Learn about some of the top recycling contaminants below and then test your knowledge by playing the Sorting Game in the What Goes Where tool.
Rechargeable Lithium Batteries
Rechargeable lithium batteries, such as the ones used in digital cameras, laptops, and power tools, should never go in the recycling cart. These batteries can cause fires resulting in the loss of an entire recycling load, and pose a threat to the safety of waste workers and the community. Instead, dispose of these batteries at a Household Hazardous Waste collection site or community collection event.
Tanglers are “stringy things” like hoses, wires, and plastic bags that can get caught in machinery at recycling facilities, shutting down operations for hours, even days. These items should be disposed of in the green lid garbage cart instead. Many grocery stores have receptacles for plastic bag recycling.
Although air filters contain some recyclable material, they cannot be processed at recycling facilities and should not be put in the blue lid recycling cart. No matter how dirty or clean the filter, these belong in the green lid garbage cart.