- Public Works
- Recycling - Solid Waste
- A to Z Disposal Guide
A to Z Disposal Guide
- If you do not find an item on the list below, or you have additional questions, contact the Town of Amherst’s recycling coordinator or visit the Transfer Station.
- If bringing items to the Amherst Transfer Station is not an option, waste haulers will often pick up bulky items for a fee. Call your contracted hauler for cost estimates and advance arrangements.
- Earth911.com offers a database of drop-off locations for items that can't go in the recycling bin searchable by zip code.
- Beyond the Bin is an online guide for where to bring items in MA that can't go in the recycling bin.
- Facilitating the reuse of an item is often a better choice than disposal. Organizations such as GOODWILL and SALVATION ARMY accept a wide range of reusable items. FreeCycle.org is a free, regional service that connects people looking for free, useful materials with those looking to shed them.
- Click here for a list of additional recycling/reuse options provided by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection
- The Springfield Materials Recycling Facility (MRF) is a local processing facility that sorts and bales Pioneer Valley paper, glass, plastic and metal containers before selling them to industries which use the recyclables as feedstock in their manufacturing process. They have excellent information on what and how to recycle.
Acrylic-based Paints- See Paints.
Adhesives - Non-toxic household adhesives such as children’s craft glues may be disposed of in your regular trash. In most cases disposal information can be found on the adhesive container’s label. If you are unsure, or the adhesive contains toxic materials, it should be taken to the Transfer Station during the annual Household Hazardous Waste Day collection event.
Aerosol cans - Some empty aerosol cans are recyclable, while others are not. Which category cans belong in is based on the original contents:
- Non-toxic products- Aerosol cans from non-toxic household products (e.g. sun block, hair spray, saving cream, deodorant, cooking spray, whipped cream, spray starch, air freshener) may be recycled with other containers if they are empty and lids are removed. Do not remove nozzles, puncture, pierce, or flatten the cans.
- Toxic products--Aerosol cans containing paint or hazardous materials (lubricants, pesticides, cleaning products) are accepted at the annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection. Cans that are completely empty may be disposed of in your household trash.
Air Conditioners - Window air conditioners are accepted at the Transfer Station. Fees apply.
Alkaline Batteries - See Batteries.
Aluminum - Moderately clean aluminum foil and aluminum serving containers (pie plates, casserole dishes) are accepted along with aluminum beverage cans in your container recycling mix. If the aluminum is very greasy or dirty and you are not able to wash it, please throw it away with household trash. Other aluminum objects (e.g. old cookware) are accepted at the Transfer Station as scrap metal. Fees may apply.
Ammonia - Ammonia and ammonia products are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Ammunition -Do not throw any munitions in the trash. Many are unstable when exposed to heat, so keep them cool. Try giving the munitions away to a relative, friend, local rod and gun club, or sporting goods store. Some sporting goods stores participate in lead reclamation projects and they will accept lead shot. If you are aware of unused ammunition which poses a public safety concern, contact your local Police Department.
Antifreeze - While extremely toxic, antifreeze has a sweet smell and its taste can appeal to children, pets and wild animals. Make sure it is stored securely. It is so accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Appliances - Major household appliances (also known as “white goods”) are accepted at the Transfer Station. A disposal fee applies. To avoid accidents with animals and children, always remove doors of unused refrigerators.
Art/Hobby Paint - Art and Hobby paints are accepted during the annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection event.
Asbestos - Please contact the recycling coordinator at the Department of Public Works.
Asphalt - The Transfer Station accepts asphalt and asphalt shingles. A fee (based on weight) applies.
Asphalt Patch/Repair & Sealant Products - Asphalt maintenance products are accepted during the annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection event.
Automobiles (and other vehicles) - Search for “auto wreckers and salvage” on-line or donate your unwanted car to a charitable organization (tax deductable). Most organizations will pick up your car for free. Local charities and religious organizations may accept them as well. Here are some organizations that accept car (and other vehicle) donations:
Automotive Batteries - See Batteries.
Automotive Oil - See Motor Oil. TOP
Balloon Tanks - See Helium Tanks.
Batteries - Many batteries contain hazardous metals and require special disposal. Alternate regional disposal sites can be identified via a search on www.Earth911.org.
- Alkaline (single-use household) - As of 1994, household batteries (9-volt, D, C, AAA, AA, etc.) no longer contain mercury. The State of Massachusetts considers these alkaline batteries only a corrosive hazard and permits disposal in your normal household trash. Alkaline batteries are accepted at the Transfer Station at no charge.
- Auto - Automotive batteries contain sulfuric acid and should be disposed of promptly and properly. Most service stations will accept old auto batteries, especially if you’ve purchased a new 1 from them. The Transfer Station will accept auto batteries at no charge during normal hours of operation.
- Lithium & “Button” - Lithium, and small button-shaped batteries (typically Nickel Cadmium) used in hearing aids, watches, cameras, calculators, and electronic toys contain toxic metals and should NOT be thrown in household trash. The popularity of singing greeting cards and inexpensive battery-powered toys increases toxic risk to the environment. Please remove all batteries from cards and toys and make sure that they are disposed of properly. Lithium and button batteries are accepted (no charge) at The Transfer Station and the Department of Public Works office (Route 116 South).
- Rechargeable - Rechargeable batteries, such as those used for cellular phones, appliances, power tools, and camcorders contain toxic metals and should NOT be thrown in household trash. Many Radio Shack stores and national hardware chains have free recycling programs for rechargeable batteries. The Transfer Station also accepts rechargeable batteries at no charge.
Bicycles - When the useful life of a bicycle is over, it can be recycled as scrap metal. Bicycles at this stage may be taken to the Transfer Station (fees may apply). Useful bikes can be donated to charitable organizations (such as Bikes Not Bombs and the Massachusetts Bicycle Coalition) or given away via a FreeCycle post (www.freecycle.org).
Books - Please evaluate books carefully prior to donation. With very few exceptions, mildewed and water or insect-damaged books hold little value to anyone. Similarly, encyclopedia sets and outdated textbooks and medical/scientific manuals hold little value (obsolete information is not useful to anyone). We recommend that books in these categories be recycled. Paperback and phone books may be recycled as-is, while covers must be removed from hardbound books before recycling.
There are several local options for donation of books in good condition:
- School and public libraries will happily take many contemporary books in excellent condition. Those that don’t make the cut may be donated to Friends of the Library organizations which donate book sale proceeds to local libraries.
- Reader to Reader, a non-profit organization founded by an Amherst resident, distributes meaningful used books nationally and internationally to school libraries. In some situations pick-ups can be arranged at no charge. Call (413) 256-8595 or visit http://www.readertoreader.org.
- The League of Women Voters holds an annual spring used book sale. Collection boxes can be found sprinkled about Town in March and April.
- The Book Shed at the Transfer Station accepts unwanted books in good condition for re-use by other residents (Vehicle Sticker required).
- Someone may need books for an art or craft project, so posting them on the local FreeCycle network is also an option (www.freecycle.org).
- SALVATION ARMY
Depending on the condition, popularity and value of the books you wish to offload, it may be possible to sell them. Several used book stores are sprinkled around the Pioneer Valley and are easily located via Yellow Pages or Internet searches.
Bottles - Most household bottles are accepted in the household container recycling mix if they are smaller than 2 gallons in size and have not contained toxic material.
Box Springs - Box springs and mattresses are accepted at the Transfer Station (fees apply). TOP
Bricks - The Transfer Station accepts bricks and brick debris. A fee (based on weight) applies.
Brush - Debris from trees, shrubs, and bushes, 12 inches or less in diameter and less than 4 feet in length are accepted at the Transfer Station. Fees apply.
Bug Sprays/Repellants - See Insecticides.
Building/Remodeling Materials - The Eco-building Bargains in Springfield accepts donations of unwanted, quality home improvement materials (e.g. doors, cabinets, plumbing, lighting, electrical) and sells them to the public at low prices.
Cabinets - Wooden cabinets in good condition may be accepted at Eco-building Bargains for reuse (call first). They are also accepted at the Transfer Station as construction and demolition waste (fees apply).
Cans - Most steel, tin, and aluminum cans are accepted as recyclable material at the Transfer Station if they are smaller than 2 gallons in size and have not contained toxic material. See alsoAerosol Cans.
Carbon Monoxide Detectors - Carbon monoxide detectors do not contain any radioactive or hazardous materials, and may be disposed of in your household trash. They are not recyclable.
Cardboard - Corrugated cardboard and boxboard (from crackers, cereal, etc.) are accepted curbside in your household paper recycling mix. If you own a Vehicle Sticker you may also take it to the Transfer Station.
Carpeting and Rugs - Most carpeting is made of recycled material and is itself recyclable. At this time, collection and transportation challenges make recycling viability difficult, but the Commonwealth is targeting more recycling opportunities in the future. In the meantime, rugs and carpeting are accepted at the Transfer Station as municipal waste (fees apply).
Cartons and Drink Boxes - Paper “tent-top” cartons, such as those used for dairy and juice products, can be placed in your mixed container recycling, as well as the box-shaped cartons used for soups, soy milk, and single servings of juice. Rinse and flatten containers and discard straws, plastic caps and spout may stay. Please note that drink pouches (flexible, silvery) are not recyclable.
Catalogs - See Junk Mail.
Cell Phones - Cell phones can contain lead, mercury, cadmium, arsenic, and other toxic substances, which could find their way into the air or water supply if disposed of in the trash. Fortunately they can be both recycled and re-used. At a market price of over 2 dollars a phone, many non-profit organizations collect them as a fundraising activity. Local collection sites include the Amherst Senior Center (Bangs Center), the Transfer Station and the Amherst V.F.W.
CFLs - See Compact Fluorescent Lamps. TOP
Christmas Trees - Artificial trees must be disposed of in regular household trash. Real trees are banned from Massachusetts landfills, and are typically composted. You may bring cut Christmas trees to the Transfer Station at no charge (Vehicle Sticker not required). Trees must be tinsel, light and decoration-free and cut into pieces no greater than 4 feet wide or high. Wreaths should be disposed of with regular trash due to contamination from metal and other intertwined objects unless they can be dismantled and disposed of as brush (a fee may apply).
Chlorine - Chlorine products (household and pool variety) are accepted during the annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection event.
Clothing - As with books, it is helpful to thoughtfully review used clothing before donation. Clean, dry clothing that is too worn, torn or stained can be used in your household as rags, and many animal shelters will accept old sheets, blankets, pillowcases, bedspreads, throw rugs and towels for reuse.
Locally, clothing may be donated to The Amherst Survival Center, Goodwill and The Salvation Army. The Hospice Shop of the Fisher Home accepts donations of adult clothing only. Collection bins are often found in shopping center parking lots. Contemporary and vintage clothing can also be donated to religious organizations in anticipation of fundraising tag sales. A Salvation Army collection bin is located at the Transfer Station.
Coat Hangers - Many local dry cleaners will accept wire hangers. They can also be donated to charitable clothing stores, or recycled (at the Transfer Station) as scrap metal. Plastic hangers are not recyclable at this time. FreeCycle is a good reuse option for plastic hangers; otherwise they may be disposed of in household trash.
Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs) - CFLs are the newer, energy efficient light bulbs that come in a variety of shapes and sizes. They require special handling because they contain a small amount of mercury gas. Free CFL recycling is offered locally at Ace Hardware, Home Depot, Lowes and Whole Foods. They are also accepted at the Transfer Station for a small fee. Alternate regional disposal sites can be identified via a search on www.Earth911.org.
Computers & Computer Equipment - Computer manufacturers and retailers have begun to take responsibility for the safe end-of-life disposal of their products. Manufacturers, including Apple, Dell, Gateway, Hewlett-Packard, Panasonic, Sony and Toshiba, offer electronic recycling programs (visit websites). Locally, Best Buy and Staples both have programs that accept computer equipment at low or no cost. The Transfer Station accepts keyboards, monitors, printers, scanners, and CPUs. Various toxic materials, such as lead, must be removed before the units can be put into the landfill, so fees apply. Be sure to remove confidential information from the hard drive before donation.
Concrete - The Transfer Station accepts concrete chunks. A (weight-based) fee applies.
Construction and Demolition Debris - Household construction items (e.g. cabinetry, and plumbing/lighting fixtures) in good working condition may be accepted at Eco-building Bargains for reuse (call first). Waste construction and demolition debris is accepted at the Transfer Station during normal hours of operation. A (weight-based) fee applies, and wood must be cut into lengths no longer than 4 feet.
Cooking Oil - Vegetable oil has become more of a commodity as more people drive veggie oil powered vehicles. Collection and distribution remain challenging, but there are a few pioneers that offer options. Always contact them before a visit to determine if your oil fits their requirements. You may also place cooking oil in a capped container (e.g. a drink or detergent bottle) and place it in your household trash. Oil sludge residue from vegetable powered vehicles may also be disposed in this manner.
- Evergreen Motors (Greenfield: 413-772-3131)
- Seven Sisters Auto (Hatfield: 413-247-5077)
- Northampton DPW (413-587-1059)
- ReEnergizer will accept vegetable oil by appointment and provides collection services for large generators (Holyoke: 413- 322-3324 or www.localvegoil.com).
Dehumidifiers - dehumidifiers are accepted at the Transfer Station. Fees apply as freon and other refrigerants must be removed before they can be recycled for scrap metal.
Dishwashers - See Appliances.
Disinfectants - Disinfectants are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Doors - Doors in good working condition may be accepted at Eco-building Bargains for reuse (call first). Doors are also accepted at the Transfer Station. Fees apply.
Drain Cleaners - Drain cleaners are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Drugs - see Medication.
Egg Cartons - Paper, plastic and foam egg cartons are not recyclable. Paper egg cartons can be reused (give to someone who has chickens) or composted. They may be left in the Take it or Leave at the Transfer Station. Vehicle sticker required.
Electronics - Most electronics are accepted at the Transfer Station. Fees apply. See alsoComputers & Computer Equipment.
Electronic Media - GreenDisk.com offers a mail-in option for spare computer cords, cables, boards, chips, and computer peripherals, as well as all kinds of electronic media and their cases (diskettes, zip disks, CDs, CD-Rs, CD-RWs, DVDs, video tapes, audio tapes, game cartridges, DAT, DLT, Beta or Digibeta, and computer tapes). For more information, visit www.greendisk.com.
Engine Degreasers - Engine degreasers are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Explosives - Please contact the Amherst Police Department.
Eyeglasses - Many local opticians collect eyeglasses for reuse. The Lion Club program cleans, repairs, and measures correction, before cataloging in a database and for matching to people in need. You can mail them directly to Lions in Sight, 1404 Lemon Street, Vallejo, CA 94590, or find a local Lions Club at www.lionsclubs.org for drop off. Eyeglasses are not recyclable and should be thrown away if reuse is not an option.
Fertilizers - Fertilizers are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Fire Extinguishers - Read the label on the extinguisher to find special disposal instructions. Handle with great care if it is not empty, as contents are under pressure. Some local fire departments will accept full or partially full tanks for training purposes. Fire Extinguishers are also accepted at the Transfer Station (fees apply).
Flags - For the proper disposal of U.S. flags, contact the American Legion or the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
Flea Killers - Flea products (i.e. shampoos, sprays) are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Fluorescent Bulbs - Fluorescent bulbs contain mercury gas and in some cases liquid mercury, an extremely toxic material. Energy saving household light bulbs with the “Energy Star” certification also fall under this category. Handle carefully to avoid breakage. The Transfer Station accepts fluorescent bulbs (compact and tube-style) for a small fee per bulb.
Freezers - SeeRefrigerators. TOP
Fungicide - Fungicide products are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Furniture - Broken, damaged, and stained furniture is accepted at the Transfer Station during normal hours of operation. Fees will apply. Non-upholstered furniture in good condition may be left at the “Take it or Leave it” shed at the Transfer Station. Donations of furniture in good condition are accepted by several local organizations, most of whom will pick up items directly from your home. Please contact the organization for more information before delivering the furniture.
- The Amherst Survival Center matches client furniture needs with furniture offers throughout the year. The Center also coordinates a bi-annual “Trash to Treasures” fundraising event. Used furniture in good condition is collected and sold inexpensively to the public at a weekend event on the Town Common.
- Goodwill Industries (Hadley, University Drive)
- The Salvation Army (Hadley, Route 9)
Depending on the condition and quality of your furniture you may also be able to sell it to a consignment or furniture store. Search under “Furniture stores-Used.”
Furniture Polish - Furniture polish is accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Gasoline - Gasoline is accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Glass - Most glass food and beverage bottles and jars smaller than 2 gallons in size may be included in your mixed container recycling bin. The Transfer Station accepts recyclable glass at no charge, but all broken glass should be placed in household trash. Household glass items, such as drinking and eye glasses, vases, canning jars, medicine bottles, and baking dishes, may be placed in your regular household trash. Bulky or plate glass items, such as auto, picture and window glass, may be taken to the Transfer Station as construction debris. A disposal fee will apply.
Grass Clippings - See Leaves.
Gypsum Board - See Sheetrock.
Hearing Aids - Remove and recycle the button battery (see Batteries). Once the battery has been removed, the hearing aid may safely be thrown away in your household trash.
Helium Tanks - Because of the flammable nature of helium, tanks may only be recycled when they are completely empty. The most common helium tanks are or the non-refillable variety found in party supply stores. Such tanks provide disposal information on the outside of the box, in the printed instructions, or on company websites (for example www.balloontime.com -navigate to Frequently Asked Questions). Larger, refillable tanks are reused or recycled as scrap metal. Always check first with the organization from which the tank originated, as most businesses will accept the empty tanks back. Completely empty tanks may be taken to the Transfer Station as scrap metal. A disposal fee will apply.
Herbicides - Herbicides are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day. TOP
Hypodermic Needles - Residents of Amherst, Pelham and Shutesbury may purchase sharps containers at the Transfer Station or the Amherst Health Department (by appointment). The price includes disposal by a licensed biohazardous waste transporter. A Transfer Station Vehicle Sticker is not required to participate in this program.
Ink Cartridges (computer) - Printer ink cartridges are reused or recycled by manufacturers and local businesses. Some organizations will pay a small amount for each cartridge. Local schools often collect them as a fundraising activity, or you can take them to the Transfer Station for recycling (proceeds benefit an area school). Cartridges are accepted for recycling at Staples (Hadley) and Ink & Toner Solutions (Northampton).
Insecticides - Insecticides and insect repellants are accepted during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Junk Mail- Most junk mail (including catalogs) can be recycled along with newspapers and office paper. Save energy and resources by reducing junk mail at the source via the following free internet services:
- DirectMail.com - removes your name from commercial mailing lists
- CatalogChoice.org - puts a stop to the delivery of unwanted catalogs
- OptOutPrescreen.com - ends pre-approved credit card and insurance offers
- YellowPagesGoesGreen.org - Removes takes your name from phonebook mailing lists
Kerosene - Kerosene is accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Latex-based Paints - See Paints.
Leaves - Leaves and grass clippings are accepted at the Transfer Station at no charge (Vehicle Sticker required). The Department of Public Works conducts an annual autumn curbside pick-up of bagged leaves. Leaves must be bagged using the Town-approved, 30-gallon biodegradable paper bag. Watch for information in the Amherst Bulletin, on Channel 17 and on the Town website.
Light Bulbs - Old-fashioned incandescent light bulbs are not recyclable and may be thrown away with household trash. Halogen bulbs, fluorescent “tube-style” bulbs and compact fluorescent bulbs (“CFLs”) require special disposal. See Compact Fluorescent Lamps.
Lighter Fluid - Lighter fluid and related products are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Lighting Fixtures - Lighting fixtures in good working condition can be brought to the Eco-Building Bargains (www.restoreonline.org) for reuse. They are accepted for disposal at the Transfer Station (fees apply).
Linseed Oil - Linseed oil is accepted during during the annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection event. See also Paints.
Lithium-Ion Batteries - SeeBatteries. TOP
Magazines - Soft cover magazines and catalogs can be included in your mixed paper recycling bin. Please do not place them in the Transfer Station’s Take It or Leave It shed.
Mattresses - Mattresses are accepted at the Transfer Station (fees apply). Many charities no longer accept mattresses because of the return of the bedbug.
Medical/Infectious waste - See Hypodermic Needles. For questions about other medical or infectious waste, please contact the Health Department or the Recycling coordinator at the Department of Public Works.
Medication - To maintain public safety, disposal of unwanted medication must be handled promptly and carefully. Flushing drugs down the drain is dangerous, as wastewater treatment plants and septic systems are not designed to remove pharmaceuticals before the water is released into the environment. Burning unwanted medications discharges dioxins and other serious air pollutants unless it is done under highly controlled conditions. Here are the best options for unwanted medication disposal:
- The Amherst Police station has a collection bin for unwanted prescription and non-prescription medications in pill form only. Veterinary pills are also acceptable.
- Community medication collection events are held periodically. Contact your recycling coordinator or the health or police department to inquire about future collection events.
- A less preferable option is to carefully dispose of them in your household trash using the following procedure:
- Keep all medications in their original packaging, but remove -or obscure-personal information from the labels that could be used to obtain refills;
- Render them unattractive to children, pets and thieves by adding a small amount of water or alcohol (if in dry form) or by pouring in salt or sand (if in liquid form);
- Place them in 2 layers of sealed plastic bags; and
- Conceal the bag in your household trash.
Mercury - Mercury is highly toxic and should not be thrown out in the trash in any form. It comes in several forms, including liquid (older thermometers & wall mounted thermostats) and gas (all fluorescent bulbs-even those with green tips). Mercury is not hazardous as long as it is kept in a sealed environment, so wrap items carefully in sealable plastic bags and handle them carefully to avoid breakage. The Transfer Station accepts most items containing mercury at no charge. For information about handling broken fluorescent bulbs, CFLs and mercury spills, visit www.epa.gov/mercury/spills. See alsoCompact Fluorescent Bulbs and Thermostats and Thermometers.
Metal Polish - Metal polishes are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Moth Balls - Moth balls are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Motor Oil and Filters - Motor oil is accepted at the Transfer Station, and used oil filters are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Needles, Syringes, and other “Sharps” - See Hypodermic Needles. TOP
Newspapers - Clean newspapers, their inserts, may be included with your mixed paper recycling. Recyclable paper of all kinds is accepted at the Transfer Station.
Nickel Cadmium Batteries (NiCd or NiCad) - See Batteries.
Oil - See Cooking Oil, Automotive Oil, Linseed Oil or Wood Oil.
Oil-based Paints - See Paints.
Oven Cleaner - Oven cleaning products are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Packing Peanuts - See Styrofoam
Paints - Paint disposal procedures are determined by paint type. Please keep paints in their original containers, and do not consolidate or mix them. Lead and oil-based paints and paint in aerosol cans are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day. Acrylic/latex paints are only hazardous in their liquid form. Local hardware stores sell paint hardener. Once completely hardened the paint may be placed in household trash. To avoid misunderstanding, alert your contracted waste hauler that the latex/acrylic paint in your trash has been hardened. Please note:
- Do NOT place wet paint of any kind: 1) into the trash; 2) onto the ground; or 3) down a drain.
- Small amounts of latex paint can be safely disposed of in household trash by first mixing it with cat litter, “Speedy-Dri” (available at hardware stores) or some other absorbent material and allowing it to dry completely.
- Metal paint cans containing hardened paint may be disposed of in your household trash, along with plastic paint cans (please notify your waste hauler in advance). Empty and completely dry metal paint cans may be recycled at the Transfer Station as scrap metal.
See also Art/Hobby Paint, Varnishes and Wood Stains.
Paint Stripper - Paint-stripping products are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Paint Thinner - Paint thinners are accepted during the annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day. See also Paints.
Pallets (wood) - Pallets can be reused or recycled as “clean wood waste,” and are accepted at the Transfer Station. Fees apply.
Paper - Office paper, newspaper, junk mail, paperback books, phone books, catalogs, and magazines are recyclable, and are accepted at the Transfer Station. Detailed paper recycling information.
PCBs/Transformers - The Transfer Station accepts ballasts from fluorescent lights during normal hours of operation. Ballasts clearly labeled with “No PCBs” may be discarded as scrap metal. For other types of transformers, please contact the Recycling coordinator at the Department of Public Works.
Pesticides - Pesticides are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day. Occasional government-subsidized farm pesticide collections also occur. Contact the Town recycling coordinator to find if there is a collection in your area in the near future.
Pet Waste - As a protective measure for ground and drinking water, The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection recommends disposing of pet waste in household trash or down the toilet.
Photographic Chemicals - Chemicals used for photographic processing are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day. TOP
Photographs - Because of the plastic content and chemicals, photographs and photographic papers are considered contaminants of recycled paper feedstock. Please dispose of them in your household trash.
Plastic Containers - Many plastic containers can be recycled. The general guideline is that any plastic bottle, tub, or jar less than 2 gallons in size and which did not contain toxic material is acceptable for mixed container recycling. Plastic containers of a 2 gallon or larger size may be thrown away in household trash, although at a certain size threshold, you may have to pay your contracted waste hauler a fee (call ahead). Bulky/large plastic items can also be taken to the Transfer Station for disposal (fees apply).
Plastic Furniture - At this time, plastic furniture is not recyclable. If the item is unbroken and undamaged, you may leave it in the Take It or Leave It shed. If it is in poor condition and will not fit in your normal waste bin/bag, your waste hauler may be willing to pick it up for a fee (call ahead). Alternatively you can take items to the Transfer Station (fees apply).
Plastic Shopping Bags - Plastic shopping bags cannot be placed in recycling bins because they cause major litter problems and clog sorting machinery. They are not accepted or collected at the Transfer Station for the same reasons. Visit www.plasticbagrecycling.org to learn more about plastic bag recycling, including local grocery store collection sites. Plastic shopping bags must be clean and trash, food and paper-free (remove all contents, including receipts).
Plumbing Fixtures - Porcelain plumbing fixtures (sinks, toilets, etc.) in good working condition can be brought to the Eco-Building Bargains for reuse (call first). They are also accepted at the Transfer Station (fees apply).
Pizza Boxes - Pizza boxes that are completely free of food can be recycled. Place them with your mixed paper recycling.
Polyurethane - Polyurethane and other hard-coat varnish-like products are accepted during during the annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection event. See also Paints.
Pool Chemicals - Pool chemicals are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Pressure-Treated Lumber - see Wood.
Printer Cartridges - see Ink Cartridges.
Propane Tanks - Propane tanks are refillable at area businesses. A neighbor or friend may be interested in taking your tank as a spare if it is in working condition. The Transfer Station accepts empty tanks for a small fee, and propane vendors will often accept empty tanks as well.
Rechargeable Batteries - SeeBatteries. TOP
Receipt Paper - Paper receipts from stores and businesses are all recyclable, including NCR (carbon-free) or thermal receipts that produce 2 identical receipts 1 on top of the other. Carbon paper (bluish-black sheets used for typing copies before the advent of copy machines) is not recyclable. Please separate carbon paper sheets from other paper (e.g. handwritten sales receipt books) and dispose of it in your household trash.
Refrigerators - Refrigerators and freezers are accepted at the Transfer Station. Freon and other refrigerants are removed before they are recycled for scrap metal. Remove the door(s) and all contents prior to disposal.
Rodent Killers - Rodent killers are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Roofing Materials - See Asphalt. Liquid forms of roofing tar are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Days. If tar has completely hardened it can be thrown away in your household trash.
Root Killers - Root killing chemicals are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Scrap Metal - Scrap metal is accepted at the Transfer Station. Disposal fees apply.
Septic Tank Cleaners - Septic Tank Cleaning chemicals are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Days.
Sheetrock - Small quantities of sheetrock (aka gypsum wall board) is accepted as construction and demolition waste at the Transfer Station (fees apply).
Sinks - See Plumbing Fixtures.
Smoke Detectors - Contemporary smoke detectors contain a radioactive sensing device, but the radioactivity is so low it is considered harmless. They may be placed in household trash. We recommend that older smoke detectors (manufactured prior to 2000) be mailed back to the manufacturer (consult Internet for addresses).
Solvents/Spot Removers - Spot removers and solvents are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Street Sand - Small amounts of residual sand from street safety efforts in the winter are accepted at the Transfer Station at no charge. A Vehicle Sticker is not required. Fees apply for larger amounts of street sand.
Styrofoam - (also known as expanded polystyrene or EPS) - The Transfer Station accepts clean, white, "block" and "preformed" expanded Polystyrene foam (Styrofoam) for recycling. It must be free of tape and labels. No food trays accepted. The Transfer Station also operates packing "peanut" exchange program. Clean foam packing “peanuts” may be turned in to an attendant. Please place the peanuts in a sealed bag or box prior to handing them in. A vehicle sticker is also required for this program.
This program is currently unavailable at the Transfer Station.
Peanuts may also be brought to mail center stores (e.g. The UPS Store) in plastic bags (no boxes). All other forms of EPS (cups, trays, iceboxes, molded packaging) must be disposed of with household trash.
Television Sets - Television sets contain lead and other toxic materials, especially the cathode ray tube variety (older, bulky, non-flat screen variety). They have been banned from disposal in household trash. The Transfer Station accepts them, and due to the processing required to remove the toxic material, fees apply. Best Buy in Hadley will also accept them for a fee, but under certain circumstances they will give you a gift card in exchange.
Thermal Paper - See Receipt Paper. TOP
Thermometers & Thermostats - Thermometers and thermostats contain mercury and must not be disposed of in household trash. Both the Transfer Station and the Health Department (Bangs Center) accept them at no charge.
Tires - Vehicle tires and rims are accepted at the Transfer Station. Fees will apply.
Toilets - See Plumbing Fixtures.
Toilet Bowl Cleaners - Toilet cleaners are accepted annually during Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Toys - At this time, plastic toys are not recyclable and must be treated as household trash. Before placing toys in the trash, remove all button and rechargeable batteries and dispose of them properly (see Batteries). Clean, unbroken/undamaged toys with all the necessary parts for operation, may be left in the Take It or Leave It shed at the Transfer Station.
Varnishes - Varnishes are accepted during the Town’s annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.
Vegetable Oil - See Cooking Oil.
White Goods - “White goods” is the industry name for major household appliances. See Appliances.
Weed Killers - See Herbicides.
Wire Hangers - Wire hangers are accepted by many dry cleaners in the region. If you have a large quantity they are also accepted at the Transfer Station as scrap metal (fees may apply).
Wood - While all types of wood are accepted at the Transfer Station, different fees apply for “clean wood” (free of paint, stain, glue, and chemicals) and other wood (e.g. painted or pressure-treated wood, pressboard and plywood). Wood must be cut into pieces no longer than 4 feet.
Wood Oils - Oils for wood cleaning and maintenance, such as Danish Oil, are accepted during during the annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection event. See also Paints.
Wood Stains - Products used to stain wood prior to applying varnish or other sealants are accepted during during the annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection event. See also Paints.
X-ray Film - X-ray film is recycled by major generators because if it’s silver content. Bring it to the radiology department of the hospital of origin, or call your local hospital to see if they will accept it from you. Alternatively, you can offer it to an artist or school teacher after removing identifying information. It can also be thrown in household trash.