Many materials can be recycled through curbside recycling programs or recycling centers. Below are common recyclable items showing some examples with instructions and tips on how to prepare the various items for recycling.

In the Fall of 2013, local recycling programs expanded to include cartons in the list of items that can be placed in recycling containers at their home or business. Cartons are also known as aseptic containers. These containers hold things such as soup, milk, juice, soy and other beverage and food items. Residents and businesses who receive their recycling service from the following businesses can place cartons in their recycling bins: City of San Diego (for single family residents in the City of San Dieo limits), Republic Services (formerly Allied Waste), EDCO and Waste Management.

Aluminum Cans

Examples

  • Soda
  • Water
  • Coffee and Tea Drinks
  • Sports Drinks
  • Energy Drinks
  • Fruit Drinks
  • Beer and Malt Beverages
  • Wine Coolers and Distilled Spirit Coolers

Instructions

  • Be sure to rinse cans.
  • California Refund Value(CRV) vending machines will not accept pre-crushed cans.
Aluminum Cans

Special Note

In California, many beverages packaged in aluminum, glass, plastic and bi-metal require a deposit (the refund value). This deposit is:

  • 5¢ for containers under 24 ounces
  • 10¢ for containers 24 ounces or larger

The containers will have CRV, CA Redemption Value or CA Refund written on the label. Your deposit can be collected at any certified redemption center.  Visit ILACSD's One-stop Recycling Resource or call ILACSD’s Recycling Hotline 1-800-237-BLUE to find the nearest recycling center to you.

Steel Cans

Examples

  • Pure steel cans
  • Cans with a thin tin coating
  • Soup cans
  • Pet food cans
  • Beverages
  • Empty Aerosols
  • Empty, water-based Paint cans

Instructions

  • Be sure to rinse cans before recycling.
  • Empty spray cans completely.
Steel Cans

Special Note

If a magnet sticks to the can, it's definitely steel.

Corrugated Cardboard

Examples

  • Boxes and other items made of waffle-type corrugated cardboard

Instructions

  • Flatten boxes and remove plastic tape
Corrugated Cardboard

White Office Paper

Examples

  • White Office PaperCopy paper
  • Typing paper
  • Computer paper

Mixed Paper

Examples

  • Colored paper
  • Glossy newspaper inserts
  • magazines
  • brochures
  • junk mail
  • manila envelopes
  • chipboard
  • paperboard
  • phone books
  • envelopes (With or without plastic windows)

Instructions

  • Flatten cereal and food boxes.
Steel Cans

Special Note

Plastic or wax-coated paper or tissue items are not recyclable.

Glass

Examples

  • Glass jars
  • Juice Bottles
  • Wine Bottles

Instructions

  • Remove lids
  • rinse

GlassSpecial Note

Other glass items such as Pyrex, window glass, ceramics, and light bulbs are not currently recyclable.

Newspaper

Examples

  • News print

Instructions

  • Don't tie with string.

NewspaperSpecial Note

Recyclers prefer dry, stacked newspaper.

Plastic

Examples

  • CRV bottles
  • Narrow-Necked bottles
  • Screw-Top beverage bottles
  • Milk Jugs
  • Water Jugs
  • Rigid Plastics (yogurt containers, plastic toys, etc.)

Instructions

  • PlasticRinse containers
  • remove caps

Appliances/Electronics

Examples

  • refrigerators
  • computers
  • TVs
  • cell phone
  • stereos

Instructions

  • For information about recycling these and other appliances and electronics
Appliances/Electronics

Motor Oil

Instructions

  • Free disposal is now available at More Than 250 recycling centers throughout the county. Find one near you by:
  • Curbside collection of motor oil is now available in many unincorporated county areas, as well as some cities. Ask your recycling/trash hauling company if they offer this convenient service.

Special Note

Motor oil is a serious pollutant to California’s soils and groundwater. Motor Oil

Paint

Instructions

  • There are 30 paint retailers in San Diego County that currently participate in the PaintCare program. There are guidelines to follow when recycling paint at one of these retail locations. Here are the basics:
  • Paint must be in its original container
  • Container must be labeled
  • Container must be in good condition, not leaking
  • Container must be five (5) gallons or smaller
  • Please check with the site if you have more than 5 gallons.
  • More information about PaintCare can be found by visiting http://www.paintcare.org/. Find a participating paint retail location near you by visiting www.WasteFreeSD.org

Special Note

Paint is a costly, and serious pollutant to California’s soils and groundwater. >

Miscellaneous

Examples

  • Asphalt / Concrete
  • Furniture
  • Household Items
  • Radiators
  • Scrap Metal
  • Tires
  • Toilets / Bath Fixtures
  • Videotapes
  • Water Heaters
  • Yard / Wood Waste

Instructions

  • For information about recycling these and other items
Miscellaneous