How to Dispose of 3D Printer Resin

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Updated February 10, 2023

If you’re shopping for an excellent printer, you may wonder how to properly dispose of 3D printer resin. After all, the liquid resin for premium 3D printers is usually a toxic substance that can cause allergic skin reactions. Additionally, the fumes from the resin can cause breathing issues. So, responsible users should treat leftover uncured resin as hazardous waste. Stick around to learn how to dispose of 3D printer resin.


  • Liquid SLA 3D printing resin is a toxic substance that is harmful to the environment and humans, so you cannot treat it like normal waste.
  • Wear safety gear like gloves, goggles, and a face mask to prevent unintended contact with uncured resin.
  • Place leftover resin in a clear container and cure it in sunlight to make it safe for disposal.

How to Properly Dispose of 3D Printer Resin

When you’re learning how to use a resin 3D printer, you need to invest in proper resin disposal methods. Experts recommend safety goggles, nitrile gloves, and proper ventilation during the 3D printing process. That said, learn what 3D printer resin is made of to understand the manufacturer’s recommended safety precautions.

Insider Tip

Leave your protective equipment in the sun to turn uncured resin residue into a non-toxic substance, making it safe to handle.

Figuring out how long resin can sit in a 3D printer differs depending on whether you use traditional or eco-friendly resins. In either case, you can master how to paint 3D prints, but only on fully-cured resin pieces.

Method 1 – Disposing of Unused Resin

STEP 1 Take Safety Precautions

Never handle resin waste without safety considerations like gloves, goggles, and a well-ventilated room. Place paper towels on your workstation to catch drops of resin.

STEP 2 Remove the Resin Tank

Unseat the resin vat and place it on your workstation.

STEP 3 Pour the Excess Resin into a Container

Grab a clear plastic or glass bottle and install the funnel. Empty the resin tank into the clear container.

STEP 4 Place the Resin Container Outside

Cure the resin in the bottle with a UV light or leave it outside on a sunny day. If you place the container outside, you’ll have hardened resin within 8 hours. A curing station should treat the waste resin within a few minutes.

STEP 5 Dispose of the Container

Once the resin hardens, complete the disposal process by throwing the container in the trash.

Method 2 – Dispose of a Used Resin Bottle

STEP 1 Prepare Your Workstation

Wear gloves, goggles, and a mask before you attempt to dispose of resin.

STEP 2 Pour IPA into the Bottle

Take the used resin bottle and place a funnel in the bottle’s mouth. Pour quality isopropyl alcohol into the bottle, seal it, and shake the bottle.

STEP 3 Pour the Mixture into a Clear Container

Pour the mixture of isopropyl alcohol and uncured resin into a clear container.

STEP 4 Place the Container in the Sun

Place the container outside on a sunny day, and leave the cap off to allow the alcohol to dissolve.

STEP 5 Dispose of the Container

The resin will harden and cure, making it safe to throw away.


Place paper towels around your desktop-scale resin printer to prevent liquid resin spills on your workspace.

STAT: A 2019 Global EY survey showed that 41% more businesses applied 3D printing in 2019 than in 2016. (source)

How to Dispose of 3D Printer Resin FAQs

What is water-washable resin?

Water-washable resin lets users clean their 3D models in water rather than an isopropyl alcohol solution. Water-wash resin is still a toxic compound, so you shouldn't treat it like a typical household waste.

Can I reuse 3D printing resin?

Assuming it isn't too old or dirty, you can reuse the leftovers in 3D printer resin vats. Experts recommend emptying the leftover resin into a bottle, but you shouldn't pour it back into the original container of resin. Unfortunately, you cannot melt and repurpose botched resin cures or failed prints.

Does plant-based resin cause skin irritation?

Even though plant-based is more environmentally friendly than normal resin, it is still a hazardous material. Prolonged skin contact can still cause skin irritation, among other allergic reactions and health concerns.
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