[Histonet] Re: recycled alcohol

Johnson, Teri TJJ <@t> Stowers-Institute.org
Sat Dec 11 14:13:46 CST 2004

Regardless of brand of commercial recycler, once there is xylene in your alcohol, you can no longer recycle it as alcohol.  You could, however, recycle it as xylene, although most of it would end up in the waste cut since there is only a slight amount of xylene contamination.  It would be better to dispose of it.
Waste segregation is critical for proper alcohol recycling.  Any alcohol that has xylene carryover (flushes from the processor and the alcohols immediately post-xylene for deparaffinization) should be disposed of and not put through the recycler.  You will never get the xylene out of the alcohol using an alcohol run.
In smaller labs where there are only a few lab personnel, it's much easier to ensure proper waste segregation.  In larger labs, with more hands in the pie, quite often someone dumps the bucket into the wrong container.
Good luck!
Teri Johnson
Managing Director, Histology Facility
Stowers Institute for Medical Research

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