What Can You Recycle in Dallas?

Here’s some great updated info about what you can (and can’t) recycle in Dallas’ curbside recycling pick-up program, and what to do with the other stuff (from www.onedaydallas.com):

What can be recycled? Just about everything! Think of these four primary types: PAPER, PLASTIC, METAL, and GLASS.  All of the following items may be placed (without sorting) in your blue cart or blue bags:

  • Paper products — Newspapers and inserts, magazines, catalogs, telephone books, mixed office paper, mail and junk mail.
  • Cardboard — Cardboard boxes, chipboard (like cereal and tissue boxes). Flatten all boxes to get more use of your cart.
  • Plastic Containers — Bottles (with or without caps), jars, containers with the triangle label symbol #1, 2, 3,4, 5, 6 and 7 (please rinse!). You’ll find the plastics number in a triangle on the base of the container. If in doubt, put it in the cart – and we’ll sort it out.
  • Metals — Containers made of steel, tin, and aluminum (please rinse!) Used aerosol (non-hazardous) cans are ok too. Sorry, no scrap metal pieces.
  • Glass — Unbroken bottles and jars of any color (please rinse!). Lids are ok.
  • Styrofoam — We’ve just added styrofoam – Food take-out containers ONLY (please rinse!)  [This info was erroneously posted on the city’s website.  Styrofoam is NOT collected for recycling at this time.]


  • Food waste
  • Containers stained with food
  • Light bulbs (see below)
  • Wet paper products
  • Styrofoam (see below)
  • Plastic grocery bags (see below)
  • Waxed paper or cardboard
  • Batteries (see below)
  • Electronics (see below)
  • Plate glass (windows or doors)
  • Coat hangers (see below)
  • Yard waste (grass trimmings, branches, leaves). Please leave these items for the once monthly brush/bulky collection or consider composting!


  • Styrofoam — The City of Dallas can only recycle rinsed Styrofoam food containers. Packaging “peanuts” and other Styrofoam materials should be taken to parcel or shipping businesses for recycling. These can also be thrown into your regular garbage roll cart for disposal.  [Styrofoam may NOT be recycled at this time.]
  • Electronics — The City conducts free E-Waste recycling collection events four (4) times a year. The dates and locations can be found on our website. E-Waste is also accepted during regular operating hours at the Home Chemical Collection Center (HC3) located at 11234 Plano Road.
  • Batteries — Alkaline batteries may be placed in your garbage container. Rechargeable batteries may be taken to various retailers such as Radio Shack, Lowe’s and Home Depot for recycling.
  • Metal Coat Hangers — Currently, the City does not accept coat hangers for recycling. Some local dry cleaners will recycle them. Or bring them to the City’s free quarterly recycling roundups. The dates and locations can be found on our website.
  • Plastic Grocery Bags — The film plastic used for grocery bags and newspaper sleeves (among many other uses) is not recyclable by our processor at this time. However, many grocery stores will take back your grocery bags or you can reuse them yourself. We hope to add this to our list of recyclables in the future.
  • Christmas Trees — Starting December 26, the City of Dallas will accept live, green, or flocked trees from residents for recycling. Beginning January 2, the mulch from recycled trees will be available at select locations. Call 3-1-1 for information regarding tree drop off locations, and where free mulch will be available.

Items that can be taken to the Home Chemical Collection Center at 11234 Plano Road (see website for details):

  • E-Waste Items: Computer equipment (hard-drives, monitors, mouse, modems, printers, etc), televisions and cell phones.
  • Paint: Both water-based (Latex) and oil-based paint
  • Light Bulbs: All types can be taken at the Center. Compact Florescent Light Bulbs (CFLs): If you elect to dispose of these, please place the CFL bulb into two plastic bags and tie them to seal before putting in the garbage cart. For standard incandescent bulbs, please place in plastic bag for safer handling, and then into regular garbage.
  • Hazardous Waste Material: such as chemicals, pesticides, herbicides, cleaners, polishers, etc.