Where Can I Recycle?

Oil Filter Exchange Events

One used oil filter has an average of 10 fluid ounces of motor oil trapped inside it and more than two million gallons of motor oil from these filters is being improperly disposed of each year in California. Properly recycled used motor oil can be cleaned and used again, ensuring that it doesn’t contaminate local waterways and pollute our environment. If you missed our recent oil filter exchange events, there are more than 300 locations in San Diego County that accept used oil filters from the public for recycling year-round. Many auto parts stores are Certified Collection Centers, meaning they will accept up to five gallons of used motor oil from the public at no charge. Motor oil must not be contaminated with water or other liquids such as antifreeze, solvents or gasoline. Residents that have contaminated motor oil or more than five gallons of clean motor oil must visit a household hazardous waste collection facility.

Curbside Recycling

Curbside RecyclingWith the exception of the City of San Diego, which has its own trash/recycling collection service, all of the cities and the unincorporated county areas have franchised trash and recycling services.  This means that each city has either an exclusive service agreement with one trash/recycling company or, as in the unincorporated county area's case, a number of them. 

All franchised companies operating in San Diego County offer recycling collection services. If you live in a single-family home and don't have a curbside recycling bin, call your local trash company to request one. Be sure to ask about curbside recycling when choosing your trash/recycling company. 

Obtain a list of waste haulers and City contact information here.  

Apartment and Condominium Recycling

If you live in an apartment or condominium complex that does not currently have any recycling opportunities, talk to your property manager about starting a recycling program. Take action to set up recycling at your complex. 

Drop-Off Locations

Drop-off LocationsRecycling drop-off bins are located at parks and recreation centers throughout the City of San Diego and at various locations throughout San Diego County. Residents not served by curbside recycling now have the opportunity to recycle the following materials at their nearest drop-off center:

  • aluminum and steel cans
  • glass food and beverage containers
  • newspaper
  • clean-mixed paper
  • telephone directories
  • cardboard

The list of materials accepted varies at each location. Find a recycling center near you.

All revenue from the sale of recyclables dropped off at parks and recreation centers is returned to the centers to benefit the community where the money was earned.

Since the program was initiated in the City of San Diego, more than 14,000 tons of recyclables have been diverted from landfill disposal and the Environmental Services Department has returned more than $667,000 to the Park and Recreation Centers.

Recycling Centers

From bottles and cans to computers and tires, there is a center that can meet your recycling needs. Find a recycling center nearest you at WasteFreeSD.org, our one stop recycling resource.

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