Paint Recycling in Saskatchewan
The Saskatchewan paint recycling program managed by Product Care Recycling (Product Care) began in 2006 under the Government of Saskatchewan’s Waste Paint Management Regulations. The Regulations require anyone selling paint products in Saskatchewan to have a program to manage them at end-of-life. Accepted paint products include household paints, stains, varnishes, and empty paint cans. The program recycles over 300,000 litres annually, and since its inception, more than 3 million litres of paint have been recycled in Saskatchewan.
Product Care is a federally incorporated not-for-profit organization, providing recycling services across nine Canadian provinces and is funded by its members who include paint manufacturers, distributors and retailers.
How is the Program Funded?
The program is funded entirely by Environmental Handling Fees (EHFs) remitted by Product Care's industry members. EHFs are paid by Product Care members based on their unit sales and these fees are passed on to consumers when they purchase paint at a retailer. The EHF is neither a tax nor a deposit, but rather, a fee to cover the cost of responsible management of paint and paint containers at their end-of-life. No part of the eco-fee is remitted to the government and there is no government funding for the program.
A list of the EHFs is available on Product Care’s website at https://www.productcare.org/products/paint/saskatchewan/funding/.
Where Can Paint be Recycled?
Customers can take paint containers ranging in size from 100 ml to 23 litres, empty or containing paint, and aerosol paint containers to any one of the 72 SARCAN Recycling depots across the province. SARCAN also maintains shelves for sharing leftover paint if paint is of high enough quality, which is available for the public free of charge. For more information, see the PaintReuse section of Product Care’s website.
Daily limits for paint drop off apply: 25 one-gallon paint containers and up to 50 aerosol paint containers. Trade painters and other bulk paint customers may drop off more by appointment only.
Paint can also be returned to participating Rona and Lowes locations.
What Types of Paint are Included in the Program?
When returning leftover paint, be sure to keep products in their original containers with labels intact. Do not combine leftover paints with each other or with oils, solvents or other products. Make sure paint cans are properly sealed before transporting.
Paint products included in the program are:
Interior and exterior water-based (e.g. latex, acrylic) and oil-based (e.g. alkyd, enamel) consumer paint
Deck and floor coating (including elastomeric)
Varnish and urethane (single-component)
Concrete and masonry paint
Undercoats and primers (e.g. metal, wood etc.)
Marine paint (unless registered under Pest Control Products Act)
Wood finishing oil
Melamine, metal and anti-rust paint, stain and shellac
Swimming pool paint (single-component)
Stain blocking paint
Wood preservatives (unless registered under Pest Control Act)
Wood, masonry, driveway sealer or water repellant (non-tar or bitumen based)
Already empty paint containers
Aerosol paint of all types, including: automotive, craft and industrial
What Paint Products are Not Accepted?
Paints or wood preservatives that are registered as a pesticide under the pest control act (has P.C.P. Reg# on label) e.g. marine anti-fouling paint, should be treated as a pesticide
Craft paint (non-aerosol)
Automotive paint (non-aerosol)
Industrial paints & finishes (eg. baked-on, heat resistant etc.)
2-part or component paints containing catalyst or activator
Roof patch or repair
Tar-based or bitumen based product
Traffic or line marking paint
Quick drying paint
Paint thinners, mineral spirits or solvents
Colorants and Tints
Caulking compound, epoxies, glues or adhesives
Brushes, rags and rollers
Paint in glass containers
Unidentifiable or unlabelled containers
Improperly sealed paint containers
Paint containers with poor integrity (e.g. badly rusted cans) or leaking
Other household chemicals
What Happens to the Paint?
At its end-of-life, paint products are recycled into a number of different uses or products including: recycled into new paint, used as binder in cement, as alternative fuels.
What are Other Options for Leftover Paint?
The most cost-effective and energy efficient use for leftover paint is reuse. Leftover paint could be offered to friends or community groups, or take it to SARCAN. SARCAN makes useable paint brought to their depots available to the public free of charge.
Consumers may want to save extra paint to use for touch ups. To properly store paint, clean the rim of the can to ensure a proper seal. Pour 1/8" (3mm) of solvent on top of oil-based paint, or 1/8" (3mm) of water on top of latex paint to seal the surface, then secure the lid. Alternatively, stretch plastic wrap over the can opening, replace the lid securely, and store paint upside down. This will create an airtight seal to keep the paint fresh until you're ready to use it again. Always store paint away from heat sources at temperatures between 3 degrees and 35 degrees Celsius, and out of the reach of children.
For more information, visit https://www.productcare.org/products/paint/saskatchewan/ or call 306-880-1488.