Disposing of old packaged chemicals?

Discussion in 'Darkroom Developing and Printing' started by Leonard Evens, Jul 18, 2003.

  1. I have to dismantle my darkroom because I am selling my house and moving
    to a condo. Recently I've just been developing b/w film and scanning
    it, and I plan to continue that. But I have some very old chemicals
    which have been sitting in a drawer for many years. I am sure none of
    them are usable.

    Should I just dump them in the trash which will ultimately go into some
    landfill? Or should I empty them down the drain and let the water run
    for a while? Whatever I do I will do a bit at a time.
    Leonard Evens, Jul 18, 2003
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  2. Leonard Evens

    John Guest

    What are they ?

    John, Jul 18, 2003
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  3. Leonard Evens

    Jim Phelps Guest


    Does your community have hazardous material turn in? Kinda like a place
    where you turn in paints, batteries, old medicines, etc.? Some could be
    dumped (like stop bath - which is just strong vinegar anyway), but turn-in
    would be the 'green' way.


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    Jim Phelps, Jul 18, 2003
  4. Keep the packages intact and dispose of them in the trash.
    Michael Scarpitti, Jul 18, 2003
  5. Don't be so sure. If the packages have never been opened, the chemicals may
    well be fine. Perhaps you want to offer them up to people on the list for
    the cost of postage; better to have them used than to have them put in a

    Jim MacKenzie, Jul 18, 2003
  6. I generally try to be "green", but my local community doesn't make it
    easy to turn it hazardous materials. Usually you can do it once a year
    at some designated location, and I can't wait for the next time that
    occurs. But I will certainly check again.

    I have some color chemicals which I should save for the hazardous
    materials dump, but I hope that developer, stop bath, and fixer could be
    safely disposed normally.
    Leonard Evens, Jul 18, 2003
  7. The chemicals are over 20 years old; some may be older. If anyone wants
    them, s/he should let me know, and I will be glad to send them along.
    Leonard Evens, Jul 18, 2003
  8. What are they, specifically? Where are you? (Looks like Evanston, IL, USA?)

    Jim MacKenzie, Jul 18, 2003
  9. Yes. It is Evanston.

    The chemicals are developers (haven't checked lately, but Dektol, D76,
    Microdol, Ilford Microphen, etc are possible) and fixers. Most are in
    those paper/foil packages, some in plastic bottles, a few possibly in cans.
    Leonard Evens, Jul 19, 2003
  10. cans.

    If the packages are sealed and the contents seem to still be loose powders
    and aren't all caked, the chemicals are very likely fine. I'd be interested
    in the powdered developers, but I'm in Canada. It might be less expensive
    to find a closer contact, but you can use me as Plan B.

    The chemicals in bottles are likely dead. The only liquid developers that
    will keep a decade or more PMK and Rodinal.

    Powdered fixers are sodium thiosulfate fixers and should be fine, although I
    don't use them - do give them away, don't discard them. Liquid fixers are
    probably dead if they are ten or more years old.

    Developers in cans are likely fine, too, as long as they weren't previously
    opened. I'm willing to listen about what you have here.

    Jim MacKenzie, Jul 21, 2003
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