A-Z List of Recyclables

Aerosols

Aerosol cans that contained a hazardous material such as paints or pesticides and are empty can go in the trash.  Those with any quantity in them should be brought to a household hazardous waste collection event. Empty aerosol cans that did not contain a hazardous product can be recycled.

Air Conditioners

Air conditioners are accepted for a fee at the Casella Drop-off location in Cambridge and at the Highgate Transfer Station.

Air Pillows

See Packing Materials

These are not recyclable, therefore they are trash unless you can donate to a local shipping store or local post office.

Ammunition

Unwanted ammunition, road flares, and fireworks must be handled properly. Call the State Police Explosives Unit for disposal options.

Animals Carcass

Contact the State Solid Waste Management Program at 802-828-1138.

Asbestos

Both friable and non-friable asbestos must be handled and disposed of carefully. Contact the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources at 802-863-7236, or toll-free in Vermont 800-439-8550, for a list of licensed asbestos abatement contractors. You can also contact the Vermont Department of Health Lead and Asbestos Program (802-865-7784 or 800-439-8550) for assistance with health concerns about asbestos.

Aseptic Containers

Recycling options are not currently available, please place them in the trash.

Ashes

A great fertilizer, especially in the spring. Spread on your lawn or garden. Ashes can also be taken to the yard waste disposal drop off if they are cold! If not, they are a significant fire hazard. Wet them down, or store in a metal can until they have cooled completely before transporting.

Asphalt (Construction and Demolition)

Small loads of Construction and Demolition material is accepted at the Casella Drop-Off facility in Cambridge. Larger loads can be brought to the Highgate Transfer Station.

Automobiles

Junk cars can be brought to Hodgdon Scrap Yard. Donate working vehicles (or even those in need of repair) to a reuse outlet.

Good News Garage: 877-448-3288
Community Action Motors: 802-476-7800
Wheels for Wishes: 877-675-9474 (WISH)
Cars to Cure Breast Cancer: 855-450-2873
Charity Cars: 800-Charity

Batteries

Batteries can be brought to a Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day. They are also accepted at the Northwest Solid Waste Management District’s facility in Georgia.

Books

If books are still in good condition, donate to a used bookstore, thrift store or community rummage sale. The Gifford Thrift store will take books as long as they are not reference books (encyclopedias, bibles, etc). Unusable paperbacks and magazines can go in regular recycling while hardcovers go into the trash if they are not repurposed in another one of the above avenues.  You can remove the covers and place the pages in recycling.

Bottle Caps & Lids

Less than 2” in diameter are trash. Larger than 2” in diameter and displaying a recycle logo are recyclable.

Bottles

Recycle (empty and rinsed clean)

Bubble Wrap

These are not recyclable, therefore they are trash unless you can donate to a local shipping store or local post office.

Building materials

Construction and Demolition materials are accepted for a fee at Casella Drop-Off facility in Cambridge, and the Highgate Transfer Station.

Cans

Recycle (clean and empty)

Carpet

Carpets are accepted for a fee at Casella Drop-Off facility in Cambridge, and the Highgate Transfer Station.

Cat Litter

If conventional clumping litter, it goes in the trash.
If you use a natural plant-based litter, composting may be an option. Keep in mind when composting cat litter that it is easy to do, but should be kept separate from regular food-scrap based compost, and, when the composting process is complete, should be used on ornamentals only. Compost cat litter for 12 – 18 months to be certain pathogens have been killed by the composting process.

Catalogs

Can be place in your recycle bin.

Contact companies and ask to be removed from mailing list if unwanted.

To remove your name from most national direct marketing lists, register with the Direct Marketing Association’s (DMA) Mail Preference Service. Send a written request with your name as it appears on all catalog labels to:

Direct Marketing Association
Mail Preference Service
P.O. Box 9008, Farmingdale, NY 11735

Cell phones

There are a number of options for broken or unwanted cell phones. You can donate your working cell phone to Voices Against Violence in St. Albans for use by victims of domestic violence.

The phone can also be donated to the Barlow Street Community Teen Center, they collect them as a fundraiser and are given $1.00 per phone by a company that recycles them.

Cell phones are also accepted for recycling at the NWSWD Offices in Georgia and at the Highgate Transfer Station. They can also be brought to the local stores listed below. Contact the store directly for hours of operation.

  • Best Buy — 26 Cypress, Williston. NOTE: Best Buy also accepts rechargeable batteries.
  • Sprint PCS Store — 166 Sycamore, Williston, (802) 872-7732
  • Staples — 1375 Maple Tree Place, Williston and 861 Williston Rd, South Burlington, (802) 872-0260 NOTE: Staples also accepts pagers and rechargeable batteries.
  • Verizon — 825 Williston Rd, South Burlington, (802) 865-3100

Clean Wood

Use for home heating purposes or save for future household projects.

Clothing/Textiles

Donate to Goodwill, Salvation Army, local thrift store or church.

Computers

See Electronics

Check out the Vermont E-Waste Recycling program for more details on the program. Computers from residents are accepted for free at the Highgate Transfer Station, Northwest Solid Waste Management District locations, Ace Hardware in Enosburg, the Alburgh Transfer Station and at the Milton Drop-off Facility.

Copier toner

See print cartridges

Recycle at point of purchase in most cases. Staples has a program that recycles all toners and cartridges in store or online – up to 10 per month. In some cases you may earn rebates toward future purchases. More information about the Staples program can be found here. Or click here for more information about free nationwide toner printer cartridge recycling services.

Crayons

Check with your school, nursing home or daycare as crayons can be used in craft projects. You can also send them to Crazy Crayon’s National Crayon Recycle Program.

Dehumidifiers

Dehumidifiers are accepted for a fee at the Casella Drop-off location in Cambridge and at the Highgate Transfer Station.

Doors & Windows

Construction and Demolition materials are accepted for a fee at the Randolph and Northfield Transfer Stations.

The ReStore in Barre – 802-477-7800 will also take doors and windows.

The Vermont Agency of Natural Resources provides information about deconstruction here.

DVDs

See also CDs and Game Disks

If unscratched, ReStore in Barre– 802-477-7800

CD and DVDs are not recyclable and must be placed in the trash if they cannot be repurposed.

Egg Cartons

If you know someone with chickens, they may like them. Paper ones can be placed in your recycling bin or composted. Styrofoam cartons go in trash.

Electronics

Check out the Vermont E-Waste Recycling program for more details on the program.

Electronics are accepted at the Highgate Transfer Station, Northwest Solid Waste Management District locations, Ace Hardware in Enosburg, the Alburgh Transfer Station and at the Milton Drop-off Facility.

Eyeglasses

Used eyeglasses can be donated year-round through collection boxes located at offices of members of the American Optometric Association, Goodwill stores and Lens Crafters and most optometrist offices.  Call 800-74-SIGHT for collection information.

Fire Extinguishers

Unwanted fire extinguishers – Vermont Fire Extinguisher – 476-6116. Standard dry chemical fire extinguishers can be safely discarded as long as they are empty.

Fireworks/Explosives/Ammunition

Unwanted ammunition, road flares, and fireworks must be handled properly.  Call the State Police Explosives Unit 802-244-8727 before moving explosives and shock-sensitive materials. PLEASE do not dispose of any of these items in your trash. They are NOT accepted at the Household Hazardous Waste Collection days.

Fluorescent Bulbs/Lamps

Fluorescent light bulbs and tubes (straight, circular and U-shaped), compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs, UV radiation tubes, HID bulbs, and metal halide and sodium bulbs contain mercury and are all considered hazardous and should be brought to a Household Hazardous Waste Collection day.

Also some local outlets, such as those listed below, offer CFL recycling services, usually at no cost, either on their own or as part of utility-run programs.

  • J&L Hardware in Fairfax: 802-849-6402
  • Aubuchon’s St. Albans: 802-524-9855 – CFL Bulb Recycling Center
  • Aubuchon’s Enosburg Falls: 802- 933-2972 – CFL Bulb Recycling Center

Foil

Recycle clean foil and pie plates.

Food Waste

Compost in food waste in your back yard. Feed leftover food to chickens or pigs if you have them. Donate extra food (unopened) to the Vermont Food Bank or local food shelf.

Glass

Place clean glass in your recycling bin. Window pane glass is not recyclable and must go in the trash.

Hazardous Waste

You can bring household hazardous waste to any one of the scheduled Hazardous Waste Collection Events. Visit fairfaxvt.org for more information.

Hearing Aids

Recycle unwanted or older hearing aids and assistive devices at the Starkey Hearing Foundation.  Securely package the donation and mail to:
Hear Now
6700 Washington Avenue South
Eden Prairie, MN 55344
866-354-3254

Hypodermic needles/sharps

Needles, lancets and syringes used for home health care are not regulated and can go in the trash.  To protect workers in the waste industry, place all needles in a sealed container and label it “Sharps – Do Not Recycle.”  A plastic soda or laundry detergent bottle with a lid makes a good container.

Irons

Plastic irons can go in the regular trash. Metal irons can be recycled as scrap metal provided they do not contain a mercury switch (older irons would have one).

Latex Paint

Containers with any quantity in them should come to a Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event.  Your local hardware store may take them as well. Both latex and acrylic paint are safe to go in the trash as long as the contents are completely dried up.  If there is a little bit in the can, take the lid off and let it air dry (keep away from children and pets).  If there is a lot in the can you can add saw dust or crumpled up newspaper and once that is dry, it can go in the trash. If you have a full can that you want to get rid of, contact 855-724-6809 or visit paintcare.org for a list of locations that accept paint.

Leaf and Yard Waste

Composting is the best answer for these types of materials. Piling leaves, brush and yard waste near your composter will provide you with ample material throughout the year to generate compost for your garden. You can rent a small chipper for little money to turn larger brush into mulch for your compost or garden. You can also bring leaf and yard waste to any facility that accepts trash. You can also contact your waste hauler to arrange for leaf and yard waste collection.

Medications

In most cases, unwanted medication should be placed in the trash. See pharmaceuticals or prescription pills.  Occasionally, disposal events are put on by law enforcement.  Check with local law enforcement when the next event would be in your area.

Microwaves

Can be placed in the scrap metal container at the Casella Drop-Off in Cambridge or at the Highgate Transfer Station. Microwaves are not considered electronic waste.

Motor Oil

Used motor oil (no antifreeze or gasoline mixed in) can be taken to the Fairfax Town Garage.

Newspaper

Place in recycling bin. Newspapers MAY be used in compost – HOWEVER be sure that the makeup of your newspapers ink is compatible with the type of compost you are trying to harvest.

Oil-Based Paint

Bring to a Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event. Also, check out the PaintCare website  for complete list of sites that collect  paints throughout the State of Vermont.

Paint can be brought to NWSMD in Fairfax, Sherwin Williams in St. Albans and Aubuchon Hardware in Jeffersonville.

Pizza Boxes

Remove any leftovers and place in recycling bin. If the box has grease on the inside then place in the trash.

Plastic Bags

First we encourage you to reuse them, or use cloth bags; don’t use plastic bags in the first place.
PLEASE do not place them in with your curbside or zero sort recycling. You can bring them to most major grocery store plastic bag recycling bins:

Plastic grocery bags get recycled at:

Shaws
Hannaford’s
Price Chopper

Propane Tanks

Return to the retailer for refill or exchange. The new style tanks are refillable. Please check with a local hardware store or convenience store for an exchange program.

Smoke Detectors

Smoke detectors contain a small amount of radioactive material, which does not travel very far, even in air. Nonetheless, do not open the insides of a smoke detector, as that could remove the shielding, possibly exposing you to levels above background. Vermont residents may dispose of smoke detectors as trash.

Alternatively, smoke detectors may be mailed back to the manufacturer for recycling. Mail smoke detectors by surface or UPS ground mail. (Specify on the package that they should not be shipped via air.) Contact the manufacturer’s toll-free number for instructions and mailing address.

Two manufacturers that make a large percentage of the smoke detectors in use may be reached at the following numbers:

  • First Alert/BRK Brands (Aurora, IL) 800-323-9005
  • American Sensors (Canada) 800-387-4219

Businesses with smoke detectors should call the Vermont Environmental Assistance Division in at 1-800-974-9559, to receive information about proper disposal.

Styrofoam

Styrofoam is not recyclable and can be placed in the trash.  Try purchasing products that do not contain Styrofoam.

Tires

Tires can be brought to the Casella Drop-off Facility in Cambridge or to the Highgate Transfer Station.