Paint and paint cans: latex (water-based) paint

Recommended disposal options


Recycle unused paint at a PaintCare retail drop-off site near you. Products must be in original containers with a label and secure lid. Containers must be no larger than 5 gallons. Call retailers first for requirements.

Other disposal options

Empty cans: Put in the garbage

Empty cans and cans with completely dried latex paint (water-based) may be put in the garbage. You can dry out small amounts of latex paint at home.

  • Remove lid and put lid in garbage.
  • Stir occasionally to speed up the drying process.
  • Leave the cover off so your waste hauler can see that the can is empty and dry.
  • Put the paint can on top of your garbage can.

Hennepin County drop-off facilities

See restrictions and instructions below:

Drop-off facilities accept:

Cans of latex paint more than 1/4 full are accepted. Empty cans and cans with completely dried latex paint (not oil-based) may be put in the garbage.


No charge

Drop-off limit

Three 5-gallon pails of latex paint per household per 12 month period. This limit does not apply to 1-gallon-sized cans.

Drop-off facilities do not accept:

No paint or paint cans used for business purposes, including home businesses and property managers.

Find paint and paint can disposal options for businesses at

Rethink and reduce

Buy only the amount of paint that you need. See the Paint Calculator to calculate the amount of paint you need.

Household hazardous waste

For information about storing and transporting latex paint, see guidelines for household hazardous waste.

Learn more