What are the public recycling materials you can take to a recycling center?

June 28, 2023

Recycling is something that we can all participate in for the health of our communities and the world at large. In most communities around the country, the sight of the big blue bins out at the curb for recycling has become commonplace. Whether you use one of those bins or take materials to your local recycling center, it’s good to know in advance what they can and cannot accept.


Glass is one material that can be recycled over and over, and most recycling centers accept it. Glass bottles, jars, and other food-grade containers can be recycled, but there are some glass items most centers WON’T accept. These would include items like light bulbs, ceramics, mirrors, Pyrex, or fiberglass to name a few.


Most metals can be accepted, but not all. Recycling centers can accept tin, aluminum, and steel cans or containers, but won’t usually take any aluminum foil, empty pesticide canisters, paint cans, metal electronics, or appliance parts.


Electronics contain many different chemical elements that require special handling, but recycling centers can still accept computers, TVs, gaming systems, or other small electronics.


75% of plastics are recyclable, but there are restrictions based on the type of plastic as well as the condition of the items. Soft plastics like grocery bags, plastic wraps, or bubble wraps are not usually accepted, but most other plastics will be accepted at your local center. With plastic food containers,  you have to make sure that they contain no food residue when you turn them in.


While most recycling centers do NOT accept used batteries, many electronics stores will accept them for recycling. Car batteries pose an environmental danger but are the best-recycled product in the US — with reuse rates near 100 percent.


Recycling centers can accept most paper items such as cardboard, newspapers, books, or magazines but other paper items can’t be recycled. Examples of these are products that come into contact with food waste or grease, like pizza boxes, paper towels, napkins, or paper plates, as these items are hard to clean during the recycling process.

Final Words

Recycling is something we can all do for the sake of the planet and our fellow man. The more we recycle, the more we conserve natural resources and control how much waste goes into landfills. If your community doesn’t offer a curbside recycling program, you can and should take your items to your nearest recycling center.

For generations, Okon Recycling has been a trusted leader in the international metal recycling industry.  Founded over 100 years ago, we’ve sustained our company by forming solid partnerships with our clients. We completely understand our clients’ systems and workflow, and we provide customized recycling solutions according to their specific needs. Over the years, we have kept millions of pounds of scrap out of landfills. By doing so, we’re paving the way for a cleaner and more sustainable future for generations to come.  If you would like to learn more about our company and the recycling services we offer, please visit our website or contact us at 214-717-4083.