• Toxic to small children and may be deadly to animals attracted by its sweet taste.
  • Spent antifreeze may contain metals from the engine (lead, zinc, copper).
  • Can disturb the biological action of sewage treatment and septic systems.


  • Collect and store spent antifreeze in sealed, labeled, plastic or metal container, away from heat sources, children and pets.
  • Never store in a beverage container; original container is best.
  • Clean up spills with absorbent (kitty litter, shredded newspaper, vermiculite, rags, etc.); bag waste materials and discard in the trash. Flush soiled area with water.
  • Do not mix with oil.
  • Do not dispose down the drain without approval from your wastewater treatment facility.
  • Do not dispose of in the trash: liquid wastes can leak in a trash truck.

Management Options

Unused Antifreeze

  • Antifreeze does not go bad. Donate to a friend who can use it, a mechanic or school auto shop.

Spent Antifreeze

  • Take to community recycling center, if available.
  • Take to service station or repair garage that accepts spent antifreeze.
  • Check with your local wastewater treatment facility to see if they can accept small amounts of antifreeze.
  • If recycling option is not available, take to next household hazardous waste collection day or a commercial hazardous waste facility.

Note: More environmentally-friendly propylene glycol may contain the same pollutants after use and should be disposed as suggested above.

Empty Containers

  • Dispose of these in the trash.

Some auto repair shops, quick oil change businesses and new car dealerships accept spent antifreeze at no charge. Check online or in the Yellow Pages for one in your area.