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Frequently Asked Questions: Practice Waste Solutions

Practice Waste Solutions

Q: Some states say that storage of waste amalgam cannot exceed 1 year. Does that include my Amalgam Separator container?

A: Yes, Solmetex requires that you recycle your amalgam bucket annually.

Q: Can sharps go in my biohazard bucket?

A: Loose sharps are not permitted in the biohazard bucket. However, full sharps containers may be placed in the biohazard bucket.

Q: Why does California require a different filter for the fixer & developer waste?

A: Although developer does not meet the federal requirement for silver discharge limits, there are several counties in California that require fixer AND developer to be filtered prior to discharge. Water treatment facilities in parts of CA have trouble with their pH levels, therefore they require dental offices to treat their fixer and developer to help control pH levels being put into their facilities.

Q: What is the difference between an automatic and manual filter for fixer recovery?

A: Dental offices either have an automatic film processor, in which the processor is plumbed directly to a drain, or they have a manual processor that requires emptying of a tray or bottle manually after use.

Q: What kind of amalgam waste goes into the PWS Amalgam Buckets?

A: The PWS Amalgam Buckets are designed to handle contact and non-contact amalgam waste generated in dental practices. That includes vacuum trap filters, chair side traps, extracted teeth with amalgam, and spent amalgam capsules. Liquid mercury cannot be put in an amalgam bucket. If you have liquid mercury, and need help disposing of it, please call Solmetex directly at 800-216-5505.

Q: What kind of waste can be put into a scrap lead bucket?

A: Our lead bucket is designed to handle lead foil from x-ray films and autoclave indicators. We offer a separate product for recycling lead aprons. The Lead Apron Bucket (PWS-LB-A) is designed to hold 2 lead aprons. Lead aprons must be recycled separately from lead foils.

Q: How long can I store biohazard waste in my office?

A: Each state has its own storage limits for bio-hazard waste. 

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