Common hazardous ingredients
Acetates (ethyl, amyl, butyl), acetone, butadiene methyl styrene latex, cyanoacrylate, epoxy resins, formaldehyde, hexane, methly ethyl ketone, methyl isobutyl ketone, methylene chloride, petroleum naphtha phthalates, phenol, polyamide resin, polyvinyl alcohol, toluene (toluol), trichloroethane, xylene (xylol).
Solvent-based products – including rubber cement, epoxy, instant glues, model glues and plastic adhesives – are the most hazardous type and can be recognized by the words “flammable,” combustible” or “contains petroleum distillates” on the label.
May be extremely flammable or explosive, may be irritating to skin and lungs or may be corrosive and cause burns to skin and eyes. Narcotic, possibly fatal when inhaled in high concentrations. Air pollutant. Methylene chloride, common in some adhesives/glues is a suspected human carcinogen.
- For adhesives or glues containing solvents, use a non-aerosol application if possible.
- Buy a minimum amount, follow label directions exactly and use in a well-ventilated area, away from any sources of ignition.
- Avoid wearing soft contacts, as the solvent can be absorbed and trapped next to the eyes.
Keep container lids tightly closed when not in use and store in a secure area that is locked or out of reach of children and away from sources of heat or flames.
Best: Use up or give away. Dispose of empty container in the garbage.
Second best: Uncap instant, white or yellow glue and allow it to harden in its container. Dispose of solid glue and container in the garbage.
Third best: Take to a hazardous waste facility or collection event.
White glue, glue sticks and yellow glue are the least toxic adhesives currently available.
- For gluing wood, china, paper and other porous materials, use white or yellow carpenter’s glues.
- For gluing paper, use paste or a glue stick instead of rubber cement.
- For pasting up artwork for publication, use a waxer with paraffin.
- For mounting photos, use dry mounting tissues.