Is All Used Oil Considered Waste Oil?

December 10, 2020

You might be under the impression that all used oil is waste oil, but the two terms mean different things. In fact, “used oil” is a regulatory term. When you’re getting ready to get rid of your unwanted oils, it’s important to separate them and label your containers accordingly, before you send it off to a reliable waste oil disposal service in New Orleans, LA.

Here’s how to tell the difference.

What is used oil?

Used oil is defined by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as “any oil that has been refined from crude oil or any synthetic oil that has been used and as a result of such use is contaminated by physical or chemical impurities. Simply put, used oil is exactly what its name implies—any petroleum-based or synthetic oil that has been used.”

As you use oil, dirt, metal shavings, chemicals, water and other substances can get mixed in, which lowers its performance. It’s important to swap out old, used oil for fresh oil to ensure the best results possible.

Used oil can be recycled over and over again. In fact, the EPA estimates that 380 million gallons of used oil are recycled each year. It can be re-refined, filtered, used for energy recovery and other applications. This is an environmentally-friendly way to remove contaminants and get the most out of the oil.

What is waste oil?

Waste oil is considered oil that either has been contaminated (without being used), cannot be used or that you decide you don’t want to use. It might be off-specifications or contaminated. For example, imagine opening a drum of oil only to find out that it has been contaminated with dirt. You can’t use it for its intended purpose, so you’ll need to get rid of it safely.

Waste oil may or may not display the characteristics of hazardous waste—if it does, you’ll need to follow state and federal regulations for disposing of it properly.

What should I do with my used or waste oil?

When you have used or waste oil at your business, you’ll need the help of a reliable waste oil disposal service in New Orleans, LA to get rid of it. Businesses like Safeway Used Oil and Grease collect used and waste oil, then make sure it’s safely recycled for a number of different purposes. Not only is it easier on you (you don’t need another item on your to-do list), but you’re also reassured that the oil is disposed of properly.

Whatever you do, don’t pour your used or waste oil down the drain or into the ground. These oils are caustic and can cause a great deal of environmental damage—that’s why the EPA has regulations concerning how, when and where used oil can be disposed of or recycled.

If you need help getting rid of your used or waste oil, the team at Safeway Used Oil and Grease can help. Call us today to learn more about our reliable waste oil disposal services.

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