How to clean painting equipment and dispose of the water etc. used

by MillyMolly

I am seriously thinking of getting a paint sprayer. My big hesitation involves cleaning it after use. All that paint residue that would have to be washed away...where can I responsibly dispose of paint and put the dirty water? I understand if you put it on the ground it goes into the water table, if you pour it down the drain it could affect the local waterways. What do other people do with this stuff? I would be grateful for your input please.

  7 answers
  • Letting it run into the streets or a storm drain can get you in big trouble in some area's especially if it heads out to a waterway. I really have no issues with the ground aspect as it really has no chance at all to affect the ground water especially with how diluted it would be. With that, get all the paint you can out from the pickup tube (back into the paint), place another bucket of clean water there - prime it and spray the left over paint into the paint bucket. Once it starts spitting, spray the rest into a holding tray & let the water evaporate. Scrape out any dry residue into a trash can.
  • MillyMolly MillyMolly on Mar 06, 2015
    Thank you for your reply @SLS Construction and Building. It makes sense letting the water evaporate and the residue harden, I hadn't even thought of that. Good to get a professional opinion too. :)
  • Kimberly A Kimberly A on Mar 07, 2015
    We used a paint sprayer to paint the interior walls of our addition after we finished building it and we did exactly what @SLS Construction and Building stated to do. Not only are you protecting your environment but you are more thoroughly cleaning your sprayer in preparation for its next use. If you have any project that is big at all, the sprayer will more than pay for itself in one use, I know ours did and we've used it quite a bit since then. Good luck!
  • Debbee Anthony Carlson Debbee Anthony Carlson on Mar 07, 2015
    We live in the country and I always just wash my stuff in the sink.
  • Duv310660 Duv310660 on Mar 07, 2015
    If it is not a water-based. non-toxic paint it should not be mingled with your water system - it's toxic and plus - well, every human society that has ever failed has done so while peeing in their own pool! Everyone has different by-laws on this, if you wish to be responsible then find out what your area requires you to do with your toxic waste and follow through. In my area, we have an automated system that takes old dried paint in the can it came in, but before that I had to drive this and other hazardous wastes to our depot.
  • Moxie Moxie on Mar 07, 2015
    you can get a product at the big box stores to add to the paint that makes it go solid also
  • Justme Justme on Mar 07, 2015
    I wrap rollers in saran wrap and keep in the freezer til the job is done. Scrape excess back into the can, let the roller dry and throw it away. Also I line the tray with foil before adding the paint, scrape excess back into can, let it dry and throw it away. Saves time, water and it's the best I can do.
    • MillyMolly MillyMolly on Mar 09, 2015
      @Justme Thanks @Justme...I do the same with rollers but I want to get a sprayer and they looked so difficult to clean and would use a lot more water for it and I didn't know what to do with that.