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Removing Water-Based Paint Solids from Rinse Water

27 thoughts on “Removing Water-Based Paint Solids from Rinse Water”

    • Hi Lisa – Thanks for asking. This process really does remain the best and most effective approach and it has held up quite well over the years. So definitely feel free to rely on it. And if you have any other questions, just ask!

      Reply
          • Hello Chakara,
            Tap water typically has microbes that do not get filtered out with this process. These can grow in the waste water, cause odor and make the filtered waste water unpleasant to use and may spoil paint mixtures more quickly. For best results, it is recommended to use fresh water for painting.
            Thanks!

  1. I’ve called most every garden center in California that I can drive to, they say that they can’t carry hydrogenated lime or aluminum sulfate because FDA forbids it. What other options will work. I don’t want to ruin my pipes or septic. Thank you!

    Reply
    • Hello Susan,
      great that you are treating your painting water as well! Yes, this can be done in larger batches and you would simply have to adjust the amounts of lime powder and aluminum sulfate accordingly.

      Best,
      mirjam

      Reply
  2. The water that is filtered into the pail seems rather murky. Can it be refiltered?
    I couldn’t find the larger filters where I live, so I used smaller filters arranged to cover the funnel as much as possible.

    The other solution I had was to cut a hole in the lid of the pail to set the funnel in. It works quite well and I don’t need a huge funnel. I’m using a 9 inch funnel.

    Reply
    • Hello Sharon,
      Yes, you can attempt to refilter. You could use the chemicals again or just try to pass through the coffee filter and see if you catch more solids. It is possible since you are not using a single filter that some material is passing around the smaller filters. Larger filters are available online from retailers such as Amazon.
      Best,
      Christian

      Reply
    • Hello Nancy,
      It’s possible to mix the material and use it over time, but the lime will settle and require very vigorous remixing so we do not recommend it. Also, these would not be good to have around in non-child-proof containers if this is a family household.
      Best,
      Christian

      Reply
  3. Hi!

    Can you add too much of either? Tried this once and it worked like a charm. The next time I wasn’t getting floculation, but I did have some foaming. Waited a few minutes and added more of each and then nothing….

    Hoping you can help!
    Thanks,
    Kate

    Reply
    • Hi Kate,
      Not sure what may have happened there. Assuming everything was added in the correct order, the #1 solution should flocculate the solids and then the #2 solution should bring it back to a more neutral PH for disposal. Please let us know if you continue to have issues. Give us a call at 800-959-6543 and ask for technical support.
      Thanks,
      Greg

      Reply
  4. Could you explain the purpose of flocculating the solids?
    Surely they disperse again a bit when you move the water simply through agitation?
    Would simply pouring the water through the filter, without using the chemicals, not achieve the same result?
    Thank you,
    Carol

    Reply
    • Hello CP,
      Flocculating the solids is an important step to this process. It renders the solids into clumpy masses that are too large to stay in solution. They do not reenter the mixture after they have been flocculated. The pigments and acrylic solids need to be flocked together so they get caught in the filter. Otherwise they will flow through as colored water. Some of the color may get captured, but it is markedly less effective.
      Thanks!
      Greg

      Reply
    • Hi Georgia,
      What remains is a dried clump of pigment and acrylic solids. We recommend discarding this material after separating it from the water, as it is difficult to say what it might be used for and if it would be a stable addition to any sort of home-made art material. This product should be fine to add to your solid waste stream.
      We hope all is well in the studio!
      Greg

      Reply

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