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Household Hazardous Waste

Leftover paints, old batteries, medicines, and motor oil are all part of a long list of items classified as household hazardous wastes. If not disposed of properly, they can be harmful to not only the environment but to human health. Disposing of hazardous waste by pouring it down the drain may corrode plumbing, poison septic tanks, destroy sewage treatment organisms, release toxic fumes, and contaminate surface and groundwater.

Residents of North Bay and surrounding townships can take these items to the Household Hazardous Waste Depot located next to the Recycling Center at 112 Patton St., free of charge. The Household Hazardous Waste Depot is open Wednesday to Saturday from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m., year-round.

There are limits to how much waste residents can bring per trip. There is a 60 Litre limit per week, greater quantities can be rejected at the discretion of staff. Greater quantities can be rejected at the discretion of the staff.

For general inquiries, please contact the Wasteline or Waste Management 705-474-0400, ext. 2333.

The following products are examples of Household Hazardous Waste that should be taken to the HHW Depot:

  • Aerosol cans
  • Adhesives
  • Antifreeze
  • Asphalt tar
  • Automatic transmission fluid
  • Batteries/Battery acid
  • Brake fluid
  • Bug & tar removers
  • Car wax & polish
  • Cooking oil
  • Degreasers
  • Disinfectant
  • Drain cleaner
  • Dye
  • Engine flushes
  • Flea collars
  • Floor/furniture strippers & polishes
  • Fungicide
  • Gasoline
  • Herbicides
  • Household cleansers
  • Jewelry cleaner
  • Kerosene
  • Lighter fluid
  • Light bulbs (CFLs) and tubes
  • Lubes
  • Lye or caustic soda
  • Motor oil & waste oils
  • Nail polish
  • Oil filters
  • Oven cleaner
  • Paint/stain
  • Paint thinners
  • Pesticides
  • Pool chemicals
  • Propane tanks (big & small)
  • Roofing tar
  • Rust-proofers
  • Solvents
  • Spot remover
  • Syringes
  • Turpentine
  • Wood Preservative

Items with refrigerants (AC units, dehumidifiers, water coolers, fridges, and freezers), PCBs, radioactive waste, biological/pathological waste, explosives and unidentified products are banned from the Household Hazardous Waste Depot.

For a complete list of accepted and banned items, view the Garbage Information page.

  • All material should be left in the original container for easy identification.
  • If the waste is not in its original container, it should be sealed and labeled.
  • Bring all hazardous waste in a cardboard box of rigid container.
  • Collect household batteries in a small bag, plastic container, or coffee can.
  • Do not mix bulbs and batteries; batteries may cause bulbs to break, leading to mercury exposure and increase the risk of injury due to the broken glass.
  • Place sharps in an approved container. If you do not have access to an approved sharps container, please put sharps in a rigid plastic container, tape the lid shut, and properly label SHARPS on the bottle.
  • Load your vehicle just before leaving to minimize fumes.


The Organic Drop-Off Depot is open Monday to Saturday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. from April to November. Residents can drop off flower clippings, grass clippings, and leaf waste at the Organic Drop-Off Depot, free of charge.

Businesses are subject to fees.

Brush, milled wood, plastic bags and garbage are banned from the Organic Drop-Off Depot.

Residents can also drop-off scrap metal in the metal bin located at the Household Hazardous Waste Depot.  This includes microwaves, metal frames, pipes, old pots and pans, BBQs, etc.  Items with refrigerant are banned from the metal bin.

The Paint Re-Use Program is a waste reduction program located at the Household Hazardous Waste Depot.  Good quality household product such as paint, stains, varnishes and cleaners can be picked up by residents, free of charge.

These chemicals are used in simple applications and seep into the ground.  For example:

  • Lawn care and gardens
  • Waste from garbage cans and landfills
  • Runoff from sprinklers and hoses into storm drains and sewers.
  • Flushed down toilets and sinks

It doesn't matter how...sooner or later they'll end up in our environment.

Residents should take their HHW products to the HAZARDOUS WASTE DEPOT, FREE OF CHARGE.

If you must use hazardous products, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Buy only what you need and give away what you do not use
  • Share seldom used products.
  • Buy alternative products that are less hazardous.
  • Never mix products together.
  • Use only recommended amounts (more is not better).
  • Choose products with child-resistant caps.
  • Safely store all hazardous materials out of reach of children and pets.
  • Use products in a well ventilated area.
  • Never pour HHW in the storm sewer or into the ground - it leads to Lake Nipissing and ground water

5 basic ingredients for alternative household products:

  • Baking Soda is inexpensive to buy, and it cleans, deodorizes and softens water.
  • Pure Soap biodegrades (decomposes naturally) safely and completely.
  • White Vinegar helps remove grease and grime and deodorizes as well.
  • Borax cleans, disinfects and also helps to soften water.
  • Washing Soda cuts grease, disinfects and removes stains.

How to Safely Transport and Dispose of your bio medical waste:

  • Put all Needles/Biomedical Waste into a rigid container.
  • Screw on the lid and tape the lid securely onto the container.
  • Write, "SHARPS," in big block letters on the container.
  • Bring your sharps container to any pharmacy and pick up a new empty container. This is a free service to all residents.

Needles/syringes used for injection at home will be accepted for disposal at the Household Hazardous Waste Depot. Place needles/syringes inside a proper “sharps” container (yellow in colour). If you do not have access to one of these containers, please place needles in a sturdy plastic container with a lid (tapped shut), and label it as “sharps”. Please do not place needles/syringes in bags or in your garbage can. Doing so is a safety hazard for our collection staff. Needles in bags will be rejected at the Hazardous Waste Depot.

You can also return sharps for free at a local pharmacy.

The Electronic Drop-Off Depot is open Wednesday to Saturday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Residents can drop off household electronics such as laptops, desktops, keyboards, monitors, TVs, projectors, radios, speakers, VCRs, DVD players, telephones (landline and cell phones), mp3 players, etc. free of charge. Businesses are asked to contact waste management at 705-474-0400 ext: 5221 before bringing electronics to the Depot.

Items with refrigerant are bannedfrom the Electronic Drop-Off Depot. These items include refrigerators, freezers, AC units, dehumidifiers and water coolers. The city accepts items with refrigerants at the Merrick Landfill. There are fees attached to these items. 

Old medicine may not work and could even harm you. Old/unused medicine must be disposed of safely. This includes all prescription and non-prescription medications, vitamins and herbal products.

Do not throw these products in the garbage; children or animals may get into it. They should not be flushed down the toilet or dumped down a drain as this will contaminate the environment.

Expired or unused medications are accepted at the Household Hazardous Waste Depot. You can also return medications for free at a local pharmacy.