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Household Hazardous Materials (HHMs) & Businesses

Hazardous waste regulations vary depending on the type and amount of hazardous waste which is being generated by the business. Similarly, retailers selling household hazardous material (HHM) products to the public also have certain requirements to follow. The following provides an overview.

If you sell HHMs, go to the HHM Retailer Permits page.

If you use HHMs in your business:
Most businesses and households use products that contain hazardous materials. For example, a business that uses any of the following materials probably creates hazardous wastes:

  • Dyes, paints, thinners, solvents or cleaning fluids
  • Materials that burn or itch on contact with skin
  • Materials that dissolve metal, wood, paper or clothing
  • Pesticides
  • Products with a warning label such as flammable, caustic, danger, hazardous or poison

Hazardous wastes generated by businesses require special handling. It is illegal to place hazardous waste in a dumpster, pour down drains or evaporate into the air and hazardous waste can’t be taken to a landfill or transfer station. Every business must comply with regulations, no matter how little hazardous waste is generated. The amount of waste a business produces or stores determines which federal regulations apply.

Business that generate less than 220 pounds of hazardous waste or less than 2.2 pounds of acute hazardous waste per month or less than 220 pounds of hazardous spill residue per month may be classified as a very small quantity generator (VSQG). Businesses classified as a VSQG are eligible to manage disposal of hazardous waste through the local Regional Collection Center.

Businesses who wish to use the RCC in their area should contact the facility directly for information on authorization to use the program and documentation of generator status: Iowa RCC Contact Information

Businesses that produce larger amounts of hazardous waste must comply with federal regulations and dispose of unwanted hazardous waste through a licensed hazardous waste company.