Does Lowe’s Take Old Paint? (Try This Instead)

After buying and using a new can of paint for a redecorating project, the paint can usually end up in a dark corner of the garage, collecting dust.

Before you know it, years have passed, and you’re left wondering how you’re going to dispose of the old paint!

A home improvement store like Lowe’s seems like a sensible place to take used paint, but will it actually accept it? I did some research, and here’s what I found!

Does Lowe’s Take Old Paint In 2021?

Unfortunately, Lowe’s does not run a paint disposal or recycling program as of 2021. Individual Lowe’s stores may have its own policy regarding old paint, so it’s worth calling your local store to check before recycling by other means. Alternatively, customers can donate old paint to community centers or sell it online via marketplaces.

In most cases, Lowe’s won’t be able to take on your old paint. But why is this? Read on to find out more, including alternative methods of disposing of old paint!

Why Doesn’t Lowe’s Take Old Paint?

Lowe’s does not operate a store-wide paint disposal program because the range of state laws regarding paint recycling and hazardous substances would make it hard to implement.

Several types of paint contain metallic substances that are dangerous to dispose of with your regular trash. As such, paint is subject to several laws that make disposal rather challenging.

How Does Lowe’s Help with Disposing of Old Paint?

How Does Lowe’s Help with Disposing of Old Paint?

While Lowe’s does not take in old paint for recycling, it does provide a how-to guide on its website for the safe storage and disposal of different types of paint.

In fact, Lowe’s includes a step-by-step guide to disposing of different paints.

The steps that Lowe’s recommends for the disposal of latex paint are as follows:

  1. Mix the paint with cat litter, provided that the remaining quantity of the paint is less than half a can. If you have more than half a can of paint, firstly pour the paint into a box or trash can before adding the cat litter. 
  2. Stir the cat litter into the paint until it thickens, and leave the mixture to sit for at least an hour.
  3. Throw the dried mixture into the garbage, making sure to remove the lid of the paint can.

Finally, Lowe’s also stocks all the necessary items to dispose of latex paint manually in line with the step-by-step guide listed above.

Because of its toxicity, Lowe’s recommends disposing of oil-based paint at a designated disposal or drop-off center. You can find the nearest oil-based paint disposal site by checking with your local officials.

In addition, the how-to guide provides useful information on how to store paint in order to extend its shelf life properly.

Some of the tips Loew’s offers include advice on sealing the can, where to place it, and how to reopen it.

What Products Does Lowe’s Sell To Help Dispose Of Old Paint?

Lowe’s stocks a number of items that you can use to manually dispose of old paint safely.

For example, three different types of cat litter are currently available on Lowe’s website. You can mix these cat litters with latex paint to create a hardened mixture that is safe for regular waste disposal.

For a faster paint disposal method, Lowe’s also stocks Krud Kutter Waste Paint Hardener, which can harden old paint within minutes.

This product comes in a couple of sizes and is available in a 640-oz quantity and a cheaper 3.5-oz version.

Where Can I Dispose Of Old Paint Instead?

While Lowe’s does not take in used paint, many Sherwin-Williams retail stores will accept old latex paint for disposal.

Sherman-Williams will not, however, take in oil-based paints, as these are classified as hazardous.

If your paint is yet to expire, it is always worth asking your local community to see if someone might have use for it. Homeless centers, drama clubs, or other organizations with limited budgets can be great places to recycle used paint.

In addition, many non-profit organizations such as Habitat for Humanity accept donations of used paint as long as it has not hardened and is still in the original container.

To know more, you can also read our posts on whether or not Lowe’s recycles light bulbs, if Lowe’s buys used appliances, and if Lowe’s hauls away old appliances.

Conclusion

Lowe’s does not accept any kind of old or opened paint. However, if you’ve purchased paint from Lowe’s and haven’t opened it, you can return it under the store’s standard return policy.

Lowe’s does provide a helpful guide to manual latex paint disposal on its website, including step-by-step instructions.

With that, Lowe’s sells various cat litter brands and special paint hardening products that you can use to dispose of old paint safely.

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About the author

Marques Thomas graduated with an MBA in 2011. Since then, Marques has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Marques is also the head writer and founder of QuerySprout.com.

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