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Environmental Health and Safety

Environmental Health and Safety

Waste Oil Disposal


 Used oils such as engine lubrication oil, hydraulic fluids, and gear oils used in cars, bikes, or lawnmowers can pollute the environment if it is not disposed of properly. Used oil must be recycled or disposed of properly by local waste management authorities or automotive repair shops. Used oil filters pose similar waste concerns.

Hold used oil for recycling in appropriate containers labeled with the words "Used Oil". Keep the container in good condition, protected from weather, and stored on an oil impermeable surface. Store used oil filters in appropriate containers clearly labeled "Used Oil Filters," and maintained as described above for used oil. Contact EH&S for assistance in disposing of used oil and oil filters.

Benefits of recycling oil

  • Recycling used oil keeps it from polluting soil and water.
  • Motor oil does not wear out it just gets dirty, so recycling it saves a valuable resource.


Just the Facts

  • Recycling just 2 gallons of used oil can generate enough electricity to run the average household for almost 24 hours.
  • It takes 42 gallons of crude oil, but only 1 gallon of used oil, to produce 2.5 quarts of new, high-quality lubricating oil (Source: American Petroleum Institute)