Every day, we use a variety of household products, whether to clean our home, maintain our vehicle, do various jobs or for our personal use.
Did you know that some products can cause fires, and that even just varnish on a cloth can sometimes burst into flame?
Here are some tips for storing and disposing of your products safely:
The importance of properly storing hazardous products
Many products that can cause fires are found throughout our homes. These include lighter fluid, paint, varnish, solvents and pool cleaners.
Because they can catch fire, certain precautions must be taken when storing flammable or combustible products:
- Follow the storage instructions on the product label.
- Keep products in their original containers and out of reach of children and pets.
- Store products that may release harmful vapours outside the home and avoid storing them in an area prone to temperature fluctuations.
Find out what the hazard symbols on products mean.
How to dispose of flammable or combustible products
Be aware that flammable or combustible products cannot be disposed of in the same way as ordinary waste. If these products are not disposed of in the right place, they can ignite and cause serious damage. Here’s how to dispose of them safely:
- After completing your work, place rags and paper towels with combustible materials on them in a fireproof container.
- Never dispose of a combustible product in the toilet or sink.
- Never reuse an empty container that had a chemical product in it.
- Never throw chemical product containers into a fire.
- Check with your municipality to find out how to dispose of hazardous materials. You can also consult the RECYC-QUÉBEC website to find out where to deposit these products.
Be careful with bleach
Many people use bleach for various household tasks. Be aware that you should be extra careful when using this product. Bleach is corrosive, which means it can irritate or burn your skin or eyes. In addition, if mixed with other chemicals, it can release very dangerous toxic gases. It is therefore important to carefully follow all of the manufacturer’s instructions when using bleach.
Special treatment for lithium batteries
Is your old laptop broken and you plan to get rid of it? Definitely don’t put it in your blue bin. Just like cell phones, certain watches and other items, it contains a lithium battery.
When thrown into your bin, these batteries can break and explode during transport in the garbage truck or during sorting. To dispose of them safely, you can take them to the nearest sorting centre or contact your municipality to find drop-off locations.
Want more tips on how to prevent fires? Read our article 6 tips to prevent house fire risks.