How to dispose of acetone – the right way in 2022

How to dispose of acetone – 3 best ways and safety tips Paint Advice

How to dispose of acetone – the right way in 2022

Wondering how to dispose of acetone? Acetone is a solvent. It is used in various household items. For example, it is present in some varnishes and wood stains. Advertised as an effective paint stripper. Glue is another common use for acetone.


On the other hand, most people know about acetone through nail polish remover. This product contains acetone and a small amount of isopropanol.

If you want to learn more about how to properly dispose of acetone, here is everything you need to know about acetone handling.

How to dispose of acetone?

Handling acetone is not difficult if all the basic steps are followed carefully. Before you start, make sure your safety measures are in place.

We divided the acetone recovery process into three methods. Here’s how to safely dispose of acetone.

Disposal of acetone cleaners

Acetone is a non-toxic, biodegradable chemical. If you use acetone with cotton balls or swabs, it should be placed in a plastic bag and discarded. Tie the bag and dispose of it in a regular trash can.


Wash your hands after removing the soaked cotton ball. If you have a lot of acetone on hand, squeeze it out into another container to get rid of the excess. Put the container in its original packaging and recycle it as normal waste.

Discarding acetone thinner

Wear protective gloves and a mask before discarding acetone thinner. This is to ensure customers get acetone fumes in the thinner. Strain the used solvent through a coffee filter and place it in a glass or airtight container.


Color from the solvent collects in the filter and the solvent spills into the container. Tighten the jar lid or seal the container. Dry the paint with a coffee filter, wrap it in newspaper, and throw it in the trash.

Acetone collected in a can be reused as a diluent. Write the dilution type and strain date on the bottle. Find a hazardous waste recycling and disposal facility near you. You can find these objects on the website EPA or Earth911.

Check your institution’s regulations for dispensing acetone. Different locations have different regulations for the disposal of acetone. Dispose of used acetone according to local government instructions.

Disposal of residual acetone

It is also important to properly dispose of acetone residue, old nail polish and makeup remover. Store nail polish and makeup remover bottles in separate containers that you no longer use in the salon or at home.

Take this container to your local hazardous waste recycling center. Do not pour acetone nail polish remover down the drain.

Pour remaining acetone into an airtight container. Store away from flammable materials and hot surfaces. Put them in a safe trash can and you’ll find a recycling facility. You can find a recycling center by visiting the EPA or Earth911 website and entering your zip code.

These websites offer options for dealing with facilities located in specific geographic locations. Contact the factory and they will tell you how to bring the acetone container to the center. Some agencies also offer pick-up services for hazardous materials and transport them to the hazardous waste center.

What is acetone?

Acetone is a solvent that can attack certain substances. This clear, colorless liquid is commonly used as a bleaching agent and is found in many nail polish removers. Acetone can also damage paint and grease.


One advantage of acetone in this regard is that it evaporates quickly. This makes certain tasks easier, since small amounts of acetone usually do not need to be actively removed unless they reach the surface and can be harmful.

Manufacturers also use acetone to make various products. It is part of the manufacturing process of some plastics, such as some paints. Products designed to remove gum and grease from fabrics may also contain acetone.

Can you run acetone outside?

Pouring acetone outdoors is harmful because hazardous waste facility waste interacts with the environment. In some cases, it can penetrate the ground and enter the groundwater. Then you can enter food and water sources.

Never pour a small amount of acetone out. The only exception is evaporating small amounts in a metal container. The container prevents spills to the ground or water, ensuring no risk to the environment.


Acetone storage

As with acetone, care should be taken when storing acetone. Pour the acetone into an airtight metal container and close the lid.


Store sealed container in a cool place away from electrical outlets and stoves. All fuels should be stored away from acetone containers. Acetone is highly flammable and can be ignited over long distances.

If your salon or business uses a lot of acetone, contact your fire department, and they will tell you how to store it safely. Proper storage of acetone reduces the risk of fire.

Important! Empty acetone containers should preferably be taken to a hazardous waste recycling facility.

Safety tips when using acetone

It is important to follow some basic precautions when using acetone. Please note the following:

  • Acetone is a highly flammable liquid and should be kept away from heat sources and open flames.
  • Acetone is harmful if inhaled, so it is important to work in a well-ventilated area.
  • If acetone gets on your skin, wash it off immediately with soap and water.
  • If acetone gets in your eyes, flush with water for 15 minutes and seek medical attention.

Can acetone be reused?

In some cases, acetone can be reused. For example, some people clean old coins with acetone. As long as you filter the dirt and grime out of the acetone, it can be reused.


This is the only situation where acetone can be reused. For example, after using acetone to remove nail polish, do not reuse acetone. It is hardly efficient.

Is acetone safe to pour down the drain?

Do not pour acetone down the drain. Throwing away trash may seem easy, but it comes with many risks.

Acetone is a strong solvent, so some people try to unclog clogged drains with acetone. This allows you to dissolve the waste that is stuck in your drains, but it can also cause a lot of problems. Here’s why it’s not a good idea to pour acetone down drains.


Acetone can dissolve plastic pipes in plumbing systems. This damages the plumbing system, making repairs time-consuming and expensive. The biggest risk associated with acetone is its high flammability. The vapor can ignite in the sewer and cause an explosion.

All of these reasons suggest that pouring acetone nail polish remover down the drain can be harmful. It is therefore important to always dispose of acetone properly.

How dangerous is acetone?


Windows should remain open when using acetone-based products.

This is because acetone is a very aggressive chemical. Even small amounts can cause serious breathing problems.

Acetone is also a flammable liquid. Even an open flame will ignite if you approach it. In fact, not only does acetone ignite, but pretty much anything that comes close to acetone.

As you can imagine, nail polish remover is a chemical that must be disposed of with care. Otherwise, there is a risk of the trash can catching fire.

In fact, nail polish remover poses a fire hazard when it lands in landfills from households. It just ignites. Of course, acetone paint thinner rarely catches fire, but there are risks.

Read also: Is paint flammable or combustible?


How to dispose of acetone – FAQ

How do you dispose of acetone at home?

If you need to remove an amount of leftover acetone, blot it with a kitchen towel or paper towel and place it in a metal basket with a disposable bag. It can come out with the usual garbage.

Can I pour acetone outside?

Even a small amount of nail polish remover should definitely not be poured outside. The only exception is placing small amounts in a metal container outside to allow them to evaporate. The container prevents it from spilling into the ground or water and ensures it poses no risk to the environment.


If you want to learn more about acetone, you can find additional information and tips in this article.

Acetone is a safe household solvent, but is classified as hazardous waste. Local regulations for the disposal of hazardous waste must be observed. Store acetone in an airtight container to prevent spills.

Avatar photo

My blog was created specifically to bring you the latest design trends. I graduated from Parsons School of Design in New York 10 years ago. I started drawing as a child. I was very fond of design and could even choose a style for my friends and relatives during the renovation.

Rate author
Best glitter paint for walls
Add a comment