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The Yes and No of What Can Go in the Recycle Bins

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YES NO

Aluminum
Empty and rinse.

YES

  • cans
  • aluminum foil
  • pie pans, aluminum trays

NO

  • siding
  • scrap metal
  • foil-wrapped beverage pouches (Capri Sun)
  • pots and pans
  • utensils
  • tools

Steel (tin cans)
Empty and rinse. Labels do not need to be removed.

YES

  • food and beverage cans (metal lids OK)
  • pet food, soup cans (metal lids OK)
  • EMPTY aerosol spray cans (food, laundry, beauty)

NO

  • hangers
  • toys
  • aerosol spray cans that contained hazardous products: spray paint, insecticides, etc.
  • scrap metal
  • appliances
  • paint cans
  • pipes
  • pots and pans
  • fuel tanks
  • utensils
  • car parts
  • tools

Glass
Empty and rinse. Labels do not need to be removed. Keep lids on.

YES

  • food and beverage bottles and jars

NO

  • ceramics
  • cookware (Pyrex)
  • light bulbs
  • windows
  • baking dishes
  • coffee mugs
  • fluorescent lights
  • glass
  • art
  • dishware
  • medicine bottles
  • eye glasses
  • wine corks
  • drinking glasses
  • plate glass
  • vases
  • canning jars
  • broken glass
  • mirrors
  • holiday lights

Plastics
Empty and rinse. Keep caps on.

YES

  • food containers: margarine, yogurt, cooking oil, condiments, peanut butter
  • beverage bottles and jugs: soda, water, juice, milk
  • detergent bottles, dish soap bottles
  • personal care bottles: shampoo, soap, etc.
  • clear plastic clamshells (no black or Styrofoam)

NO

  • plastic bags
  • meat trays
  • containers that contained motor oil, anti-freeze, pesticides, pool chemicals or other hazardous substances
  • plastic wrap/cling wrap
  • egg cartons
  • Styrofoam (polystyrene)
  • medicine and pill bottles
  • cups/take-out containers
  • "packing" peanuts
  • cups, plates, utensils, straws
  • packaging of any kind: foam, blister pack
  • curbside/other plastic bins
  • cookie trays
  • dry cleaner/garment bags
  • black plastic
  • laundry baskets
  • indoor/outdoor/patio furniture
  • liners from food packaging
  • toys
  • swimming pools
  • compostable plastics
  • flower pots
  • hoses; PVC piping or tubing
  • cellophane food bags (e.g., candy bars, cookies, pasta)
  • 5-gallon pails; buckets
  • containers bigger than 2.5 gallons
  • VCR tapes, CDs, cases
  • Nalgene water bottles
  • frozen food bags/pouches
  • tarps
  • holiday lights

Cartons
Empty, rinse, and flatten. Throw away straws.

YES

  • milk and juice cartons (plastic spout OK)
  • soymilk, soup and drink boxes (remove straws)

NO

  • foil-wrapped pouches (Capri Sun)
  • frozen juice cartons
  • frozen food packaging
  • plastic straws

Paper
Clean paper only. Flatten boxes. "Windows" in envelopes, staples, paper clips, tape all OK.

YES

  • newspaper, inserts, magazines, junk mail
  • white, colored, glossy, and construction paper
  • shredded paper—put in paper bag corrugated cardboard, clean pizza boxes (no grease or food)
  • boxboard (for example, cereal boxes)
  • gift wrap, gift bags, cards, gift tissue paper (no metallic inks, foil, wire, glitter)
  • paperback books and phonebooks

NO

  • soda, beer plastic rings
  • butter, margarine boxes
  • glossy boxes that show white strands when torn (frozen food boxes)
  • paper cups
  • paper towels, napkins
  • paper plates
  • tissues
  • egg cartons
  • Tyvek or padded envelopes
  • blueprints
  • frozen juice cartons
  • hardcover books
  • dirtied paper (pet waste, paint)
  • take-out containers
  • stickers and sticker sheeting
  • copy paper packaging

 

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