Have you ever wondered if the Wastemobile is a large truck or van? You’re not alone – it’s a common question we get asked.
The answer is no, it’s not a vehicle. The Wastemobile’s namesake comes from the fact that it was the first traveling hazardous waste collection program in the nation. Created in 1989, the Wastemobile visits rural, suburban, and urban areas in King County to provide more convenient options for safe disposal of hazardous waste.
What’s it like to visit the Wastemobile? It’s easy and convenient – you don’t even have to get out of your car. Watch this video to come to the Auburn Wastemobile with us!
Here’s a more detailed breakdown of the process.
Identifying hazardous waste
At home, you can identify if you have hazardous waste by looking at the product label for the signal words: CAUTION, WARNING, DANGER, or POISON. If you see those signal words, you likely have haz waste. Then, visit our website to see a list of accepted items and quantity limits.
Getting ready for transport
Be sure to pack your items so that they are safe and secure while you’re transporting them from your home to the Wastemobile.
- Don’t mix or combine products.
- Keep products in their original containers whenever possible.
- Label products that are not marked.
- Secure products so they won’t tip or leak.
- Cover and tie down your load. Please stay in your vehicle while unloading at the Auburn Wastemobile or traveling Wastemobile events.
- Don’t transport products in the passenger compartment of your vehicle.
Batteries and fluorescent light bulbs are common items that customers bring to the Wastemobile. There are some quick things you can do to prep these items for disposal that help protect you and our staff:
- Tape battery terminals (the ends of each battery - both of them) with scotch tape AND sort batteries by type (i.e. AA, AAA, etc.) to prevent accidental battery fires.
- Package light bulbs so they don’t break during transport. Put broken bulbs in a plastic bag or closed container and dispose of as hazardous waste. There is a limit of 10 bulbs and lamps (combined) per vehicle, per visit.
Arriving at the Wastemobile
Whether you come to our traveling Wastemobile events around King County or come to our permanent Auburn Wastemobile location, look for signs once you get close to the collection site. They will have helpful information about where to go and to stay in your vehicle when visiting any Wastemobile location. Once you pull in, on-site staff will greet you and check out what you’ve brought for disposal. If you’ve prepped well, this step can take less than five minutes to complete! Then, you’ll be on your way back to a home with less hazardous waste that can harm people, pets, and environment.
Bonus: check out the reuse cart
Our disposal locations have a reusable household products cart where customers can grab automotive, cleaning, and home improvement products that are still in good condition that others no longer have a use for. These items do not have a cost, but you must read and sign a release form prior to taking any items.
Eligible businesses can visit the Wastemobile
Small businesses may be eligible to receive hazardous waste disposal up to four times a year at the Wastemobile and our other disposal locations. Learn more about eligibility requirements and safe disposal for businesses.