stuff up to determine the associated hazards to humans. Do you have anything in mind?

I have heard all sorts of stories about stuff that's dumped down the drain. Never heard that one, but it doesn't surprise me. That would have SUCKED to be the people on the receiving end. I have persoanlly seen systems turn from green to red to yellow with different dyes that were dumped, but luckily the dyes were inert so the system didn't die. It takes on average about 2-3 weeks to get the microbiological population back to normal after it's been toxic shocked, and that's even with jump starting it.
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