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Special Items

Here’s how to deal with items that are not accepted in home collection or at Recycling & Disposal Stations. For more details, use our Look Up Tool.

Not accepted in home garbage or recycling or at Transfer Stations
Accepted in home garbage or at Recycling & Disposal Station with special preparation

Accepted at Recycling & Disposal Station with special preparation (not in home garbage)

Other Collection Services

Not accepted in home garbage or recycling or at Transfer Stations

  • Household chemicals used to maintain cars, wood, pools & spas - Accepted at Household Hazardous Waste Facilities.
  • Fluorescent bulbs - Ask where you buy them and check Take It Back Network.
  • Rechargeable batteries - Ask where you buy them or check Call2recycle for recycling locations near you.
  • Asbestos - Visit the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency website or call (206) 343-8800.
  • Ammunition or fireworks - Call (206) 625-5011 or your local non-emergency police number.
  • Dead animals - Over 15 pounds not accepted as garbage. Call Animal Control at (206) 386-7387.
  • Explosives - Call 911.
  • Furnaces, furnace parts, ducting, or boilers - Contact the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency at (206) 343-8800 for information on heating-system disposal. See the Yellow Pages under "Scrap Metal-Process & Recycle" for salvage operations that may accept asbestos-free heating systems.
  • Medical wastes - Do not dispose of leftover medicines in the garbage or down the drain. Some pharmacies have a medicine-take-back program. For other biomedical wastes, call the Health Department at (206) 205-4394.
  • Radioactive waste - Call the Business Waste Line at (206) 263-8899 or call 911in case of emergency.
  • Sewage - See Sewage Spill Response instructions

Items Requiring Special Preparation

Below are items that are accepted at Recycling & Disposal Stations or in home garbage collection, but require special preparation or additional costs. Follow the links to get ideas for reuse and alternatives to disposal or Look It Up with our handy tool.

Accepted in home garbage or at Recycling & Disposal Station with special preparation

  • Latex paint and latex stain - Dry out small amounts by leaving the lid off. For larger amounts, mix with kitty litter or a commercial paint hardener.
  • Animal waste - Double-bag or seal in leak-proof container.
  • Disposable diapers - Flush excrement down toilet. Put diapers in a bag and place in garbage.
  • Ashes, sawdust, litter and other loose material - Place in a sealed box or bag. Cool ashes before disposal.
  • Kitchen fats, oil and grease - Place in a sealed container.

Accepted at Recycling & Disposal Station with special preparation (not in home garbage)

  • Syringes and other sharps
  • Wood (Untreated wood can be recycled for a fee)
  • Building materials - See ideas for reuse rather than discarding them.
  • Carpet - Accepted as garbage, but better to ask your installer to recycle or donate if usable.
  • Tires - 4 per trip accepted for recycling for a fee.
  • Vehicle batteries – Illegal in the garbage; accepted for recycling at no charge.
  • Metals - Cans, lawnmowers (drain gas and oil first), scrap metal and other items are accepted for recycling. See details.
  • Metal barrels, drums, cans – Accepted for recycling if empty, clean and cut in half; must not have held hazardous material.
  • Contaminated soil - Depending on the contaminant, may be accepted with a Waste Clearance form from the Health Department. Call (206) 263-8528 for information.
  • Rocks, rubble, slabs - Must not exceed 200 pounds and/or 2 cubic feet per piece.

Other Collection Services

  • Beds and furniture - Pay bulky item fee for home pickup or take item to the Recycling & Disposal Station
  • Appliances - Pay Bulky Item fee for home pickup or take item to the Recycling & Disposal Station (extra fee). Note: You may be eligible for Seattle City Light's $30 rebate and free pickup of your older, secondary, working refrigerator.
  • Computers, monitors, and TVs – Call (206) 684-3000 to schedule home pickup for a fee. To recycle for free, visit ecyclewashington.org or call 1(800) RECYCLE.
  • Cell phones, stereos, VCRs, printers, computer mice and keyboards – Ask where you buy them and check the Take It Back Network. To schedule home pickup for a fee, call SPU Customer Service at (206) 684-3000.
  • Used motor oil - Must not be contaminated with solvents or other wastes. For home recycling, set out in tightly sealed 1-gallon container; 2 gallon limit per collection. (Apartment/condo residents contact your manager.) For transfer station recycling, 5 gallon limit and two oil filters per trip accepted.

If items are in good condition, they may also be sold, donated, or given away.

See Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.

Links to other sites

Biomedical Waste Clean up - Local Hazardous Waste Management Program
Sewage Spill Response in King County

Local Hazardous Waste Program site
Take it Back Network
— for cell phones, stereos, VCRs, printers
ecyclewashington.org
- for computers, monitors, and TVs
King County Materials Exchange
- household goods and building materials for sale or give-away