Unwanted paint can clutter your basement, garage, or crawl space. If this is your home, you are not alone. It is estimated that more than 1 million gallons of paint remnants are stored in Colorado homes and businesses.
In an eco-friendly county like Chaffee County, proper disposal of waste is a testament to our commitment to protecting this beautiful place.
Thankfully, Chaffee County has two collection points where you can easily and responsibly recycle this unwanted waste. Sherwin-Williams and Ace Hardware have teamed up with Colorado’s PaintCare nonprofit, which oversees his stewardship program, to provide the solution this community needs.
Drop your leftover paint at one of these Chaffee County PaintCare sites, but be sure to check the list of items accepted before you head out.
Exit, Colorado 81201
Buena Vista Ace Hardware
29785 US Highway 24N
Buena Vista, Colorado 81211
Here are some frequently asked questions about paint recycling.
What types of products can be recycled at the PaintCare drop-off site?
The PaintCare drop-off site accepts latex and oil-based house paints, stains and varnishes in containers up to 5 gallons. The site will not accept aerosols (spray paint or other spray products), containers without original labels, or leaking or empty containers. Please see the table below to better understand which products the site will and will not accept.
To dispose of non-PaintCare products, contact your local household hazardous waste (HHW) program, landfill, or Colorado Public Health and Environmental Service. Information for the Chaffee County landfill is available by calling (719) 539-3738. CDPHE Customer Technical Support is available by calling (303) 692-3320.
Paint care products that can be received at the pick-up location
- Interior and exterior architectural coatings: latex, acrylic, water-based, alkyd, oil-based, enamel (including textured coatings)
- Deck coatings, floor paints (including elastomers)
- primer, sealer, undercoater
- shellac, lacquer, varnish, urethane (single component)
- Waterproof concrete/masonry/wood sealers and repellents (not tar or bitumen based)
- metal coating, rust prevention
- Field and lawn paint
Products not accepted at the PaintCare drop-off site
- thinners, mineral spirits, solvents
- Aerosol paint (spray can)
- Automotive and marine coatings
- arts & craft paints
- Caulk, Epoxy, Adhesive, Adhesive
- paint additives, coloring agents, coloring agents, resins
- Wood preservatives (including pesticides)
- roof patches and repairs
- Asphalt, tar and bitumen based products
- two-component coating
- deck cleaner
- traffic and road marking paints
- Industrial maintenance (IM) coating
- Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) (Shop Application) Painting and Finishing
How can I recycle paint?
To use the PaintCare drop-off site, make sure the lid is securely fastened, the container is not leaking, and the paint is in the original container with the original manufacturer’s label. Stock up on unwanted paints, stains, and other approved PaintCare products. Do not mix paint or throw away empty paint cans.
Pack the paint cans in a sturdy cardboard box in your car and take it to the PaintCare drop-off site. Call the site in advance to check hours and availability. Please ask store staff for assistance before bringing your paint to the collection point.
Do all paint retailers collect paint?
No. Retailers voluntarily serve as PaintCare drop-off sites. Not all paint and hardware stores have enough storage space or staff. If you know of a store near you that would like to be a PaintCare drop-off site, ask the store manager to contact PaintCare.
How much paint can you remove?
PaintCare sites have limits on the amount of paint they accept, but all sites require at least 5 gallons of paint per visit. Some sites take longer. Call the site ahead of time to see if they can accommodate the time and the type and amount of paint you plan to bring.
Is there a cost to bring paint in for recycling?
There is no cost to residents or businesses to bring in unwanted paint for recycling. A small fee for the sale of new paint (called the PaintCare fee) funds all aspects of the program including paint collection, transportation, processing, and general education. New paint from 0.5 pint to less than 1 gallon costs $0.35. $0.75 for 1 to 2 gallons and $1.60 for over 2 to 5 gallons. Businesses, organizations, and households with 100 gallons or more of paint to recycle can request free pickup on site. Some restrictions apply. More information and a request form can be found on the PaintCare website.
Why should leftover paint be recycled?
Recycling paint is just one way to make the environment better. PaintCare helps ensure “the best and best use” of paint collected in the program. This includes giving away high-quality materials as is, recycling them, or putting them to another beneficial use. Most paints received by PaintCare are latex-based and can be remixed into recycled content paint by processors. To date, PaintCare nationwide he has processed more than 50 million gallons of paint, saving millions of dollars in state and local governments. If it cannot be recycled or otherwise used, dry it and dispose of it properly.
The next time you think about storing or disposing of unused, unwanted paint, think again and recycle it with Paint Care at one of your local collection points. For more information on PaintCare, please visit www.paintcare.org.
Kevin Lynch, PaintCare Colorado Program Manager