Pressurized Tanks

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Gas (CO2) Cylinders

CO2 gas cylinders are used for recreational activities such as Paintball games.  Because they are pressurized, they must be handled carefully whether they are being refilled or discarded.  Even when being refilled, they must periodically undergo special testing to make sure they do not pose an explosion hazard.

First Strike Paintball Games, located in Chippewa Falls, can handle these cylinders. Call, 715-577-1488, or visit their website for more information. 

Helium-tankHelium Tanks

Once a helium tank has been properly emptied it may be taken to a scrap metal dealer.

How to properly empty a helium tank:

  • Take the tank to a well ventilated area, preferably outside. Open the valve handle. Press and hold down the nozzle until the releasing helium sound stops.
  • Remove the nozzle from the valve stem using a wrench.
  • Locate the rupture disk, which is a small plastic circle usually located on the shoulder of the tank. Using a flat head screwdriver and hammer, carefully pierce and remove the rupture disk. The edges around the rupture disk can be sharp so be careful.
  • Draw a circle around the open rupture disk with a permanent marker, then write “empty” on the tank, near the opening.

Click here to view a video on how to empty a helium tank.

Warning: Inhaling helium can be dangerous to your health.

Propane Tanks

If you have an empty 20 pound propane tank that you aren’t planning to refill and want to dispose of, there are a few choices.

The first (and preferred) option is to return any empty and undamaged tank to one of Cedar Country Cooperative’s Auto Repair locations located at 807 Main St, Menomonie or 401 Railroad Ave, Colfax; or to any other local business that will collect the tanks.

small propaneThe second option for 20 pound tanks that are no longer reusable, or for small camp size propane tanks, is to recycle them at a scrap metal dealer.  These locations require that the valve or cap must first be removed from all tanks and that the tanks should have an additional hole placed in them (the vendor has no recommendations on this process).

Please note that these canisters should only be recycled at scrap yards.  They are not accepted at the county's recycling drop-off stations or by the haulers providing curbside recycling services.