Paint Cans (Empty) Recycling Cart Completely empty and dry paint cans and buckets can be recycled in your curbside recycling cart. If there is still paint in the can, follow the directions for paint disposal. Solidified latex paint must be dropped off at one of our hazardous waste facilities or disposed in your trash cart. Keep If Not Empty If the can is not entirely empty, store it for future use. Once a paint can is opened, it will last for two years, but an unopened can of oil, acrylic or latex paint can last for over 10 years.