Used Oil Recycling

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The purpose of the used oil and filter recycling program is to educate and motivate residents and businesses in the opportunities provided with a countywide network of used oil collection sites by making it convenient to recycle used oil and filters. As a result, this will increase the recycling of used oil and filters, decrease the demand for crude oil and raise the demand for re-refined motor oil.

Facts about Used Oil

  • Used oil is considered a hazardous waste in California.
  • It's against the law to use new or used motor oil as weed killer or dust control.
  • Oil never wears out it just gets dirty. Most vehicles can run over 5,000 miles or more between oil changes. Consult your owner's manual or click here to check your number.
  • It's illegal to bury used oil in the ground, burn used oil, or dump it in the trash, storm drain or sewer.
  • Each year, 200 million gallons of oil is dumped into our waterways, sewers, and landfills by people changing their own motor oil. This is equivalent to the 2010 BP Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico!
  • It takes only 1 gallon of used oil to produce the same amount of motor oil as 42 gallons of crude oil -- while requiring only 1/3 of the energy.
  • For every 1 gallon of used oil recovered, 2.5 quarts of re-refined oil can be produced!
  • In 2015, 31,000 gallons of oil was recycled in Fresno County. If this oil had been poured into our waterways, this is enough oil to pollute Huntington Lake.
  • Don't mix used oil with other fluids such as antifreeze, solvents, transmission fluid, gasoline, water or debris. This makes the oil more toxic and non-recyclable.

Don't Forget the Filter!

oil_filters_aMost Certified Collection Centers (CCCs) are able to take in used oil filters when you drop off your used motor oil. Each filter contains 10 ounces of oil that needs to be drained and recycled. Plus, filters are made with a steel case that can be reused. Most facilities will be able to help with the punching and draining of the oil, however you can drain it yourself into the oil container. For more information, click here to read the California Department of Toxic Substances Control notice on draining used oil filters. Last year, the County of Fresno and the cities of Clovis, Coalinga, Firebaugh, Fowler, Huron, Kerman, Kingsburg, Mendota, Orange Cove, Parlier, Reedley, San Joaquin, Sanger and Selma recycled 2 tons of steel from oil filters. So keep up the good work and recycle your filters, too!

Switch to Re-Refined Oil!

Responsible drivers throughout California are making a change for the better. They're switching to re-refined or recycled motor oil. And it's easy to see why:

  • Test after test has shown that re-refined oil is just as good, if not better, than virgin oil.
  • Re-refined lubricants that are American Petroleum Institute (API) certified comply fully with vehicle manufacturers' warranty requirements.
  • The price of re-refined oil is comparable to virgin oil. In some cases, it costs less.

rerefinedoil-dropRe-refined oil products are subject to the same stringent refining, compounding, and performance standards applied to virgin oil products. API-licensed re-refined oils must pass the same cold-start, pump ability, rust-corrosion, engine-wear, and high-temperature viscosity tests that virgin oils do. The API and American Automobile Manufacturers Association (AAMA) have developed the Engine Oil Licensing Certification System (EOLCS) to ensure all engine oils consistently meet performance specifications.

Re-refining is an energy-efficient and environmentally beneficial method of managing used oil. Less energy is required to produce a gallon of re-refined base stock than a base stock from crude oil.

Lubricating oil does not wear out, it simply becomes dirty as it does its job. Once water and contaminants are removed from collected used oil, it is returned to a full and useful life as a re-refined base oil. There is no compromise in the quality of re-refined oil.

A few users include California Highway Patrol, PG&E, County of Los Angeles, City of Sacramento, U.S. Postal Service, Caltrans, City of San Francisco, and Ventura County, including all emergency vehicles. Rerefined oil is even used on the NASCAR race circuit.

For more information on re-refined oil, visit CalRecycle's Website

certifiedcenter_300_409_cCertified Collection Centers

Certified Collection Centers are available across all the cities and unincorporated Fresno County. They have storage tanks on site to collect and safely dispose of your used oil and filters. Some locations pay $0.40 per gallon up to 5 gallons for your used oil. Always call ahead to check availability and business hours of a used oil collection center. Remember, never drop off used oil during non-business hours. On behalf of the County of Fresno and the cities, thank you for recycling your used oil!

motor_oilcontainerstretchedFor a list of Certified Collection Centers in Fresno County.

Para obtener una lista de centros de recogida Certificados en el Condado de Fresno.

For a list of Certified Collection Centers around California.

Encuentre un Centro Certificado de Reciclaje Cerca de Usted!



The used oil and filter recycling program is funded through grants provided by the California Department of Resources, Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle). These grants fund the recruitment, coordination, promotion and maintenance of the Certified Collection Centers (CCCs) and promote public outreach and education for used motor oil and oil filter recycling programs. For additional information, contact the County of Fresno at (559) 600-4259.

If you need to report illegal dumping of motor oil, please call 1 (800) 69TOXIC (698-6342). Please call the Resources Division at (559) 600-4259 if you have any questions or need information about Recycling. You can also email staff at

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