Virginia DEQ - Disposal

Proper disposal of oil is the responsibility of all citizens of the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Managing Used Oil for Homeowners

Used oil contains chemical compounds that can be harmful to humans and other animals. When managed properly, used oil may again be of beneficial use. Used oil may be blended and recycled as a heating or industrial fuel and also may be re-refined and made into new lubricants. Persons who change the motor oil in their own vehicles are responsible for managing the used oil in a manner that is protective of human health and the environment.

Persons who change the oil in their own vehicles should:

  • Collect and store that oil in water tight containers.
  • Take used oil to the solid waste collection center for your county or city. Contact the local Public Works office to obtain information about the solid waste collection center near your residence. Used oil may also be collected by commercial recycling facilities and local businesses (e.g. local gas stations, some auto parts stores).
  • Store and dispose used oil filters in a manner that prevents oil discharges. It is recommended that you:

    - Drain as much oil from the filter as possible.
    - Place the oil filter in a plastic bag.
    - Dispose of the used oil filter at your local solid waste collection center (i.e. landfill/transfer station) or place with other household waste to be collected by your local waste collection agency.

Do Not:

  1. Mix used oil with other fluids such as water, antifreeze, degreasers, gasoline or other motor fuels, etc. Mixing used oil with other fluids make that oil more difficult to recycle and re-use.
  2. Dispose of oil by placing that oil into or on driveways, ditches, dry wells, surface water, roadways ( for dust control), storm sewers, etc. The discharge of oil into or upon state lands, waters, or storm sewers is a violation of Article 11 of Virginia Water Control Law. Persons discharging in this manner may be fined and/or be required to clean up that discharge.

Used oil (liquids) disposal:

There is a web page which provides detailed information regarding where and how to dispose of used oil, oil filters and antifreeze. Used motor oil, oil filters and antifreeze can be recycled or 'beneficially used.' Many service stations, auto repair shops, parts stores and local governments provide collection sites for these waste products. The current survey identified over 860 collection sites for these materials in Virginia. Go to the DEQ Recycling web page to see where you can dispose of your used liquids and other information about recycling.

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Oil-contaminated solids disposal

Guidelines for Special Waste Disposal

Regulations Applicable to Used Oil Storage Tanks:

USTs

Used oil is a regulated substance and USTs containing used oil are subject to the requirements of the UST Technical Regulation. Used oil USTs containing listed hazardous wastes or used oil that exhibits one or more hazardous characteristics are subject to the requirements of the Hazardous Waste Management Regulations.

ASTs

Individual used oil ASTs having a capacity of greater than 660 gallons of used oil ASTs at facilities having an aggregate aboveground capacity of greater than 1320 gallons are subject to the Facilities and Aboveground Storage Tank Registration requirements (9 VAC 25-130-10) and the closure requirements of the Aboveground Storage Tank Pollution Prevention regulation (9 VAC 25-140-10). ASTs containing listed hazardous wastes or used oil that exhibits one or more characteristics are subject to the requirements of the Hazardous Waste Management Regulations.

Releases of used oil from petroleum storage tanks must be reported to the DEQ Petroleum Program.

Reimbursements from VPSTF:

USTs 

Costs incurred for cleaning up releases of used oil reported after December 22, 1989, may be eligible for reimbursement.

ASTs

Costs incurred for cleaning up used oil discharges are not eligible for reimbursement. Fund access for discharges from ASTs is limited to those petroleum products on which a Fund fee is charged (see Article 10 of State Water Control Law; Sections 62.1-44.34:11.2.C and 62.1-44.34:13.

Managing Used Oil

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Virginia Department of
Environmental Quality
P.O. Box 1105
Richmond, VA 23218
(804) 698-4000


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