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How To Correctly Dipose Of Old Glaze

glaze old trash enviroment

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#1 Gwendeanne



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Posted 07 July 2014 - 11:27 AM


I have about 250 small containers (4oz -5oz) of old hard glaze. They are under glazes, and I believe they are all food safe.

I was wondering if anyone knew if I can just throw these in the trash with my household trash, or do I have to dispose of them in a environmentally safe way.


I got them about 6 years ago, when a friend's friend closed her paint our own pottery business. Most were hard when I got them, and thought I could do something with them, but never did. I know now I won't use them.


I know playing it safe, and finding an environmentally way to dispose of them, would be ideal, but it's not so easy where I live. I have to drive to another county and pay a fortunate. I'm willing to do that if I HAVE TO.


Thank you.

#2 Benzine


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Posted 07 July 2014 - 12:14 PM

As John B often says, "'Food Safe' just refers to the material, once it's been fired."  I've seen plenty of food safe glazes that contain heavy metals.


If you are sure you won't use them, make some large clay vessels, put the underglaze pucks in those and fire it to bisque temps.  If there is anything environmentally toxic in the underglaze, it will be made inert.


Also, as a bonus, the clay vessels could still be glaze for later use.  When you do the same thing to dispose of glaze, you have to pretty much toss the vessel.

"Anything worth believing, is worth questioning"

#3 Min


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Posted 07 July 2014 - 12:28 PM

If they still have their labels on why don't you try giving them away on Craigslist or some such place? Someone might be very happy to get them and put them to use.

#4 DirtRoads


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Posted 07 July 2014 - 12:47 PM

Are glazes classified as paint?  All the ones I use are water based.  


Waste disposal regulations vary by state.   I encountered this when I had stores in 4 different states.    Just guessing I think Colorado might have more regulations than Mississippi.   


I was referred to this guideline for the state of Mississippi because I was told glazes were the same as paint:


"allow latex or water based paints to sit out and evaporate leaving the pigments in the bottom of the can. After this has been done, then leave the top off the can and place the can(s) out with the garbage. Latex or oil-based paints can also be mixed with oil dry, saw dust, or kitty litter which will soak up the paint. The material can then be placed in a plastic bag and put in the garbage."  I remember this was the same in Al, TN and LA ... nothing in liquid form.


Here's the Colorado guide




Looks to be about the same as Ms.  It says "small quantities".  Maybe throw away 10 or so in every trash pick up?   Assuming glaze=paint.

#5 Mark369


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Posted 07 July 2014 - 07:04 PM

Give them away on craigslist.  they are usable.  If closer I would take them. 

Everything tastes better with cat hair in it !


Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it died knowing something! :wacko:

#6 bciskepottery


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Posted 07 July 2014 - 07:13 PM

Our county sponsors collection dates where households (no businesses) can bring hazardous waste/materials for proper disposal. Check with your local county/city government or trash collection company and see if they have such collections. They may also have a collection station at the dump that you can use.

#7 clayfeetpottery



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Posted 11 July 2014 - 07:32 AM

Send the to a local school!  They will love you for it:)

-with dirty feet and happy hands,




#8 Biglou13


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Posted 11 July 2014 - 08:13 AM

we have a BOB bucket.  that we use to dump old glazes, and as a rinse wash bucket for glazing.   when there is enough we we strain and suspend if needed.  right now I have one that is a beautiful dark green, another that tested out like a celadon green.

BOB stands for bottom of barrel.   it saves from disposing the nasties.  

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#9 Gwendeanne



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Posted 11 July 2014 - 08:53 AM

Thank you everyone for your suggestions and advice.


I tried to get rid of them two years ago. Most inquiries were not interested after they realized they are all dried up, even though that was clear.

I will try again on craigslist and maybe ask at the pottery/clay supply store in Denver if they know anymore. I actually think I have twice as much as I thought. They are in boxes in color categories already.


We are planning on moving, cleaning out a lot of stuff and downsizing, so I need to be selective about what I'm keeping and "might" use in the future. Pottery is a hobby for me, and I've been travelling so I haven't been in the studio for a while.


Again, Thanks, and good point about some unfired glazes having heavy metals.

#10 Diesel Clay

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Posted 12 July 2014 - 01:27 AM

I knew a potter who saved all his glaze scrap and sintered them into disk shapes that he used as stepping stones in his garden.

#11 drmyrtle


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Posted 13 July 2014 - 09:11 AM


Please contact me privately. I work in a community studio that has lots of children's programming, and they would be happy to use all of your containers. I will pay to ship them.

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