Used Oil Information
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The following questions and guidance are taken from the Consolidated Screening Checklist for Automotive Repair Facilities Guidebook

A √ next to a response in the guide indicates that is the preferred response in terms of environmental compliance. If you select a response without a √, you may still be in compliance; however, you should verify that you are in compliance by contacting the appropriate federal or state regulatory agency and discussing your activity with them.


When performing oil changes, auto repair shops should always recycle or reclaim the used oil. Used oils are regulated under the Used Oil Standards, and are typically not classified as hazardous wastes under the federal program. However, some states may have stricter management and disposal requirements. Contact your state regulatory agency to determine the used oil disposal requirements. Facilities should maintain all records on their used oil storage and recycling activities. Are used oil containers/tanks and associated piping leak free and labeled “used oil?”

Used oil must be stored in leak free containers and be labeled with the words used oil.  No special labels are necessary, provided that the words used oil are visible at all times. Spray painting, crayon, or handwritten (preferably not in pencil) labels are okay. Used motor oil may be mixed with other used oils (hydraulic oils, transmission fluids, brake fluids) and stored in the same container.Some facilities have pipes that run from the inside of the shop to an to an outside tank or container. Technicians can pour the oil into a funnel or small bucket which is attached to the piping, and the oil goes directly to the tank. In this case, label the funnel/bucket and piping with the words used oil.

Yes–Used oil is in a leak free container(s) labeled with the words used oil.  √

No–Used oil is not in a leak free container (s) and/or is not labeled used oil.N/A–Facility does not generate used oil.

Does the facility prevent the mixing of used oil with hazardous waste?

A facility should not mix hazardous waste fluids, such as used solvent, gasoline, or other hazardous substances, with used oil, or the entire volume may be classified as hazardous waste. For example, mixing a listed hazardous waste with used oil will result in the used oil becoming a hazardous waste One may mix used motor oil with other used oils (e.g., transmission fluid or brake fluid) and store them in the same container/tank.

Yes–Facility prevents the mixing of used oil with hazardous waste.  √

N/A–Facility does not generate used oil.

How does the facility manage/dispose of its used oil?

Used oil can be recycled or burned for energy recovery so long as no other wastes are mixed with the oil. Recycling is environmentally protective and energy recovery reduces heating costs during the winter.Under Used Oil Management Standards, generators can burn used oil as long as:

Sent off-site for recycling–Facility has a regular hauler who takes the used oil to a recycling facility.  √

Burned in an on-site space heater–Facility burns its used oil in an on-site heater with maximum heating capacity of 0.5 million BTUs used to heat the facility or heat hot water. Note: There may be Clean Air Act (CAA) requirements that apply when burning used oil. Contact the state or local air pollution control agency for more information.  √

Burned off-site–Facility has a hauler or takes its own oil to a used oil burner.  √

Other–Facility does not use any of the methods described above. Note: Used oil should not be disposed of in sewers, drains, dumpsters, on the ground, or used as dust suppressants.

N/A–Facility does not generate used oil.If the facility transports more than 55 gallons of used oil off-site at one time, (1) does it have an EPA ID number, and (2) is it licensed as a used oil transporter?If the facility transports more than 55 gallons of used oil offsite to an approved used oil collection center, it is required to (1) have an EPA ID number and (2) be licensed as a used oil transporter.

Yes–Facility has an EPA ID number and is licensed as a used oil transporter.  √

No–Facility does not have an EPA ID number, or is not licensed as a used oil transporter.

N/A–Facility does not transport more than 55 gallons of used oil off-site at one time.

 Source: U.S. EPA Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, EPA 305-B-03-004, October 2003.

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