Skip to main content


Recycling Updates Newsletter

Paint, latex

Full or partially full cans of liquid paint should not be placed in the trash, and are not accepted by most trash haulers.

Latex paints are water-based paints. Enamels, varnishes, shellacs, lacquers, stains, and sealers are all oil-based paints.

One way to identify paint as latex or oil-based is by reading the cleanup instructions on the can. If water can be used for cleanup, the paint is latex paint. If solvents, such as paint thinner or mineral spirits must be used, the paint is oil-based.

Paint should not be poured down the drain, dumped on the ground, or thrown in the trash. When poured down the drain, many of the chemicals in paint will not be treated by wastewater treatment or septic systems. The untreated chemicals may be discharged to lakes, streams, or ground water, and contaminate these waters.

Check with local schools, churches, or performing art centers. They make take donations of neutral color latex paints for drama productions or graffiti removal.

Highly flammable paints, such as epoxy base, stains, lacquers, varnishes, or shellacs, or paints containing heavy metals, such as cadmium or lead, must be taken to the Larimer County Household Hazardous Waste Collection Facility.

Name/Address/Hours Comments
City of Fort Collins: Timberline Recycling Center - Hard to Recycle Materials Yard
1903 S. Timberline Road, Fort Collins
Phone: 970-221-6600

The Hard to Recycle Materials Yard is co-located at the Timberline Recycling Drop-Off Center.

For a $5 facility use fee (additional fees apply for certain materials, see website for more details) the hard to recycle materials yard will accept the following materials:

  • Paint: (No entry fee when ONLY dropping off paint) Oil-based paint & enamel, Latex paint (interior/exterior architectural paints), Various other coverings (deck coating, varnish, floor paint, primer, sealer, stains)
  • Used Motor Oil
  • Antifreeze
  • Batteries
  • Cooking Oil: 25 gallon per visit limit
  • Electronic Waste: Additional fees apply
  • Scrap Metal: Includes non-refrigeration types of appliances
  • Aggregates: Concrete/Asphalt (no rebar); broken ceramic dishes; toilets and porcelain (non-metal) sinks. Must remove all hardware and seats
  • Organic Debris: Additional fees apply
  • Unpainted, untreated lumber including pallets:  additional fees apply (No plywood or composite boards)
Larimer County Household Hazardous Waste Facility
5887 S. Taft Hill Road, Fort Collins
Phone: (970) 498-5771

On the same property as the Larimer County Landfill, located south of Fort Collins on Taft Hill Rd. (about two miles south of Harmony Rd.).  Please refer to the Larimer County Solid Waste website for hours.

Sharps must be brought in an OSHA-approved sharps container, which can be purchased from most local drug stores. Needles brought in any other containers or loose needles will not be accepted.

There is a self-serve used motor oil depository located near the Household Hazardous Waste center and is open only when the landfill is open.

Appliances containing Freon, like air conditioners, freezers, and refrigerators, are charged a set fee, which includes a handling charge and Freon removal. All other appliances and large items are charged the same as regular trash.

Accepts propane tanks 30 gallon or less, helium tanks and small liquid fuel stove canisters

Also at the landfill are an e-waste recycling facility, and a recycling facility similar to the City's drop-off recycling site.



Accepts all brands of old house paint, stain and varnish.  See the paintcare website for more details and specifics on which types of paint they accept and drop off locations