Mineral Spirits & Parts Washers


Spent (used) mineral spirits normally represent the largest waste source of vehicle repair shops. Following the DOs and DON'Ts will save you money, and make it easier to stay in compliance with environmental regulations. Many older parts washers use mineral spirits, Stoddard solution, and petroleum naphtha that may be hazardous due to ignitability. Avoid contamination of non-hazardous mineral spirits with other hazardous wastes (e.g. brake cleaner, carburetor cleaner, etc.).

  • make sure mineral spirits is too dirty for use before exchanging for new mineral spirits
  • consider switching to a water based parts washer that does not use mineral spirits
  • keep accurate records of spent mineral spirits disposal for 3 years
  • use only the minimum number of parts washers necessary to your operation
  • lease/purchase only parts washers that have a recycling/filtration system
  • use non-hazardous high flash mineral spirits in parts washers
  • dispose of spent mineral spirits by pouring them on the ground or into drains, or by evaporating them in the air
  • mix mineral spirits with any other wastes
  • use aerosol spray cans near your parts washer

For more information concerning the proper handling of mineral spirits parts washers, contact the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Bureau of Solid and Hazardous Waste (http://www.dep.state.fl.us/waste/categories/shw/default.htm) or the Hinkley Center for Solid and Hazardous Waste Management (http://Hinkleycenter.org). This information is offered only as guidance. Specific requirements may vary with individual processes and/or businesses.