Skip to Content

Can You Throw Away Unused Matches? (And in the Toilet?)

Can You Throw Away Unused Matches? (And in the Toilet?)

More often than not, people who use matches regularly almost always have more than they need at any particular time.

The question is, how do you dispose of unused matches safely? The most important consideration to make is the condition of the unused matches you’re tossing away.

As a rule of thumb, fire safety guidelines recommend that any unused matches be dipped in water before disposing of. That way, you reduce the chances of the matches igniting by accident.

Is It Okay To Throw Away Unused Matches?

Yes. It’s okay to throw away unused matches as long as you ensure you take the necessary precautions before getting rid of them. If you must throw away your unused matches, make sure they’re in a condition where they won’t ignite easily.

When disposing of unused matches, it’s important to remember that they are flammable. Their ultimate purpose is to ignite and burn.

If you toss out unused matches while they are still dry, they have a much higher likelihood of igniting and causing an accidental fire. There are numerous reports of instances where improperly disposed of matches have been the cause of a fire and caused extensive damage.

Can You Throw Matches in the Garbage?

Yes, you can throw matches in the garbage, but it’s essential to dispose of them properly. Before tossing them into the garbage, a quick way to ensure they don’t ignite is to soak them in water.

That way, the flammable tip will start falling off, and the matchsticks are less likely to burn easily.

Is It Alright to Discard Unused Matches?

Yes, discarding unused matches is not a crime, nor is it morally wrong. However, there need to be some precautions.

There are a couple of reasons you need to take precautions; for example, matches are flammable. Therefore, disposing of them if you have not used them might be a bit risky.

There have been reports of people having their garbage catch fire, especially when they disposed of their unused matches without precaution. You obviously don’t want the same thing to happen to you, so it’s better to take precautions.

Can You Throw Matches in the Toilet?

No, you should never throw your matches down the toilet since anything safe to go down the toilet breaks down quickly. Additionally, matches flushed down the toilet could potentially cause a backflow, leading to the sticking of other sanitary things, causing blockages.

Most people have always believed that they can do just anything in the toilet, but this is not true. You are misled for thinking you can put some stuff, whether civic or septic tank systems.

Matches have a lengthy period as far as getting rotten and will eventually accumulate with other sanitary items when cleaning up the systems.

How To Safely Dispose of Unused Matches?

If you have gathered a lot of unused matches, don’t know what to do with them, and probably don’t want to dispose of them inappropriately, just deep the matches into the water and dispose of them in your garbage.

Can Matches Expire?

Matches do not have an exploration date, but like most things, matches have a window period that is not indefinite if appropriately kept; in a container that won’t allow water in.

In other words, this kind of storage can prolong matches’ life to about 24 to 36 months. Match sticks that remain uncovered or will have a very short duration due to too much exposure. Please also note that the time threshold they’ll last depends on the room temperature within your area and how you reserve them.

Safety matches kept appropriately (covered) will last longer but may lose their touch after about 36 months. However, stormproof matches are more sustainable and could last longer than 36 months, depending on preserving them.

Can You Recycle Matches?

Yes, you can recycle matches; though tiny, they aren’t strong enough to damage the recycling machine. At the same time, it’s essential to note that the wooden matches might contaminate some items in the recycling machine. That means you may need a unique recycling method to prevent this.

Recycling companies usually have restrictions on the type of wood they would recycle. For instance, these companies don’t allow wood treated with chemicals, while painted wood can also be rejected.

That’s not all; recycling companies may also disqualify any wood that has been stained or contaminated at one given point. In a nutshell, recycling wood is something so streamlined, and anything stained, painted, contaminated, or treated with chemicals would not be accepted for recycling.

The good news, though, is that most matches aren’t painted, stained, or treated with chemicals and would, therefore, be accepted for recycling by recycling companies. However, it would be pointless to gather all your matches and present them to a recycling company.

While you can recycle your matches and nobody takes it negatively, it’s a practice not very common. Therefore, it would help if you find other disposal methods for your unused matches; most probably composting them.

How Do You Dispose of Unused Matches?

It can happen sometimes. You have so many matches unused and would love to dispose of them. It’s a bit confusing and with so many beliefs jamming the internet. So what do you do or how do you dispose of unused matches?

The best way to dispose of unused matches is by soaking them in water for about an hour to kill their flammable properties before disposing of them.

Matches are usually made of wood and other flammable materials. Wood in itself is a highly flammable material, meaning a lot of care should be given when handling matches made from wood. There’s a unique method to dispose of unused matches without any accidents.

And the reason more caution is needed when disposing of unused matches is that there have been so many cases of matches catching fire in the waste bins. All matches may need to cause a fire with some heat.

In other words, each time unused matches are exposed to some heat, they would cause fire, and failure to control the fire in time could allow it to spread and cause more damage. Therefore, before throwing your unused matches in the waste bin, ensure you have soaked them in water for one or two hours to kill off their flammable properties.

Besides catching fire in the waste bin, unused matches can also catch fire in the garbage trucks. And because most of the garbage in garbage trucks is highly flammable (including the truck fuel), the fire caused by the unused matches may be uncontrollable.

Please also note that matches are made of wood, and so decomposing them might require a lot of time. However, microorganisms can break down these sticks much faster; taking a maximum of about six months. Therefore, the best way to dispose of your unused matches is first soaking them in water to remove their flammable properties then through them into your trash can.

1. How Do You Dispose Of Lighters And Matches?

The best way to dispose of your lighters and matches is by throwing them into the trash can and then waiting for your local waste management to collect them.

2. Are Matches Biodegradable?

Yes, matches are fully biodegradable, so they don’t contribute to the usual global problems. However, the production of matches will always come with some environmental hazards.

3. Can Used Matches Be Composted?

Yes, used matches can be used for compost. In fact, carbonized, burnt or even wooden matches are the best for compost as they’ll contribute to adding some brown nature to a compost pile. You can prepare your compost either in your backyard or in your kitchen compost bin.

4. Where Do You Put Used Matches?

You should ensure that you blow out your matches and not leave them smoldering.

When ready to dispose of them, soak them in water and throw them into your trash can. Soaking in water removes any flammable properties.

5. How Long Do Matches Take To Decompose?

Matches will take about six months to decompose fully. The presence of microorganisms can speed this up. If this is a long and tedious process for you, just soak your unused matches in water for an hour or two to remove their flammable properties, after which you can toss them into your can. Your local waste management will then come and collect them.

6. Can A Match Reignite?

No, matches cannot reignite because you will have used all their reactive materials. In short, once you have used your matches, there’s no amount of friction that would cause a reignition. Unlike a battery that you can always recharge, the energy responsible for lighting a match is irreversible.

7. Do matches stay lit forever?

No, matches cannot stay lit forever. They can always only remain lit for about five seconds. However, you still need to take precautions and blow out your matches once you have used them up. This will limit the chances of any accidents, such as fire.

Bottom Line

As you can see, you can throw away unused matches. However, there are some precautions you need to take as matches are highly flammable materials. You can either soak them in water for one or two hours, after which you can toss them into your trash can. Alternatively, you can decompose the unused matches, though they will take a bit longer to decompose, up to six months.