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Car Enthusiasts Recycle Antifreeze, Oil Filters and Empty Lube Oil Containers

April 2, 2013

The Recycling Challenge:

What to do with Waste from Driveway DIY

Thousands of Ontario automotive businesses—from dealerships to gas stations to oil and lube franchises—collect their used oil containers and filters, as well as antifreeze, for processing through Stewardship Ontario’s special waste program. But what about those do-it-yourself (DIY) car enthusiasts who buy their own materials, and want to do the right thing with their leftovers? Between 10 and 15 per cent of all oil changes are done at home on the driveway, but you can’t put your containers and filters in the Blue Box. And it’s harmful to the environment to dispose of these products in the garbage—Environment Canada estimates that one litre of oil can contaminate up to two million litres of water.

The Sustainable Solution:

Make the Drop to Recycle Automotive Waste

Thanks to Stewardship Ontario’s Orange Drop Program, householders can drop off their leftover antifreeze, used oil filters and empty engine lubricating oil containers at close to 600 convenient locations across the province.

Retail Automotive Service Locations

Many retail automotive service locations participate in the Orange Drop Program, ranging from independent garages to brands like Jiffy Lube and Mr. Lube, as well as Active Tire Green + Ross and Canadian Tire. The network of automotive drop-offs includes urban, suburban and rural locations, and coverage currently extends from Windsor to Cornwall, and north to places like Timmins, Sudbury and Thunder Bay. It’s how we’re making automotive recycling even more accessible across Ontario.

What Happens to Your Leftover Automotive Products and Containers?

Oil FiterDIY drop-off sites collect your antifreeze in storage tanks, while containers and oil filters are stored in drums and totes, waiting for delivery to processing plants. It’s there that the plastic is shredded before being sold to manufacturers, who use the recycled raw materials (or feedstock) to make new items like plastic lumber, railway ties, curbstones and irrigation pipes. Oil filters? They’re crushed to extract the residual oil, which can be refined again as lubricants. The steel casings are sent to foundries to be reborn as recycled steel. Antifreeze is distilled to recover the glycol for reuse.

The Automotive Collaborators:

Stewardship Ontario’s Orange DropStewardship Ontario is a not-for-profit organization funded and governed by the industries that make and market the products and packaging materials recycled through the programs it manages–the Blue Box and Orange Drop.

Automotive Processors—There are more than 30 processors registered under Stewardship Ontario’s Automotive Incentive Program. For a complete listing please see the Stewardship Ontario Approved Transporters and Processors List

There are hundreds of automotive locations across the province of Ontario that take part in Stewardship Ontario’s Automotive DIY Program—from national chains to independent franchisors—including participating locations at:

Active Tire Green + Ross Tire and Auto Centre
Jiffy Lube
Mr. Lube
Canadian Tire

Connect with Stewardship Ontario

We are always interested in hearing about new ideas to improve recycling. Contact us to talk about your green innovations and forward-thinking recycling technologies.

Happens to
my Waste?

The Orange Drop program safely manages five materials to end-of-life, diverting harmful substances from landfill and waterways. Many of the materials collected through the Orange Drop Program, such as pressurized containers and batteries are reprocessed, refurbished or reused to make new products—easing the demand for energy and virgin resources.

Event Calendar

Elliot Lake – Public Works Yard
Public Works Yard 3 Timber Road Elliot Lake P5A 2T1 Canada
September 2, 2020 11am - 7pm

Algonquin Highlands – Maple Lake Landfill
Maple Lake Landfill McPhail Road K0M 1J1 Canada
June 6, 2020 1 - 5 p.m.

Algonquin Highlands – Dorset Transfer Station
Ridout Ward Transfer Station 21909 Ontario 35 Dorset P0A 1E0 Canada
June 20, 2020 1 - 5 p.m.

About Us

The five materials in the Orange Drop program are managed by Stewardship Ontario (batteries & pressurized containers) and Automotive Materials Stewardship (antifreeze, oil containers and oil filters).

Stewardship Ontario and Automotive Materials Stewardship are both not-for-profit organizations funded and governed by the industries that are the brand owners, first importers or franchisors of the products and packaging materials managed under our recycling programs.

At Orange Drop, we strive to find new ways to turn today’s waste into tomorrow’s consumer products.


Wind up of the Municipal Hazardous or Special Waste (MHSW) Program
Blog Post

October 29, 2019 - On April 12, 2018, the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change issued direction to Stewardship Ontario to wind up the Municipal Hazardous or Special Waste (MHSW) Program by December 31, 2020. Upon wind up, materials collected under the MHSW Program will be managed according to an individual producer responsibility (IPR) framework under the Resource Recovery and Circular Economy Act, 2016. On December 11, 2018, the Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) amended the timelines for the wind up of single-use batteries, stating the waste diversion program for single-use batteries would cease operation on June 30, 2020 to allow for coordination with waste electrical and electronic equipment. On July 2, 2019, Stewardship Ontario received further direction from the MECP regarding the wind up of the MHSW Program. The new direction letter amendments are summarized below: The program to manage all designated materials except single-use batteries will now cease operation on June 30, 2021 instead of December 31, 2020. The program to manage single-use batteries will continue to cease operation on June 30, 2020. Stewardship Ontario is to develop a proposal to return surplus funds to Ontario consumers of MHSM in its proposed Wind Up Plan: For MHSM categories whose recovery is managed by Stewardship Ontario, the plan will set out rules governing a fee elimination during the wind up period; For MHSM categories that are managed through industry stewardship p

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