Recycle Right

It’s time to throw out bad recycling habits.

It’s not enough just to recycle. It’s also important to recycle right. In Franklin County, there are six material types that are currently accepted for household recycling.

Paper and cardboard
Paper & Cardboard

Please flatten

Plastic bottles, jugs, and tubs
Plastic Bottles, Jugs & Tubs

Lids and labels accepted

Glass bottles
Glass Bottles & Jars

All colors accepted

Metal cans
Metal Cans

Remove aerosol tips


Rinse and remove lids and straws


Empty & remove straws

Keep items loose; don’t bag them.
Everything else should be reused, donated, composted or disposed of safely.

Find recycling sites near you Test your knowledge

Recycling is easy, don’t make these common mistakes.

Putting unaccepted items into your recycling container can cause delays, put recycling workers at risk, and add expense to recycling.

Avoid putting the following items in with your recycling. Need to dispose of one of these items? We’ve got you covered. Find out what to do:

Recycle & Reuse Search Tool
Plastic Bags
Plastic bags are not recyclable in the curbside or drop-off program containers. They can be recycled at more than 100 retail locations in Franklin County. Use the Recycle and Reuse Search Tool to find a location.
Hoses, wires, chains, clothing, electronics, ‘tanglers’
Tanglers can cause big problems at the recycling facility. Find recycling opportunities by using the Recycle and Reuse Search Tool to look up specific items.
Plastic & foam food containers
Carry out food containers are not accepted in curbside and drop-off recycling because they typically contain grease or food residue or the material the container is made of isn’t accepted.
Light bulbs
Compact fluorescent light bulbs should be recycled at SWACO’s Household Hazardous Waste facility or at the many hardware stores that will accept them. Use the Recycle and Reuse Search Tool below to find a location. Other types of light bulbs can be disposed in your trash.
graphic of upside-down party cup Party Cups
Party cups such as solo style cups are not accepted due to the lack of stable end users for that type of plastic resin known as polystyrene.
Styrofoam is not accepted in curbside and drop-off programs and should be disposed in the trash.
Graphic of plastic cutlery Any plastic item that is not a bottle, jug, tub or cup
Local recycling facilities are designed to accept only certain plastic items such as bottles, jugs, tubs & cups. All other plastic items should be reused, donated or disposed in the trash.
Needles & medical waste
Needles and other medical waste create serious health dangers for recycling workers and should never be included with your household recyclables. These items should be placed in a sharps container and disposed in the trash, or taken to a publicly available safe syringe disposal box that can be found using the Recycle and Reuse Search Tool.
Batteries can cause fires and should never be included with recyclables. Some rechargeable batteries can be recycled at hardware stores. Household batters are accepted at SWACO’s Household Hazardous Waste facility. Alkaline batteries may be put in the trash.
Containers used to store hazardous materials
These items should be placed in your household trash.

Why Recycle?

Annually, Franklin County residents and businesses send over a million tons of material to the Franklin County Landfill. Even more surprising is that nearly 76% of all the material in the landfill could have been recycled or composted.

By taking just a few minutes to recycle right, you help to reduce pollution, contribute to clean water, conserve limited natural resources and reduce central Ohio’s reliance on landfills.

The Recycling Journey

How can you give your recyclables a new life?

Get Started

In Franklin County, curbside recycling service is available to over 96% of households and SWACO operates 50 recycling drop-off locations for residents and businesses without recycling services. To find information about a curbside program or find a drop-off location close to you, see the links below.

Community Curbside Programs SWACO Recycling Drop-off Locations


Have a question about what’s accepted or not accepted for recycling in Franklin County? Visit our Frequently Asked Questions page.

Frequently Asked Questions

What to do with all your other unwanted items

Our Recycling and Reuse Search Tool connects you with hundreds of locations to find the best place to donate, recycle, compost or safely dispose of a wide range of items.

Find a recycling site near you

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