Oil filters are classified as liquid waste and cannot be placed in landfill. Filters retain considerable amounts of oil which carries a number of toxins and can contaminate the soil and waterways. They should be recycled to recover oil and valuable metal.
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Oil filters are a significant industrial waste stream and should be recycled to recover oil and metal. Used filters are considered to be liquid waste and it is illegal to put them in a bin or skip for disposal untreated. Automotive filters retain significant amounts of oil and are not suitable for landfill disposal as oil picks carries a variety of contaminants when used in engines and transmissions including lead, dioxins and benzene. When disposed of incorrectly it can harm the land, waterways, underground reservoirs and the marine environment.
There are a number of commercial auto parts and metal recyclers who will recycle oil filters for a charge. For operations with a high number of oil filters there are machines available for on site recycling.
What Happened When It’s Recycled?
Best practice management of oil filter wastes involves the use of a mechanical crusher to remove and recover most of the oil they contain.The free oil removed from the filter must be contained, managed and stored separately from the filters. Drained and mechanically crushed oil filters are then classified as solid waste. Many metal recyclers will accept the crushed filters for scrap metal.