Go green by recycling your old electronics responsibly

Chances are that someone in your home received a new electronic gadget this holiday season. Hillsborough County Solid Waste reminds residents to recycle obsolete or broken electronics that may contain lead, mercury, and other toxic materials. Electronics should not be thrown out with regular, household garbage.

Items containing a digital display or circuit board, including televisions, computers, laptops, mobile devices, stereo equipment, gaming consoles, VCR/DVD players, and printers, may be safely recycled at sites that will take them for free.

The most generous way to discard working electronics is to inquire about donating them to a local shelter, charity or thrift store. Additionally, many electronics retailers have free recycling programs for both working and broken devices.

Improperly disposed electronics that contain rechargeable batteries can cause fires. All lithium-ion batteries should be disposed at Community Collection Centers or Household Hazardous Waste events. Each lithium-ion battery must be placed in an individual plastic zip-close bag for safe transport. Single-use alkaline batteries (for example A, AA, AAA, C, D, 9-volt) can be disposed is residential curbside trash carts. These batteries cannot be recycled. 

Residents in Hillsborough County, the City of Tampa, and the City of Temple Terrace may recycle limited quantities of household electronics at one of our Community Collection Centers by presenting a photo ID:

The Community Collection Centers are self-unloading facilities open Monday through Saturday from 7:30 a.m. until 5 p.m., with the exception of holidays. They will be closed on Christmas Day and New Year's Day. Disposal of other items accepted at the centers, such as appliances, furniture, lead-acid batteries, and tires, require a photo I.D. and a property tax bill showing the Hillsborough County Solid Waste Disposal Assessment.

Small bathroom and kitchen appliances such as toasters, crock pots, electric skillets, blenders, hair dryers, and curling irons may be discarded in your regular trash. Microwave ovens may be recycled as scrap metal at any Community Collection Center.

Visit the Find a Waste Disposal Facility page to get more information on items accepted, hours, and contact numbers.