When people plan to use sparklers, they are often consumed by the act of lighting and enjoying them. It doesn’t matter if it’s a wedding or the 4th of July, they captivate our attention like few other items can. However, safely disposing of sparklers is just as important; and one may even argue that it’s the most important factor.
Sadly, most people take for granted just how dangerous a sparkler can be after its finished performing. Unfortunately, there can still be residual powder left on the stick that failed to ignite. As a result, the high temperatures at which a sparkler performs can leave enough hot material to cause them to reignite. Additionally, items that are expired or damaged can also be problematic to dispose of properly. To help answer your questions, I’ve put together this guide on how to safely dispose of sparklers in any situation. Whether they’re used or expired, I cover it all. Enjoy.
Safely Disposing of Used Sparklers
The most important time for safely disposing of sparklers is immediately after their use. As I mentioned, they can reignite without warning under the right circumstances. It’s extremely rare, but it can happen. So, taking the appropriate steps is vital if you want to have a safe experience. Here are four different ways dispose of used sparklers safely. Also, always make sure to have a fire extinguisher on hand just in case.
Douse Them with Water
Water is the ultimate way to put out any fire, and it is one of the easiest items to obtain. To ensure they are completely extinguished, just throw them into a bucket of water after the performance. This method works particularly well with medium-sized sparklers because they fit easily into the bucket. After they’ve been submerged for about 30 seconds, they become completely inert and can be thrown away. This is one of the most surefire ways to safely discard them after use.
Smother Them in Sand
Besides getting things wet, smothering the oxygen source is another great option. One simple way to achieve this is to bury the sticks in a bucket of sand. Sand is nice because it will allow you to slide each metal wire in easily. Meanwhile, the sand eliminates any oxygen from reaching potentially unused powder. Furthermore, the sand acts like a heat sink to dissipate heat from the steel wire quickly. After a few minutes, your used sparklers are safe to handle and dispose of as you see fit.
Leave Them on Concrete
Fortunately, time can also be a solution to making things safer. If you place your used sparklers in an area that is non-combustible, the risk diminishes after just a few short minutes. One of the easiest places to choose is an open concrete area. Concrete can endure very high temperatures, so if they start back up it won’t be an issue. After a few minutes, you can collect them and go about properly disposing of your sparklers.
Place Them in a Steel Bin
Similar to placing them on concrete, a steel bin is another great container for your refuse. The steel walls will contain any potential flare-ups and keep your risk to a minimum. However, I always suggest adding a little water to be on the safe side. Again, it only takes a few minutes before they’re safe and you can empty the steel bin into the trash.
Safely Disposing of Expired Sparklers
Of course, sometimes you run into a situation where you have old or damaged product on your hands. Whether they are leftover wedding sparklers or were intended for another occasion, safely discarding them can seem like a challenge. Fortunately, there are a few simple methods that will make them ready to go in the garbage bin. Here are my favorite methods.
Burn Them in a Fire Pit
You may not want to hold them in your hand, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a great show! Consider tossing your useless inventory into a fire pit for a cool effect while doing some spring cleaning. This is one of the most beneficial ways to dispose of sparklers for that very purpose. However, make sure to only do a few at a time or the show might get out of control in a hurry. Additionally, you’ll need to scoop out the fire pit and discard the reaming metal wire handles. Overall, it’s a small price to pay for such a cool and dazzling effect!
Submerge Them in Water
One cool trick to completely render your old sparklers useless is to submerge them in water. Though sparklers can technically burn underwater, they must be going already before they are submerged. After a few minutes of soaking, most of the chemicals breakdown and dissipate into the water. Even if you dry them out completely, they will not be easy to light. This eliminates their volatility so they are safe to toss into your regular garbage can.
Scrape Off the Powder
Many people decide that scarping off the powder from the wire handles is a good way to render them inert. Though this is true on paper, it can bring some new risks you may not have considered. First, the powder is incredibly unstable once removed from the sticks. The slightest spark can set it off, so extreme caution must be used. Additionally, you still need to destroy the powder before you tossing it out. So, you‘ll need to burn it or soak it in water before it’s discarded. Overall, just skipping this step and going directly with water or a fire pit makes the most sense.
Use Them at an Event or Party
Some situations aren’t about the product being expired; it’s about freeing up space. Most people already know how to properly store sparklers, so the chances of them expiring are actually quite slim. If you find yourself in this situation, consider finding another create us for them! Birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, and backyard parties all make excellent scenarios for their use. If you just get a little creative, disposing of sparklers can be a fun and beneficial addition to your celebration.
Which Is the Best Method for Safely Disposing of Sparklers?
Overall, the safest way to dispose of sparklers is soaking them in water. It is a foolproof way to break things down on a chemical level. However, the joy and excitement you receive from burning them in a fire pit may tip the scales for many people. Either way, you need to make sure you call your local sanitation company or look at their list of prohibited items before putting anything in the trash. The last thing you want is an angry company because you threw out something you shouldn’t! However, as long as you’ve made them safe, disposing of sparklers is usually just a matter of throwing them in the trash can.