Paints, thinners and wood preservatives

Paints, thinners and wood preservatives can be accepted, free of charge, at any of our household waste recycling centres.

If you are disposing of more hazardous waste than 10 items or that will fit inside two supermarket carrier bags, to ensure we have space in our hazardous waste container to accept your waste please contact us.

Once we have details of your waste we will be able to let you know if space is available. If you turn up at a HWRC with more hazardous waste than this and have not contacted us and received a confirmation email that you can take the waste you may be unable to dispose of the waste.

The following are examples of paints, thinners and wood preservatives that can be disposed of in the waste for energy recover container.

  • brush cleaner
  • decking / wood oil
  • paint - oil and water based
  • paint remover
  • paint thinners such as white spirit
  • turpentine
  • varnish
  • varnish remover
  • wood preservative

If you have no use for these items please pass them onto someone else who might use them.

Tins, bottles and sprays containing these must be firmly secured to prevent leakages. If paint is still in a very liquid condition you will need to harden it before disposal. You can buy a paint hardener, or add sawdust, sand or soil to the tin and leave the lid off until the paint becomes solid and dry. Please refit the lid and ensure it is fully hardened before taking it to the HWRC.

Paint is not currently reused or recycled however empty metal emulsion paint tins can be placed in the scrap metal skip for recycling. Please ask staff for assistance.

Paint, thinners and wood preservative from a business or charity must be disposed of through a private licensed contractor.

Find out more about paint reuse from

Paint recycling logo