What to Recycle

Paper and Cardboard
  PAPER AND CARDBOARD  How to Prepare
DO NOT INCLUDE
 Newspaper and inserts
Loose or in paper bags (no plastic)
- Plastic bags (recycle at stores—see “plastic film” recycling info below) 
- Paper contaminated with food or vegetable oil (to compost) 
- Used paper towels, napkins, tissues (to compost) 
- Used paper plates (trash if plastic coating; to compost if 100% paper and no plastic coating)
- Paper cups (trash due to plastic coating)
- Paper contaminated w/ paint/debris (trash)
- Ice cream or frozen food coated packaging (trash due to plastic coating)
- Tyvek mailing envelopes or bubble wrap (can be recycled with plastic bags—see “plastic film” info below)
- Waxed cardboard produce boxes (to compost) 
 Corrugated cardboard
 Flatten boxes
 Chipboard/cereal/pasta/shoe boxes, file folders, cardboard egg cartons
Flatten boxes; plastic windows OK
Office paper, junk mail, magazines, catalogs, glossy paper, phone books, paper bags
Plastic windows OK; paper bags must be clean and empty
 Pizza boxes
No grease, no food/cheese
 Unused paper plates
No grease, no food scraps
 Hard- and soft-cover books
 
 Shredded paper
Loose or in paper bags (not plastic)
 Wrapping paper
No plastics or foils, no ribbons
Paper goods OK with staples, spiral bindings, plastic envelope windows



Comingled Glass, Metal, Plastic
GLASS, METAL, PLASTICHow to Prepare
DO NOT INCLUDE
ABSOLUTELY NO PLASTIC BAGS, PLASTIC WRAPPING & PLASTIC FILM COVERS (even with recycle symbol) because they tangle and jam sorting equipment; recycle at stores (see “plastic film” recycling info below), or send to trash 
Glass bottles (all colors)
Remove metal caps and include in commingled; neck rings OK
- Window glass, light bulbs, drinking glasses, Pyrex (trash)
- Ceramic items (trash)
Metal food cans and lids (steel, tin, aluminum)
Do not flatten, clean, labels OK
- Scrap metal (can damage sorting equipment; send to scrap metal area)
- Aerosol cans if partially full (hazardous waste; if empty, OK to recycle w/ cans) 
- Latex paint cans (to trash once paint inside has dried out - pop lid to dry) 
Aluminum foil, pie plates, trays
Foil best as 3–4” balls (or larger) for capture by equipment
 
Plastic containers labeled #1 thru #7 Clean plastic plant pots OK
Do not flatten, plastic caps may be left on, neck rings OK
- StyrofoamTM goes to dedicated bin for StyrofoamTM only – see info on page 2
- PLA compostable ware (to compost) 
- Latex paint cans (to trash once paint inside has dried out - pop lid to dry) 
Gable-top cartons (milk, juice, etc.)
Do not flatten, plastic spout OK

Aseptic rectangular “cartons” such as juice boxes, soy milk, soup stock
Do not flatten 

 

 Additional Materials Accepted for Recycling
Material How to Prepare
  DO NOT INCLUDE
RIGID PLASTIC
  
Rigid plastic objects with no recycle symbol (plastic toys, rigid wading pools, crates, etc.)
Remove batteries from toys, etc. Deposit in Rigid Plastics area
Metal parts or batteries not OK Soft plastics, such as vinyl hoses, inflatable pools (trash) 



STYROFOAMTM 
Click here for collection dates DO NOT INCLUDE
White Rigid Styrofoam, Styrofoam coolers

Deposit in large green container      (Must be clean)

Food containers (can contaminate load)
StyrofoamTM peanuts
In plastic bag to prevent blowing
Biodegradable/starch peanuts (compost)
 



SCRAP METAL 
 DO NOT INCLUDE
 Scrap Metal
Deposit in Scrap Metal area
Wiry material (trash – jams equipment)



FLUORESCENT LIGHT BULBS
 DO NOT INCLUDE
Compact fluorescent light bulbs, tubesDeposit in dedicated bin area
Incandescent bulbs (trash)



BATTERIES
 DO NOT INCLUDE
Button & rechargeable batteries (b/c hazardous contents incl. mercury
Bring to gatehouse
Alkaline batteries such as AA, AAA (OK to trash)



YARD WASTE 
 DO NOT INCLUDE
Grass, leaves, flowers
Bring loose
Plastic or paper bags  
Brush, twigs, logs Less than 18 inches in diameter Plastic or paper bags 
Wood chips, easily raked materials
Bring loose, in bins/buckets to dump
Stumps
Christmas trees
Remove tinsel from trees
 



E-WASTE 
 DO NOT INCLUDE
Electronics (plug-in or battery): computer, printer, scanner, etc.
Deposit in dedicated Electronics bin     No TV's or Monitors
 
Batteries must be removed. Cell phones go to gatehouse at entrance



DONATION AREA
 DO NOT INCLUDE
Gently used items may be donated to the Transfer Station Swap Shop
Clean, dry, in working conditionSee Swap Shop guidelines for accepted items (link on page 1)
Clothing/textiles may be donated to Red Cross, Salvation Army or Textile Recycling-Reuse Program
All clean, dry, odorless textiles accepted: rips, stains OK; shoes, belts, curtains, bedding OK
Mildewed, damp or dirty items



CONCRETE, CEMENT, BRICKS, DIRT 
  
Concrete, cement, bricks, dirt
Deposit in Concrete/Cement area
 



WASTE OIL
 DO NOT INCLUDE 
Used motor oil
See gate attendant Solvents, gasoline, water or debris 



USED ANTIFREEZE
  
Used antifreeze
See gatehouse attendant
 


 UNACCEPTABLE ITEMS

- Chemicals/Solvents: oil paints/stains, pesticides, gasoline, arts & crafts supplies (solvents), photo chemicals, pool chemicals, thinners & solvents 
- Household/Yard Waste: asbestos fluorescent fixtures with ballast, large propane tanks, stumps 
- Other: medical waste, railroad ties, 55 gallon drums (unless cut in half with ends removed)

 Some items on the “unacceptable” list may be disposed of during Household Hazardous Waste Day. For more info on Household Hazardous Waste Day, see our Hazardous Waste Webpage.

- SEE GATEHOUSE ATTENDANT for these items handled at no charge: button batteries, rechargeable batteries, cell phones, antifreeze; and for these items handled for small fee: monitors & televisions & CRT’s, hard drives, bulky items such as small propane tanks.

- “PLASTIC FILM” RECYCLING: for information and drop-off store locations for recycling plastic grocery bags and other related “plastic film” items (bread bags, produce bags, dry cleaner bags, cereal box liners, plastic packaging on paper towels, ziplock bags, etc.), click here.

Print the Town of Acton What to Recycle Flyer.

Additional Resources