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How to dispose of wood preservatives safely

Here are some answers to regularly asked questions.

What are wood preservatives?

True wood preservatives contain chemicals that are poisonous to the organisms that make wood decay or rot.  Some products such as sealants and stains protect the wood by keeping out water, but these are paint products not wood preservatives. For information on the disposal of paint products, see the information sheet on paint which is on this website.

Are wood preservatives hazardous?

True wood preservatives contain chemicals that can become a health and environmental hazard. Improper disposal - in the garbage, on the ground or down the drain or stormwater - can contaminate lakes, streams and other drinking water supplies.

What can I do with leftover wood preservatives?

First check the product label. If your wood preservatives do not contain creosote or pentachlorophenol, the best way to get rid of leftovers is to use them up.

If you can't use up your leftover wood preservatives, give them to someone who can. Landscapers, friends or neighbours may be able to use your leftover wood preservatives.

What can I do with wood preservatives containing creosote or pentachlorophenol or wood preservatives that I cannot use?

Wood preservatives that contain creosote or pentachlorophenol, or wood preservatives that cannot be used up should be safely stored until you can dispose of them at the Household Chemical Clean Out Collection which is held in the Shire yearly.

Contact us

If you have any questions about hazardous waste, contact:

  • Council's Waste Minimisation Officer T: 02 4474 1029
  • The Office of Environment and Heritage T: 131 555