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How to Properly Dispose of Motor Oil

To keep your vehicle and machines up and running, you need to maintain it well. One of the most common ways to do this is by using motor oil or lubricating oil. Your regular oil change is more than just a chore, it’s this regular maintenance that prevents parts from grinding, seizing and damaging the internal mechanisms.

But when it’s time for disposal, what should you do with the used engine oil? Australia generates as much as 250 million litres of used oil every year and it’s vital to dispose of this properly to avoid environmental damage, or worse, hefty fines for illegal dumping.

Luckily, there are a few different ways to properly dispose of motor oil and other engine oils. Thanks in part to local councils and waste management centres, it’s now easier than ever to responsibly dispose of waste oil to be recycled and re-refined for other uses.

In this guide, we’ll cover some of the reasons why you should recycle used motor oil, what to do with your used oil after a change, what can happen if you don’t dispose of your oil properly and your options for how to correctly dispose of used oil in Australia.

Why You Should Recycle Used Motor Oil

Recycling used motor oil is vital for environmental sustainability. It’s not just about avoiding the damage to your home’s plumbing or limiting a potential fire hazard. Used motor oil is classified as a hazardous waste that poses significant risks if not disposed of properly. Pouring it down storm drains can contaminate nearby water sources, impact wildlife and pollute land.

Used motor oil can be repurposed into products like lubricating oil, hydraulic oil, or even as industrial burner fuel. Every single automotive oil change generates oil that can be recycled, reducing the need for new lubricating oil production. Local used oil facilities, council facilities, and oil collectors play a crucial role in this process.

Is It Illegal To Dump Motor Oil?

Yes, improper disposal of used motor oil, such as dumping it in landfill sites or down the drain, is illegal due to its environmental impact. Instead, participate in chemical clean-out programs or take it to local transfer stations for responsible disposal.

Recycling used oils through oil recycling programs is not only a legal requirement but also contributes to the conservation of a valuable resource. Remember, an empty oil container from your oil change should be taken to a local council or household chemical clean up for proper disposal, ensuring the sustainability of our environment.

How to Properly Dispose of Motor Oil

Proper Storage of Used Motor Oil: A Crucial Step Before Recycling

Storing used motor oil correctly is essential before you dispose of it or take it to a recycling facility. Use a well-sealed, leak-proof container, free from other household products. Be sure to never mix waste oils, solvents or other hazardous household products together as recycling facilities will not be able to accept used motor oil that’s been contaminated.

The best choice is often the original oil container, but a clean, sturdy metal or plastic bottle will work too. Remember to let the oil cool before pouring it into the container. Properly stored used oil is more than just waste; it’s a valuable resource waiting to be tapped. When managed right, it can find a new life, showing just how crucial responsible recycling really is.

And remember, places like your local used oil facility are the unsung heroes in this story, turning what was once old into something new again.

Where to Bring Motor Oil for Disposal?

Used motor oil requires specific disposal methods due to its classification as hazardous waste. Thankfully, several recycling facilities and dedicated hazardous waste collection sites are equipped to handle motor oil. It’s important to search for these facilities in advance to understand their motor oil disposal options. Many auto parts stores and service centres also accept motor oil for recycling.

Additionally, some oil facilities are equipped to process oil filters and used oily rags along with the motor oil. As a recyclable and recoverable resource, used motor oil often finds new life in applications like industrial burners, as hydraulic oil, or as an additive in various products.


Australia produces millions of used motor oil. The problem is, it’s not very simple to dispose of these used products as they pose detrimental effects to the environment. Practise proper disposal of motor oil to lessen this problem in your local neighbourhood and environment. Even if it takes more effort to dispose of used motor oil, let’s all do our part to avoid any contaminations to resources. Remember this, One litre of oil can contaminate one million litres of water.”


Work with Paul’s Rubbish Removal for your next disposal!

We understand that disposing of used engine oil and motor oil from your home can be unpleasant and challenging. That’s where we come in. At Paul’s Rubbish Removal, we’re equipped to handle any unwanted waste, including oil. We’ll ensure that your motor oil is taken to appropriate recycling facilities, helping prevent pollution. Don’t hesitate to work with us for a hassle-free disposal experience. Feel free to contact us anytime

We provide Household Rubbish Removals, Commercial Rubbish Removals, Same-Day Rubbish Removals and Fast Kerbside Pick Ups for more immediate disposal of your rubbish. We have other rubbish removal services as well. Check us out!

The best way to reach us is by calling us on 0407 125 125. You can also send us your enquiries or book a rubbish removal job here.

Sarah Ann

Sarah Ann

Sarah Ann is a Digital Content Writer for Paul's Rubbish Removal. Sarah is a huge advocate for recycling, environmental sustainability, health and well-being and has a genuine love for all sea animals. Keep up with Sarah by following Paul's Rubbish Removal blog!

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