Almost anytime you get your vehicle's oil changed or anti-freeze replaced these days, a portion of the cost goes to a disposal fee. That's because those substances are unsafe. The same applies to those industrious do-it-yourself types.
In today's economy, it makes sense to want to save a few bucks by doing some of these maintenance services yourself. But be aware that the products you're handling -- brake fluids, transmission fluids, antifreeze, washer fluids, motor oils, car batteries, even replacement light bulbs -- can pose a danger, both before and after you use them. Store and dispose of them carefully. If unsure, check with your local fire department or department of public works.
Many communities host an annual (or even more frequent) "hazardous waste disposal day." Your local municipality can also be a clearinghouse of information if you need to discard other potentially dangerous products, from fluorescent lights to batteries to fire-resistant carpeting. There's typically a fee for that service, but it's a small investment in exchange for your peace of mind.
Are there dangers lurking underneath the sink?