Household Recycling

Recycle Bottles, Jugs, Jars, Cans and Paper/Cardboard at all our Recycling Drop-off Sites. Additional materials MAY be accepted in some curbside recycling programs. Click on each category to learn more. 

Cans

All metal food and beverage cans such as pop, beer, soup, vegetable, and tuna can be recycled. Cans should be emptied, rinsed, and then recycled.

Cartons

Are NOT ACCEPTED at our Recycling Drop Off Sites. If you have curbside recycling at your home, check with your hauler to see if they accept cartons for recycling.

Glass

Glass is now accepted at all of our Recycling Drop-off Sites and in all curbside recycling programs. Not all glass can be recycled. Think food and beverage containers ONLY (pickle jars, beer bottles, etc.)!

Paper & Boxes

Paper, which includes everything from packaging and newspaper to mail, magazines, cartons and cardboard boxes – are all accepted in community recycling curbside programs as well as recycling drop-off sites.

Plastic Bottles, Jugs, & Jars

The shape of the container determines if it is accepted for recycling. We no longer look at the recycling number (#1, #2, etc.) to determine if an item is accepted for recycling. Plastic bottles, jugs, and jars are 100 percent recyclable and accepted in Geauga-Trumbull's recycling drop-off sites bins.

Learn More

All metal food and beverage cans such as pop, beer, soup, vegetable, and tuna can be recycled in your curbside recycling or at any of our recycling drop-off locations. Cans should be emptied, rinsed, and then recycled.

Cans are made from either steel or aluminum. Aluminum cans  put in your curbside recycling are processed and turned back in to new cans and foil that you’ll see on store shelves. Steel cans are recycled into new cans, car parts, and even bridges.

If your community does not offer curbside pick-up, a list of community single stream recycling drop-off locations can be found here.

Aluminum beverage cans may be turned in for cash at a local scrap yard.

Do not include scrap metal, car parts, wire and cord, or other metal objects in your curbside or drop-off recycling. These metal objects are dangerous for the workers and the sorting machinery at the Materials Recovery Facility (MRF or recycling plant). Take the items to a local scrap yard.

Check with your Curbside Recycling Program
NOT ACCEPTED at our Recycling Drop Off Sites.

Cartons, the waxy-coated cardboard packaging for some food and beverage products such as 1/2 gallons of milk, orange juice, and ice cream, can be recycled in SOME curbside recycling programs. If you have curbside recycling at your home, check with your hauler (Republic Services, Waste Management, Ohio Valley Waste, etc.) to see if they accept cartons for recycling. If it is accepted, cartons should be emptied and rinsed. Replace the cap and place in your curbside recycling.

Cartons are mainly made from paperboard, as well as thin layers of plastic and/or aluminum. What you may see as wax on a carton is actually a thin layer of plastic. Some recycling processors have the machines to peel apart these layers and recycle both materials. This is why you must check with your hauler to see if they can accept cartons for recycling. 

The paper fiber contained in cartons is extremely valuable and useful to make new products. The area of the country you live in (and the local mill) determines what your cartons will become. Some mills recycle cartons into tissues, while others use the paper fibers to make office paper. In some cases, they are even being used as one of the materials for wall boards manufacturing. By recycling, your cartons are put back in business as the items you use every day!

Visit the Carton Council for more information

Glass is now accepted at all of our Recycling Drop-off Sites and in all curbside recycling programs. 
Check with your Curbside Recycling Program

Not all glass can be recycled. Think food and beverage containers ONLY (pickle jars, beer bottles, etc.)!

  • Make sure the glass containers are empty. 
  • NO ceramics or heat-resistant glass such as dishware, ovenware (Pyrex), candle jars and decorative items
  • NO drinking glasses or mason jars
  • NO mirrors or window pane glass
  • NO crystal
  • NO light bulbs
  • NO cathode-ray tubes (CRTs) found in some televisions and computer monitors

New glass objects are easier to make from recycled bottles than from raw materials. When you recycle glass, it’s reused to make new bottles and fiberglass that are used every day.
Broken glass can be cleaned up, contained in a paper box or bag and placed in the regular trash.

Paper, which includes everything from packaging and newspaper to mail, magazines, cartons and cardboard boxes – are all accepted in community recycling curbside programs as well as recycling drop-off sites.

Paper is the most recycled material in the U.S. You can recycle many types of mixed paper (paper & boxes) at our recycling drop-off sites or in your curbside recycling.
Mixed paper should be placed loose in a curbside recycling cart or bin. If you must use bags to hold your recycling, choose brown kraft bags instead of plastic bags. Flatten cardboard. When setting mixed paper and boxes at the curb for recycling, make sure it’s empty, clean, dry and out of the rain or weather.

ACCEPTED ITEMS FOR RECYCLING:

  • Newspapers and inserts
  • Magazines and catalogs
  • Junk mail and envelopes (window envelopes are okay)
  • Postcards, greeting cards, coupon packets
  • Phone books
  • Paper grocery and shopping bags
  • Cereal and dry food boxes, shoe boxes, toothpaste or OTC medicine boxes
  • Paper tubes, tissue boxes (toilet paper, paper towels)
  • Office paper, stationery, business cards – any color
  • Paperback books
  • Wrapping paper (including the cardboard tube)
  • Cardboard (flattened)
  • EMPTY pizza boxes

DO NOT Include 

  • Paper cups. Paper cups have a thin layer of plastic coating on them to protect them from condensation. The plastic coating sprayed on paper cups makes the paperboard underneath impossible to recycle in the standard pulp process because the container will not break apart during recycling.
  • Frozen food boxes. Frozen food boxes and freezer cartons have a thin layer of plastic coating on them to preserve them from condensation. The plastic coating sprayed on the frozen food boxes makes the paperboard underneath impossible to recycle in the standard pulp process because the container will not break apart during recycling.
  • Heavily wet or soiled paper and boxes. Try to avoid getting paper and cardboard wet, as it significantly reduces its recyclability. Empty all bottles and jugs and replace the cap before tossing them in your cart or bin so they don’t drain on your paper.
  • Used Napkins, tissues and paper towels. 
  • Food or candy wrappers. Wrappers are typically made of multiple materials. Bits of plastic, aluminum and paper are mixed together, making it difficult and expensive to recover.
  • Photographs. Cannot be recycled due to chemical coatings used in the photo developing process.
  • Shredded paper. Shredded paper is too small to make it through the sorting system at the recycling plant. It’s best to take shredded paper to a mixed paper drop off bin operated by Paper Retriever or River Valley Paper Company. Typically, paper recycling bins are located in the parking lots of schools, places of worship and other nonprofits. Use a paper bag (not plastic) to hold your shredded paper.

The shape of the container determines if it is accepted for recycling. We no longer look at the recycling number (#1, #2, etc.) to determine if an item is accepted for recycling. Plastic bottles, jugs, and jars are 100 percent recyclable and accepted in Geauga-Trumbull’s recycling drop-off sites bins. They are also accepted in ALL curbside programs offered by recycling haulers like Republic Services, Rumpke, Waste Management, Ohio Valley Waste, etc. This includes items like water and soda bottles, shampoo bottles, milk, water and juice jugs, laundry detergent jugs, and peanut butter jars. Bottles, jugs and jars should be emptied and rinsed. Replace the cap and put in your recycling.

Why can’t all plastics be recycled?

Recycling is a business. The recycling processor sorts out materials by shape and type of plastic, bundles it into bales and resells the materials to a manufacturer to be used to make a new product. Recycling processors only accept materials that they can resell. Different recycling processors may accept different materials for recycling because they have a vendor to purchase it after it is processed. ALL local vendors (Waste Management, Republic Services, Rumpke, Ohio Valley Waste, etc.) accept plastic bottles jugs and jars. Some may also accept plastic tubs (i.e. butter, whipped cream, yogurt, etc.). We DO NOT accept tubs at our recycling drop-off sites.

Please support recycling by not putting other types of plastic into your recycling container. If you do, it will cost the recycling hauler or processor additional money to sort it out, increasing future costs to us and you for recycling services. 

Why do plastics have numbers inside recycling symbols if they’re not recyclable?
The numbers on plastic containers are resin codes used by the plastics industry to identify the type of chemicals used to make the container. The codes do not always mean that the item is recyclable, so we no longer look at the numbers on plastics to determine if it goes in curbside recycling.

The shape of the container determines if it is accepted for recycling. Only recycle items shaped like bottles and jugs. If it has a neck (with an opening or a neck that’s more narrow than the body), it can be placed in recycling.

What happens if I place the wrong plastics in my curbside recycling? Can I just throw in any plastic that I want and let someone else figure it out?

No. If there is too much of the wrong materials (contamination) in the curbside recycling mix, there is a chance that the recycling plant will choose to put everything, even the good recycling, in the regular trash. 

DO NOT PLACE ITEMS IN PLASTIC BAGS FOR RECYCLING!

Do not recycle these items:

  • NO plastic bags, wraps and netted produce bags. Bags wrap around the gears, wheels, and machinery at the recycling plant which clogs up the separation process and eventually shuts down the plant. Think of it like an item getting caught in the beater brush of your household vacuum. 
  • NO plastic coffee pods, single-use cups, plates or utensils.
  • NO flower pots. Empty plastic flower pots, packs and flats should be reused or placed in the trash for disposal.
  • NO plastic blister packaging. 
  • NO takeout containers, Styrofoam packaging, Styrofoam cups and Styrofoam food containers. This plastic has been expanded with air and is very fragile. It breaks apart into tiny pieces during the sorting process.
  • NO hangers or plastic toys.
  • NO cat litter containers and 5-gallon buckets. These items are too large to be included. Consider reuse before placing them in the trash.
  • NO empty motor oil and antifreeze jugs. These containers may have residue of the hazardous materials they held and should be placed in the trash, not recycling, for proper disposal.