Hazardous Waste

Many common items like automotive products, household cleaners, pesticides and home improvement products are hazardous when used, stored or disposed of improperly.  Look for items that contain the following warnings on their labels: Danger, Warning, Caution, Poison, Combustible, Flammable, Corrosive, and Toxic.  Households and farms may participate for free, businesses receive discounted rates.

Thanks to our participants and volunteers, since our collection started in 1985, we have collected 1,045,922 pounds of unwanted chemicals.


  • Place all items in the trunk/rear of your vehicle. We will not unload items in your backseat.
  • Totes and boxes will not be returned.
  • Remain in your vehicle at all times.
  • Use of a face covering is strongly encouraged.
  • Don’t attend if you’re sick.

Locations and Times

Saturday, October 24, 9am to Noon
Manitowoc County Highway Shop
3500 HWY 310, Manitowoc

Farms and Businesses
Pre-registration is required by October 15th
Friday, October 23, 2pm to 4pm
Manitowoc County Highway Shop
3500 HWY 310, Manitowoc

All residents are encouraged to dispose of latex paint in their regular trash. Just take the lid off and let it dry or add paint hardener or cat litter. Once hardened, latex paint can be disposed of in the trash.


  • Pesticides
  • Herbicides
  • Insecticides
  • Fungicides
  • Rodenticides
  • Other poisonous repellents and banned chemicals (DDT)
  • Oil based paints
  • Oil (while used oil is accepted, please consider taking oil to one of the local drop offs)
  • Varnishes
  • Shellacs
  • Turpentine
  • Thinners
  • Lead based paints
  • Aerosols (full or part full)
  • Wood preservatives
  • Oven cleaners
  • Spot removers
  • Polishes
  • Contaminated oil
  • Antifreeze
  • Old gasoline
  • Acids/bases
  • Mothballs
  • Pool and spa chemicals
  • Photographic chemicals
  • Chemical strippers


  • Explosives such as ammunition
  • Radioactive materials such as smoke detectors
  • Compressed gas tanks and high pressure cylinders such as fire extinguishers and propane tanks
  • Unknown chemicals
  • Tires
  • Infectious and biological waste
  • Sharps and needles
  • Light bulbs
  • TVs and electronic components
  • Appliances
  • Freon gases
  • Pharmaceuticals

Other options exist for many unacceptable items.  Contact the Manitowoc County Recycling Center at 920-683-4333 for information.

Manitowoc County may modify these guidelines at any time to meet the needs of the program.


Household Guidelines

  • Household participants may dispose of acceptable hazardous waste items at no cost on October 24 between 9am and Noon.
  • Participants must be residents of Manitowoc County.
  • Wastes must be brought in the original containers.  Keep materials separate.  Do NOT mix chemicals.
  • Unknown substances and commercial waste will not be accepted.
  • To prepare materials for transport, line a cardboard box with a plastic bag.  Place them in the box and separate with cardboard.
  • When arriving at the Clean Sweep disposal site, slow down and follow traffic directions.
  • If unable to attend then ask a neighbor to take your materials for you.
  • Do not bring materials to the event before or after the listed time.

 Farm and Agricultural Guidelines

  • Farmers and rural property owners may bring chemicals from active and abandoned farms for disposal at no cost on October 23 between 2pm and 4pm.
  • Farms and agricultural businesses must pre-register by October 15.
  • Many types of agricultural operations are eligible for disposal service including: livestock, grain, holiday trees, poultry, fruit, vegetable and aquaculture.
  • Non-agriculture operations that bring in farm chemicals should register as a business and may be eligible for a 50% disposal subsidy.
  • Drums that have contained, or still contain agricultural chemicals will be accepted.

 Business Guidelines

  • Businesses must qualify as a Very Small Quantity Generator (VSQG) through self-certification to dispose of their waste.
  • VSQG produce less than 220 pounds of hazardous waste per month and store less than 2,205 pounds.  Other limits may apply.
  • Businesses can be retail, wholesale, manufacturing, commercial real estate, non-profit, schools, churches, golf courses and restaurants.
  • Businesses must pre-register by October 15.  Once registered, businesses will be scheduled a time to arrive on October 23 between 2pm and 4pm. Late registrants may not be eligible for reduced disposal rates.
  • Acceptable items include all those listed and chemicals associated with:
    • Business site and grounds maintenance such as pesticides, cleaners, disinfectants and vehicle chemicals.
    • Manufacturing and process chemicals such as oxidizers, acids, caustics, technical grade chemicals, laboratory reagents, polymers, reactive metals, mercury-based products, etc.
    • All sludge's (weight scale pits, sump pits) are eligible for Clean Sweep disposal.  Agrichemical sludge (pesticide containing sludge from mixing and loading operations) is eligible for a 50 percent disposal subsidy.


Farms and businesses must register for the Clean Sweep by October 15. Registration materials can be obtained by contacting the Manitowoc County Recycling Center at 920-683-4333. Information on the type and quantity of chemicals you are bringing in may be required. 


Donate your time to help staff the Manitowoc County Hazardous Waste Clean Sweep on Saturday, October 24 from 8:30am to Noon at the Manitowoc County Highway Shop.  Help survey and greet participants, direct traffic and assist with the thermometer exchange program.  Call the Manitowoc County Recycling Center at 920-683-4333 for details and to sign up!

Volunteers at the Clean Sweep are provided with beverages and lunch.   


Clean Sweep is sponsored by the following agencies:

Manitowoc County Solid Waste Dept., Sheboygan County Planning and Resources Dept., Fond du Lac County Land and Water Conservation Department, The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP), Waste Management Inc., Ascend Services Inc., and the Manitowoc County UW Extension.