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Chicago Recycling Guide: All Materials

Where can I recycle materials in Chicago?
Material Is Material accepted in Chicago's Blue Cart Program or at Recycling Drop-Off Centers? Alternative Recycling Outlet Mail or Drop-Off Program Address Phone
Website
Details and/or Restrictions
Aerosol cans Yes NA NA NA NA Must be empty
Aluminum Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org

 

Accepted aluminum includes: cans,clean tin foil, pie tins

 

Appliances (Household) No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Salvation Army
  2. Recycling Information Center
  1. NA
  2. 1.800.YES.1.CAN

www.salvationarmy.com

www.aham.org

  • Working appliances only
  • Call the Recycling Information Center for nearby metal recycling facilities that accept appliances

Baby Bottles (plastic or

glass)

No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com

www.salvationarmy.com

NA
Batteries (alkaline) No NA NA NA NA Alkaline batteries should be disposed of in regular refuse.
Batteries (rechargeable) No Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility Drop Off 1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago, IL 60608 NA
www.cityofchicago.org/hccrf

Hours: Tu 7-noon; Th 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am - 3pm

Batteries (lead acid) No

Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility

Drop Off 1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago, IL 60608 NA
www.cityofchicago.org/
Hours: Tu 7-noon; Th 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am - 3pm

 

Bicycles No Working Bikes Drop Off 2434 S. Western Ave. Chicago IL 60608

773.847.5440
www.workingbikes.org

Hours:

Wed & Thurs 12-7pm

Fri & Sat 12-5pm

Books (paperback) Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Books (hard cover) No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
  3. Reading Tree: Books for Charity
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com

www.readingtree.org

NA
Bras No The Bra Recyclers Drop Off and Mail 3317 S. Higley Rd, Ste 114-441, Gilbert, AZ 85297 480.988.2283
http://brarecycling.com
Should be in good condition
Brown Paper Bags Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Bubble Wrap No Multiple Drop Off Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
NA
Building Materials No The ReBuilding Exchange Drop Off 3335 W. 47th St., Chicago IL 60632 773.847.3761
www.exchange.org

Call

Candy

Wrappers

No TerraCycle Mail NA NA
www.terracycle.com
Must join a "brigage" to get mailing details
Car Batteries No Multiple Drop Off Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
Check Earth911.com for the location nearest you
Cardboard Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
Please flatten boxes
Carpet (nylon) No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Carpet Recovery
  2. Shaw Carpet
NA
www.carpetrecovery.org

www.shawfloors.com

  •  NA
  • Any carpet (500sq yards or more) with EcoWorx backing will be collected, transported and recycled for free, regardless if its being replaced with Shaw Carpet. Shaw Carpet will collect, transport and recycle any type of carpet (7500sq yards or more) if it is being replaced by a Shaw product, for free.
CDs No Multiple Drop Off and Mail Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
NA
Cell Phones No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility (1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago IL 60642)
  2. Earth911.com
NA
www.cityofchicago/

 

 


www.earth911.com

  • Hours: Tu 7-noon; Th 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am - 3 pm
  • Check Earth911.com for the location nearest to you
Chip Bags No TerraCycle Mail NA NA
www.terracycle.com
Must join a "brigade" to get mailing details

Christmas/

String Lights

No Multiple NA Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
Search for "string lights"
Cleaning Products (bleach, drain cleaner, and other harsh cleaners) No Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility Drop Off 1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago, IL  60642 NA
www.cityofchicago.org/hccrf
Hours: Tu 7-noon; Th 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am - 3 pm
Clothing No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
  3. Gaia
  4.  USAgain
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com www.gaia.org
www.usagain.com/
NA
Compact Florescent Lightbulbs (CFLs) No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility (1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago IL 60642)
  2. Home Depot
  3. Ikea
  4. True Value
  5. Ace Hardware
NA

 

 

 

www.homedepot.com
www.ikea.com
www.truevalue.com
www.acehardware.com
  • Hours: Tu 7-noon; Th 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am - 3 pm
  • NA
  • NA
  • NA
  • NA
Computers No Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility Drop Off 1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago, IL  60642 NA
www.cityofchicago.org/
Hours: Tu 7-noon; Th 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am - 3 pm
Construction Debris No Recycling Systems Incorporated Drop Off

3152 South California Avenue, Chicago, IL 60608

NA

Call for a quote (773.579.0100). Construction debris can also be posted on Craigslist or the Construction Material Depot 

Corks No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Broadway Cellars (5900 N. Broadway)
  2. Whole Foods
NA NA
www.wholefoods.com
  • NA
  • Visit the website to find the nearest location
Crayons (broken) No Crazy Crayons Drop Off NA NA
www.crazycrayons.com
Only accept crayons made in the United States
Diapers (cloth) No Multiple NA
  1. Craigslist
  2. FreeCycle
NA
www.chicago.craigslist.org
www.freecycle.org
Consider selling on Craigslist or FreeCycle
Diapers (disposable) No NA NA NA NA Disposable diapers should be thrown away
Denim No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com
NA
DVDs No Multiple Mail Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
Check Earth911.com for the location nearest to you
Envelopes (including plastic windows) Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Envelopes (Tyvek, FedEx, etc.) No Multiple Drop Off and Mail Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
Check Earth911.com for the location nearest to you
Eyeglasses No Multiple Drop Off and Mail
  1. Earth911.com
  2. Lions Club International
NA
www.earth911.com www.lionsclubs.org/
  • Check Earth911.com for the location nearest to you
  • Check website for the location nearest you
Feminine Hygiene Products No NA NA NA NA  Disposable feminine hygiene products should be thrown away. Explore the suggested websites for reusable alternatives.
Food Containers Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
Accepted plastics include #1-5, 7 (not #6)
Freezers No NA NA NA NA

NA

 

Furniture No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com
NA
Gift Cards, Hotel Keys No Multiple

1) Mail

2) Drop Off

  1. Earthworks
  2. Best Buy
NA
www.bestbuy.com/
  • NA
  • Best Buy has recycling kiosks for gift cards
Glass Bottles and Jars Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
Please remove lids from glass bottles and jars before recycling
Glasses (drinkware and dishware) No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com
Broken glasses (drinkware) or dishes should be thrown away
Golf Balls No Dixon Golf Drop Off Elmhurst Park District, 225 Prospect Ave. Elmhurst IL 60126 630.993.8933
www.dixongolf.com
NA
Grass No NA NA NA NA Compost yard waste, like grass clippings
Hangers No Multiple Drop Off Earth911.com www.earth911.com Many dry cleaners only accept hangers from their store, check before dropping off
Household Appliances  No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Salvation Army
  2. Recycling Information Center
  1. NA
  2. 1.800.YES.1.CAN
    www.salvationarmy.com http://www.aham.org/
  • Working appliances only

     

  • Call the Recycling Information Center for nearby metal recycling facilities that accept appliances
Ink Cartridges No Multiple Drop Off and Mail Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
Check Earth911.com for the location nearest to you
iPods No Multiple Drop Off and Mail Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
Check Earth911.com for the location nearest to you
Junk Mail Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Keys No Keys for Kindness Mail PO Box 201, Pearl River NY, 10965 NA
www.keysforkindness.com
NA
Kitty Litter No NA NA NA NA Kitty litter should be thrown away
Linens No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com

 

www.salvation army.com

NA
Magazines Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Make-up Containers No Origins Drop Off
  1. 111 N. State St, Chicago IL
  2. 845 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL
1.800.ORIGINS
www.origins.com
NA
Mattress and Box Spring No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com
NA

Medicine (prescription and over-the-counter)

No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Chicago Police Area Headquarters:
    • 5101 S. Wentworth Ave., Chicago IL 60609
    • 727 E. 111th St., Chicago IL 60628
    • 2452 W. Belmont Ave, Chicago IL 60618
    • 3151 W. Harrison St., Chicago IL 60612
    • 5555 W. Grand Ave., Chicago IL 60639
  2. Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility (1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago IL 60642)
NA
  • Open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • Hours: Tu 7-noon; Th 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am - 3 pm
Monitors (computers and televisions) No Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility Drop Off 1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago IL 60642 NA
www.cityofchicago.org/hccrf
Hours: Tu 7-noon; Th 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am - 3 pm
Motor Oil No Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility Drop Off 1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago IL 60642 NA
www.cityofchicago.org/hccrf
Hours: Tu 7-noon; Th 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am - 3 pm
MP3 Players No Multiple Drop Off and Mail Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
Check Earth911.com for the location nearest to you
Newspapers Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Newspaper Sleeves No Multiple Drop Off NA NA Plastic bags, including newspaper sleeves, should be brought to your grocery store or pharmacy for recycling
Notebooks Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
If possible, remove metal spiral binding
Office Paper Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Paint (oil based only) No Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility Drop Off 1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago IL 60642 NA
www.cityofchicago.org/hccrf
Hours: Tu 7-noon; Th 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am - 3 pm
Paint (latex) No Earth Paints Collection Systems  Drop Off Multiple NA
www.earthpaintscs.com
Check their website for recycling fees
Paper Towels (used) No NA NA NA NA Used paper towels should be thrown away. If lightly used, they can be composted.
Paper Towel Tolls Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Pens and Pencils No NA NA NA NA Broken or old pens and pencils should be thrown away
Pesticides No Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility Drop Off 1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago IL 60642 NA
www.cityofchicago.org/
Hours: Tu 7-noon; Th 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am - 3 pm
Phone Books Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Phone (including cordless) No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com

 

www.salvationarmy.com

Donate only working phones. Broken phones should be thrown away
Photographs No NA NA NA NA Unwanted photographs should be thrown away
Plastics #1-5, 7 Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Plastic #6 or unnumbered No NA NA NA NA #6 plastics and unnumbered plastics should be thrown away
Plastic Bags (for residents) No Multiple Drop Off PlasticBag Recycling.org NA Plastic shopping bags can be recycled at grocery stores, pharmacy's and many big box retailers
Plastic Bags (for businesses) No NA Drop Off and Mail
  1. PlasticBag Recycling.org
  2. Better Containers, 530 Hyde Park, Hillside, IL 60162
  3. G2 Revolution, 650 E. Algonquin Road, Suite 401, Schaumburg, IL 60173-3846
    1. NA

 

    1. 800.831.6049

 

  1. 847.925. 9800

www.bettercontainers.com/

 


www.g2rev.com/

NA
Plastic Bottle Caps Yes (see notes) NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org

 

www.aveda.com

Bottle caps are only recyclable at some of the city's sorting facilities. To ensure caps are recycled, take them to a nearby Aveda store.
Plastic Storage Bags and Plastic Wrap No NA NA NA NA Plastic storage bags and wrap should be thrown away after use
Pots and Pans No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com
NA
Qtips No NA NA NA NA Qtips and other health products should be thrown away after use.
Razors No Preserve Products Mail NA NA
www.preserve

 

products.com

Purchase Preserve razors and mail back later. The handles are made from recycled #5 plastic and made into new products.
Refrigerators No NA NA NA

NA

NA
Reusable Bags No ChicoBag Mail C/O Zero Waste Program, 349 Huss Drive, Chico, CA 95928 NA
www.chicobag.com/
For broken or no longer usable reusable bags
Rugs No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com
NA
Sanitary Products No NA NA NA NA Sanitary products, like wipes, feminine products, diapers and incontinence pads, facial and toilet tissue, should be thrown away after use.
Shoes No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
  3. Soles4Souls
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com

www.soles4souls.org

NA
Shopping Bags (paper) Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Shopping Bags (plastic)  No Multiple Drop Off NA NA All Chicago grocery stores are required to accept plastic bags for recycling.  Bags from other stores are also accepted.
Silverware (metal) No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
 
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com
NA
Silverware (plastic) No NA NA NA NA Plastic silverware can be rinsed and reused or thrown away after use
Snackbag Liners No NA NA NA NA Plastic snackbag liners should be thrown away
Spray Paint Cans (empty) Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Spray Paint Cans (not empty) No NA NA NA NA Consider donating unused spray paint to a school or local art program
Steel Cans Yes NA NA NA NA
Styrofoam (#6 Foam) No Dart Drop Off 310 Evergreen Drive, North Aurora, IL NA
www.dart.biz/

Accept all foam except packing peanuts

Check with your closest pack-and-ship store (Mailboxes Etc., UPS) to drop off clean Styrofoam peanuts for reuse

Televisions (working or broken; LCD, Plasma, and CRT) No Household Chemicals & Computer Recycling Facility Drop Off 1150 N. North Branch St., Chicago IL 60642 NA
www.cityofchicago.org/hccrf
Hours: Tuesday 7am-noon; Thursdays 2-7pm, 1st Saturday of the month 8am-3pm
Tennis Balls No Rebounces Mail NA NA
www.rebounces.com
NA
Textbooks No Reading Tree: Books for Charity Drop Off NA NA
www.readingtree.org/
NA
Textiles (household) No USAgain Drop Off NA NA
www.usagain.com/
NA
Tires No Multiple Drop Off Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
Some locations may charge per tire -call before making the trip
Toilet Paper Rolls Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
NA
Toothbrushes No Preserve Products Mail NA NA
www.preserveproducts.com
Purchase Preserve toothbrushes and mail back later. The handles are made from recycled yogurt containers and made into new products.
Toys No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com
NA
Umbrellas No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com
Working umbrellas only
Video Tapes No Multiple Drop Off and Mail Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
Check Earth911.com for the location nearest to you
Vehicles No Multiple Mail Earth911.com NA
www.earth911.com
Working vehicles can be donated
Waterbottles (reusable) No Multiple Drop Off
  1. Goodwill
  2. Salvation Army
NA
www.goodwill.com www.salvationarmy.com
NA
Wipes and Sponges No NA NA NA NA Wipes and sponges should be thrown away after use
Wrapping Paper Yes NA NA NA NA
www.chicagorecycles.org
Be sure to remove bows, tags, and ribbon
Zippered Bags No NA NA NA NA Zippered bags can be reused and thrown away
Zippers No NA NA NA NA Zippers should be thrown away

 

Is the information above incorrect?
Please let us know by sending an email to  StreetsAndSan@cityofchicago.org

 

Back to Chicago Recycling Guide: A-Z

Material

Is Material accepted in Blue Cart or Drop-Off? Other Recycling Outlet Mail or Drop-Off Program Location Address Location Phone Location Website

Location Details and Restrictions

Aerosol cans Yes           Must be empty
Aluminum Yes           Accepted aluminum includes: cans, clean tin foil, pie tins