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The following fact sheet was prepared by the ECAR Center staff. Once prepared, each ECAR Center fact sheet undergoes a review process with the applicable state environmental agency(ies). You can check on the status of the review process here. Please read the disclaimer on the status page. While we have tried to present a summary of the essential information on this topic, you should be aware that other items, such as local regulations, may apply to you.
What You Need to Know
Because waste fuel (gasoline or diesel) is flammable, it is classified as a hazardous waste if it is sent for disposal, and you need to manage it according to the hazardous waste rules. Waste fuel is not considered a hazardous waste if it is recycled or burned as a fuel. This fact sheet will outline the rules for you, and will provide some suggestions for how to handle and store waste fuel
Waste Classification. Waste fuel is contaminated gasoline or diesel that cannot be used in vehicles. Under most circumstances, waste fuel is a hazardous waste because it is ignitable. Hazardous wastes must be managed on-site and disposed of by following specific rules. See the ECAR Hazardous Waste fact sheet for more details about handling hazardous wastes.
If fuel is reusable, it should be stored in appropriate containers (properly grounded and closed on an impermeable surface) and clearly labeled "Reusable Gasoline" or "Reusable Diesel." Reusable fuel may be used in facility or employee vehicles.
Storage of Waste Fuel. Waste fuel must be stored in containers meeting DOT specifications performance criteria and must be in good condition. This means:
Waste fuel storage containers must be located within your property limits, at least 50 feet from your property boundaries. Do not accumulate waste fuel on-site for longer than 180 days.
Do not mix waste fuel with any other waste streams, without written permission from your waste hauler.
Labeling. You must follow specific rules for labeling hazardous waste storage containers. See the ECAR Hazardous Waste fact sheet for labeling instructions.
Spill Control. If a spill occurs, you must perform the following cleanup steps:
Record Keeping. You must follow specific rules for keeping records of hazardous waste accumulated on-site and shipped for disposal. See the ECAR Hazardous Waste fact sheet for record keeping instructions.
Fuel Filters. Fuel filters should be handled as hazardous waste and disposed of accordingly. Some landfills will take used fuel filters if they are punctured and drained for 24 hours. Check with your local landfill for information.
Links to the Regulations. Use the following links to view the regulations pertaining to waste fuel storage and management.
When an inspector comes to your facility, there are certain things he or she checks to see if you are in compliance with environmental regulations. It makes good sense for you to perform a "self-audit" and catch and correct problems before they result in penalties. Also, there are some compliance incentives associated with self-audits (see Audit Policy Page).
Use the following list to audit your waste fuel storage areas and management procedures.
Most regulations tell you what you have to do to be in compliance, but they don't explain how to do it. That's where "best management practices" come into play. BMPs are proven methods that help you to get into compliance and stay there.