Guide to Managing Used Oil

This resource has been developed by the Department of Solid Waste to provide businesses with guidance on how to properly manage wastes in accordance with federal, state and local laws.

Para leer esta página en español, vaya a Guía Para el Manejo de Aceite Usado.

Used Oil, Fuel and Transmission Filter Management

dirty oil pouring into a funnel
  • Puncture and drain filters into used oil or used fuel containers for 24 hours before storing them.
  • All fuel filters can be managed with used oil filters once they have been drained.
  • Keep drained filters in dedicated aboveground containers that do not leak.
  • Clearly label containers:
    • Used oil filters only = Used Oil Filters
    • Both used oil filters and fuel filters = Used Oil and Fuel Filters
    • Fuel filters only = Used Fuel Filters
  • Keep containers on concrete or another surface that oil cannot pass through.
  • Keep containers closed or otherwise protected from the weather.
  • Recycle through a used oil filter transporter and processor that is registered and approved by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. Call the FDEP Hazardous Waste Regulation Section at (850) 245-8707 for a list of approved used oil filter transporters and processors.
dirty oil in old milk jug sitting in pool of spilled oil

Used Oil Management

  • Label all containers including tanks, drums, dollies, buckets and pans with the words “Used Oil.”
  • Keep containers in good condition with no visible leaks, severe rusting, apparent structural defects or deterioration.
  • Close, cover or otherwise protect from the weather all containers and tanks stored outside.
  • For tanks and containers that are not double-walled, provide secondary containment* that has the capacity to hold 110% of the volume of the largest container or tank.
  • Recycle used oil through a licensed transporter that has an EPA ID number and is registered with the FDEP.
  • Keep receipts from your used oil hauler/disposal facility to show your used oil has been properly handled.
dirty oil draining for car

Used Oil Sorbent Management

De minimis quantities of oil sorbent material can be disposed at the Pinellas County Solid Waste facility with prior approval. Only sorbent used to clean up automotive fluid is accepted. Sorbent material must be either cellulose- or polypropylene-based. Clay and silica absorbents are prohibited. Call the Pinellas County Solid Waste facility (727) 464-7500 for a special waste profile.

Secondary Containment

Secondary containment units must meet or exceed the 110% secondary containment requirement.

  • Containers that are 55 gallons or less stored inside a structure on an oil-impermeable floor will meet the secondary containment requirement if leaks would remain in the structure.
  • For larger containers, the building structure can meet the secondary containment requirements if:
    • The container(s) is in good condition.
    • The container(s) is not stored near a doorway leading outside or on a surface that slopes toward an outside doorway or drain that leads to the environment.
    • The floor surface is in good condition and is oil-impermeable.
    • The walls connect to the floor.
    • There is enough room to collect the used oil if it spills.
  • Portable collection containers that have wheels, are typically emptied within 24 hours and are stored on an oil-impermeable surface inside a structure will meet the secondary containment requirement regardless of size.

Contact Us

For more information or to request a printed copy of this guide, contact the Pinellas County Small Quantity Generator Program at (727) 464-7500 or