Flammable household items disposal | Commercial Recycling News

How to dispose of flammable household items

According to a recent report from the National Fire Chiefs Council, each year, UK fire and rescue services “attend around 300 significant waste fires,” many of which are caused by the improper disposal of waste.

Simply put, many home and business owners are not aware of the extra precautions they should take when handling potentially hazardous waste, such as flammable household items. While this is often an accident, it can lead to significant environmental damage at a time when sustainability is essential to our long-term survival. For example, fires can destroy habitats and pollute air and water sources, leading to a string of additional issues.

As such, the severity of the issues means that it’s essential homeowners are aware of these dangers and take appropriate action when managing their household waste moving forward.

In this guide, we’ll explore different kinds of flammable household waste alongside the steps you can take to dispose of it safely and correctly moving forward.

What are some examples of flammable household waste?

There are many items lying around your home that are flammable or combustible. This includes:

  • Vapes & E-cigarettes 
  • Disposable BBQs
  • Gas canisters
  • Batteries
  • Aerosols 
  • Cleaning products 
  • Petrol canisters
  • Matches

What makes something flammable?

Flammable materials or products are those that can burn or ignite easily when exposed to certain conditions. This is slightly different from a combustible item, as it requires a little more effort to set alight. Generally, a household item may be considered flammable if it contains fuel or other ignitable chemicals. Most of these items will be marked with a fire symbol that can remind the user of their flammable nature.

What are the risks associated with disposing of these items alongside general waste?

The most significant risk associated with disposing of flammable household items alongside your general waste is waste fires, as mentioned above. Firstly, they present a significant health and safety risk for anyone who encounters them, whether that be passersby or emergency services personnel.

Waste fires not only put the health and safety of others at risk, but they can also cause widespread environmental damage. For example, when burning, these materials can release toxic chemicals and fumes into the air, resulting in air pollution. This is particularly concerning when you consider that “virtually every home in the UK is already subjected to air pollution above World Health Organization guidelines.” As such, any fires would only serve to make this already worrying situation worse – while also threatening local wildlife.

Furthermore, if not contained correctly, these fires can quickly spread, causing additional environmental and property damage. As such, every effort should be taken to avoid or prevent waste fires moving forward, which means learning how to dispose of flammable waste correctly in accordance with all government guidelines.

One of the easiest ways in which you can help to prevent waste fires is by ensuring you dispose of household flammable waste correctly. For example, you should:

  • Identify & separate flammable items from general waste. As a general rule of thumb, flammable items should not be disposed of alongside your regular waste. Instead, you should dispose of them at specialised collection points.
  • Don’t put hot waste directly into the bin. Another key tip to remember when disposing of flammable waste is that you should not put anything that is still hot or smouldering into your bin. For example, if using a disposable BBQ, you should wait until it has thoroughly cooled down before you dispose of it.
  • Do your research. Researching potentially flammable items ahead of time will help you to determine how they ought to be disposed of. For example, it is now possible to recycle some aerosol cans. You should also ensure that you research local waste disposal guidance, as this can sometimes vary from location to location.

Where can you dispose of flammable household waste?

If you’re concerned about managing potentially flammable household waste, we’re here to help. Commercial Recycling have multiple disposal points where you can drop off these items alongside other materials, including bases in:

If you’d like to learn more about disposing of flammable household items, please do not hesitate to get in touch today.

Before tipping your flammable waste with us, we would recommend you download our tipping price list.

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