Stanford University

Lab Cleanout

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Last updated: December 14, 2023


Lab Cleanout Cost Recovery Policy (effective 9.1.2023)

Whenever laboratories close, move, or choose to clean out a substantial amount of material, the EH&S Chemical Waste Program (CWP) can perform a laboratory waste cleanout. This service includes management for unwanted reagents in good condition, samples and waste mixtures.

  • Biohazardous waste, radioactive waste, empty containers, lab equipment, and lab supplies are not part of the lab cleanout
  • Lab personnel are responsible for labeling their waste with a hazardous waste label or surplus sticker, before the chemicals can be picked up
  • Laboratories must have at least 100 chemicals to be considered for a cleanout.
  • Reagent chemicals in non-leaking and intact containers with an original manufacturer’s label are considered surplus chemicals (as opposed to hazardous waste) and may be candidates for our chemical redistribution program.
  • Samples must be completely identified with a Hazardous Waste Tag. They may be grouped if compatible and similar composition.
  • Waste Mixtures must also be fully labelled.
  • Materials left behind by former occupants of the space are managed as part of the lab cleanout.
  • CWP cannot accept unknown materials. If you have materials that are unlabeled or otherwise unknown, you must make all reasonable efforts to identify them. If you still cannot identify a material, you may request an unknown material analysis.
  • Ensure proper segregation of chemicals.
  • Do not combine incompatible materials in boxes or trays.
  • You must provide a description of all materials to be removed before the cleanout. Use the online form. Include the following:
    • Total number of chemical containers
    • General description of the contents of each container (e.g., assorted buffers, non-halogenated solvents, toxic solids, flammable liquids, acids, or mercury containing materials)
    • General condition of the containers
    • Whether any containers are stored in a freezer

The cleanout will then be scheduled, and we will notify the requesting party.

Costs will be recovered from non-research operations, such as housing, operations and maintenance (O&M), utilities, and facilities projects. A PTA (account number) and the name of an authorized approver on the account are required. To schedule a cleanout for non-research operations, click here and click on “Request this service”.

EH&S Lab Cleanout Cost Recovery Policy

Definition: EH&S provides “Lab Cleanout” service defined as removal, packaging and disposal of unneeded chemicals and chemical wastes.

EH&S manages Lab Cleanouts under three scenarios and cost models.

  • Construction/Demolition Project
    • The project is responsible for all costs.
  • Cleanout initiated by PI or knowledgeable representative such as Lab Manager, Graduate Student or Postdoctoral Fellow, and is available to answer questions.
    • EH&S covers the costs.
  • The Department or School initiated the cleanout due to faculty member leaving or is not available. Therefore ownership of the material has transferred to the School or Department.
    • EH&S shares costs with the Department.

EH&S groups Lab Cleanouts into three categories:

Small: Less than 300 items; Department share $2,500
Medium: 300 to 500 Items; Department share $5,000
Large: Over 500 Items; Department share $10,000

EH&S intends to work with University Safety Partners on those cleanouts where the faculty member is not available.

For Questions, please contact:
Craig Barney, Associate Director, Environmental Protection Programs
Email:; phone (650) 444-6525

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