Many homeowners are uncertain about how to dispose of paint properly, so the cans just stack up. It’s true that you can’t just toss paint cans into your trash bin, but the options for disposal are actually not very difficult. It does take a little bit of time and effort, which is why most people don’t do it regularly. But cycling out the old cans each time you paint will save you work in the long run and give you more storage space in the short term.
Most area communities offer locations to dispose of hazardous waste. Those locations can be found on the Web sites of local jurisdictions. D.C. residents can take old paint to Fort Totten Transfer Station on the first Saturday of each month. Alternatively, you can dry out your unused paint before throwing it away with your household trash. Small amounts of paint will dry if you simply leave the lid off, but larger amounts require combining the unused paint with absorbent materials such as cat litter or sand. You can also buy paint hardener at a hardware store.