One out of 20 people change their own motor oil but use disposal methods that could harm the environment, according to a survey by the US Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS). The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that just one gallon of used oil (about 4 litres) has the potential of contaminating up to one million gallons of drinking water. Improper disposal methods can have serious environmental effects.
When you change your own oil, you can dispose of used motor oil by taking it to a recycling center or a gas or service station (or check with your local fire department for their recommendations). Recycling instead of improperly disposing of oil can could save thousands of barrels of oil each day. Used oil can be re-refined into lubricants, processed into fuel oils and used as raw materials for the refining and petrochemical industries.