Automotive Tips

Recycling Used Antifreeze

Technician_12Used antifreeze is a hazardous waste material. In this blog post, we discuss antifreeze recycling and how our Jiffy Lube locations handle this toxic substance.

A Brief History

Antifreeze is the common term for a chemical compound called ethylene glycol. First used for automobiles in 1926, the substance quickly replaced its predecessor, water. It has a higher boiling point, lower freezing point, and does not harm the engine in below-freezing temperatures.

For many decades, repair shops and do-it-yourselfers would dump used antifreeze down their driveways or into storm drains. These practices, however, were shown to have a direct and negative effect on fresh water quality and marine life. They also posed a threat any animal or human who swallowed the fluid.

It is now illegal to dump antifreeze down drains, into toilets, or discharge it into a sewer. In addition, California instituted a law in 2005 that required a bittering agent to be added to all antifreeze sold in the state so animals or humans would be less likely to ingest it.

Current Antifreeze Recycling Practices

There are multiple household hazardous waste collection centers across Southern California that will accept used antifreeze. In addition, mobile collection services can travel to requested locations to accept used antifreeze.

The Future of Antifreeze Recycling

Some vehicle maintenance locations have onsite antifreeze recycling equipment. This recycling machine “washes” used antifreeze by cleansing it with additives. The end result is a fresh batch of antifreeze that can be reused for most engines.

Also, the automotive industry is moving toward the use of glycerol as antifreeze. Like ethylene glycol, glycerol has a higher boiling point and lower freezing point than water, but it is non-toxic as well.

Jiffy Lube of Southern California’s Recycling Efforts

In these environmentally conscious times, dumping old antifreeze can land you in big trouble. As a result of this concern, many customers ask us: “How do you recycle used antifreeze?”

Our local shops are committed to recycling antifreeze through proper channels as part of our Cooling System Service. We also recycle transmission fluid and used oil. In fact, our stores have recycled more than 35 million quarts of oil since 2011 as part of our Signature Service® Oil Change.

Recycling is just one way your local Jiffy Lube® works to help your community. When you bring your vehicle to us for any one of our preventive maintenance services, you can be assured that you are helping protect your safety, your investment in your vehicle, and your environment as well.


*Not all locations provide the services discussed in this article. Please visit to find out if your location offers the services you want. From our Location Page, click on your preferred shop to find the services it offers, available coupons, and local specials.

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