Bulging paint can


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Old 06-01-14, 03:05 PM
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Bulging paint can

I didn't think this could happen at room temperature but it can. I had a small paint can that was either 25 or 40 years old with a bulging lid. I took it


on the terrace and opened the lid with my longest screwdriver and it popped up with a loud pop. I poured the solvent down an outdoor drain followed by two buckets of water and I threw the solidified paint in the trash. I checked my other paint cans and found a gallon can of commercial epoxy enamel (the larger part of a two part epoxy paint) that had a bulging lid. I took it outside where people in my building put large items that they're throwing away, then I went back upstairs to think about what to do. I found the following information from an internet document titled Understanding Paint, what can go wrong?
"Gassing in the can: This is usually associated with paints containing large amounts of zinc metal and aluminium flake pigments. The first sign of gassing is a bulging lid and immediate action is needed. If a can of paint has a bulging lid it should be covered with a denim type rag (these rags are useful for something). A 3-inch nail (75mm) should then be punched through the rag to make a hole in the lid and release the pressure. Tape the hole with masking tape and return to the place of purchase."
Sound good? I have goggles and I can probably find some old cloth but I'll have to choose between a new 2-1/2" nail and a bent 4" nail unless I make a trip to Home Depot for a 3 inch nail. I guess I'll try to straighten the 4" nail.

I'm frightened. Hold me.

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I wonder if hammering the nail in the lid could make paint shoot out of the edges of the lid. My original idea was to put a screwdriver through a piece of cardboard that could act as a shield and pry off the lid.
 
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Old 06-01-14, 03:20 PM
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I poured the solvent down an outdoor drain followed by two buckets of water
I wouldn't advertise that fact.

Put a towel or rag over it and put in ANY small hole to relieve the pressure. It doesn't have to be anything special.
 
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Old 06-01-14, 03:47 PM
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Now days paint only stores at best for a year or two. I throw them out after a year. Not worth using spoiled paint and expect a good job.
 
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Old 06-01-14, 04:29 PM
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I sharpened the point and straightened the nail a little and it went well. Just a slight fizz and bubbling from the hole when I removed the nail. I'll let the super of the building decide what to do with the paint. I don't want to bother with the cat liter thing unless he refuses to take full cans.
 
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Old 06-01-14, 08:29 PM
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I wouldn't advertise that fact.
I'm pretty sure it was water based so I think it's OK. I also got rid of a spray paint can that was leaking from the bottom and a bunch of other paint. But I still haven't found my one year old primer that I was looking for, which started all of this.
 
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Old 06-02-14, 04:11 AM
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It's still not a good idea and might be illegal to pour the liquid down the drain!! it doesn't matter what base the paint is - none of it is intended for the sewage system!

A lot of towns have places to bring paints and such for disposal. Locally they advertise on the news about once a year where to take paints and other household chemicals for free disposal.
 
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Old 06-02-14, 04:42 AM
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A lot of towns have places to bring paints and such for disposal. Locally they advertise on the news about once a year where to take paints and other household chemicals for free disposal.
One of my pet peeves. Ours is county wide and they have one or two days a year to bring in any chemicals or tires. So anyone with say 1 can of whatever, that can't be thrown in the garbage is suppose to hold this stuff (for maybe a year or more) and then find the time (and be made aware) and spend the gas and travel perhaps 50 miles or more just to be environmentally responsible.

It don't happen! For instance, I'm working on one of my engines and I have a few ounces of gasoline that can't be used. So do I hold this stuff (and dangerous to boot) for a year or so? No! I go to curb side and dump it. Is that good? NO, But lets face it what do most people do?

A better and more responsible system would be a once per month or possibly quarterly special curbside pick up by each municipality for such items. Then let the town bring it to a central depot drop off point.

I see plenty of other times when the town runs their trucks up and down the neighborhoods looking for debris or doing road inspection. That would be a good time.

Although in our town the dried paint (cat litter absorbed) will do pick-up with weekly garbage.

OK, my rant is done. You may now go back to you regularly scheduled program.
 
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Old 06-03-14, 04:48 PM
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Outside drains or storm drains are NOT treated. Only indoor drains (toilet, kitchen, etc) get treated by your local water/utility company. There's no need to treat rain water, since it's already clean.
What you did was the equivalent of just pouring the paint out on your lawn.
 
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Old 06-07-14, 09:33 PM
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Outside drains or storm drains are NOT treated.
According to New York City’s Wastewater Treatment System, 70% are.
"In most areas of the City, sanitary and industrial wastewater, rainwater and street runoff are collected in the same sewers and then conveyed together to the City’s treatment plants. This is known as a combined sewer system...Approximately 70 percent of the City sewers are combined."
 
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Old 06-08-14, 03:49 AM
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Years ago it was SOP to hook the storm drains up to the sewer. While that practice was discontinued a long time ago there are a lot of older homes that are still connected. Didn't realize it was as high as 70%
 
 

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