A guide to recycling in Dallas

Program overview
When to recycle
Where recycling ends up
Recycling centers
Recycling containers
Electronics and batteries
Fun stats

Program overview

“Too Good To Throw Away” is the name of Dallas’s single-stream recycling program, accepting plastic, glass, metal, paper, and cardboard. Recycling is picked up at the curb for those with recycling roll carts, while apartment and condo residents may take recyclables to one of the City’s designated neighborhood drop-off sites.

Who collects recycling?

The City of Dallas Sanitation Services department provides curbside residential recycling collection.

When to recycle
Where recycling ends up

Some recyclables, such as plastics, are sold to a processor, to help offset collection costs, while others are used by the city as an affordable alternative to other materials. Recycled glass, for example, can be crushed and used as a filler in expensive gravel applications.

Recycling drop-off sites

Items accepted through the City of Dallas’ curbside collection program can also be recycled at various collection sites. Most locations are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Find a location near you here.

For those who live in multi-family buildings, blue collection bags can be used to transport recyclables, and are provided free at all city libraries and recreation centers. Find locations here.

Recycling containers

For curbside recycling, the city provides residences with a either a 48-, 64-, or 96-gallon blue polyethylene resin cart with wheels. Residents can call 311 to receive a cart.

recycling in dallas

The three cart options. From CBS DFW.

Paper and cardboard

Materials accepted in curbside collection:

  • Paper food and beverage cartons
  • Detergent boxes
  • Paper egg cartons
    Folded corrugated boxes
  • Newspapers, magazines and catalogs
  • Paperback books
  • Phone books

Not accepted:

  • Hardback books
  • Pizza boxes or food-contaminated boxes

Materials accepted in curbside collection: All plastics numbered 1 through 5 and 7, including-

  • Butter
  • Cat litter
  • Cooking oil
  • Condiments
  • Milk, juice and other beverages
  • Detergent
  • Yogurt

Not accepted:

  • Plastic bags (Plastic bags numbered 2 and 4 are accepted at various retailers. Find locations here.)
  • Styrofoam (numbered 6)

Materials accepted in curbside collection: Glass bottles, jars and any food-grade glass containers. Please place any broken glass in a paper bag before placing it in your blue cart or bag.

Not accepted:

  • Window glass
  • Light bulbs
  • Ceramics
  • Mirrors
  • Pyrex
  • Fiberglass

Materials accepted in curbside collection:

  • Tin, aluminum and steel containers and cans
  • Empty aerosol cans

Not accepted:

  • Aluminum foil
  • Pie plates
  • Pesticide cans
  • Metal electronic or appliance parts
  • Metal coat hangers (can be recycled at many dry cleaners)

The City of Dallas does not recycle Styrofoam peanuts or EPS (expanded polystyrene), which is the molded Styrofoam used in packaging for electronics and other delicate items. These items can be recycled at many packaging stores. Find locations here.


All Dallas residents can recycle the following electronics at the city’s four drop-off e-cycling locations. Find their hours and locations here.

Accepted materials:

  • Computers and computer equipment
  • TVs
  • Cell phones
  • Game systems
  • DVD and CD players and other small electronics

Dallas residents can also recycle computers and cell phones at the Sanitation Service’s Home Chemical Collection Center.

In addition, the Texas Computer-Equipment Recycling Law requires computer equipment manufacturers to provide free collection and recycling for their brand’s monitors, hard drives, laptops, keyboards and other related equipment that is purchased for personal use. Directions on how to recycle various brands can be found here.


All batteries are accepted at the Sanitation Service’s Home Chemical Collection Center or during Dallas Area Household Hazardous Waste Network collection events.

In addition, some retailers such as Radio Shack, Lowe’s and Home Depot accept rechargeable batteries for recycling. Automotive businesses are required to accept lead-acid batteries for recycling when a customer purchases a new battery.


Several local sites accept household appliances for recycling.


Recycle Naturally is the City’s composting initiative to promote and increase backyard composting. The effort provides training classes in composting for Dallas residents in the basics of backyard composting, and upon completion of the class, residents receive a free composting bin (while supplies last).

Miscellaneous household waste

The items listed below can be disposed of at the Sanitation Service’s Home Chemical Collection Center or during Dallas Area Household Hazardous Waste Network collection events:

Accepted materials:

  • Household cleaners and chemicals
  • Paint
  • Lawn and garden chemicals
  • Aerosol sprays
  • Pool chemicals
  • Craft and hobby supplies
  • All batteries
  • Automotive fluids and oil filters
  • Fluorescent light tubes

Not accepted:

  • Containers larger than 5 gallons
  • Explosives and ammunition
  • Smoke detectors
  • Appliances, TVs or microwaves
  • Prescription drugs and other medicines


Mercury-switch thermostats can be recycled for free at various collection sites.

Athletic shoes

Gently used athletic shoes (without metal cleats) can be donated at various sites through a City of Dallas Waste Diversion Team program with World Wear Project. Shoes are repaired, sorted, then shipped to third-world countries. Collection locations can be found here.

Fun stats

In the 2012 fiscal year the City:

  • Collected 51,893.13 tons of recyclables from residents
  • Diverted over 70,539.06 tons of recyclable or reusable material from the landfill
  • Saved $1,859,503.83 of landfill space
Source URLs

Time to Recycle