Residential Recycling Guide

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Use this guide to help decide which cart to put your unwanted materials into for curbside pickup.  And be sure to follow City Curbside Collection Guidelines when placing your carts out for service each week.

Recyclable WASTE
Recyclable ORGANIC Waste Non-Recyclable Waste Special Handling
Recycling Cart Yard Waste Cart Trash Cart Do Not Dispose Curbside

- Aluminum cans
- Beverage cans
- Books (hard & soft cover)
- Brochures
- Cardboard cereal boxes
- Clothes hangers (all types except flocked hangers)
- Computer paper
- Coupons
- Egg cartons (paper/cardboard)
- Envelopes (windows OK)
- Food cans (empty)
- Glass bottles and jars (lids & labels okay - no need to rinse if completely empty)
- Glass cosmetic bottles
- Junk mail
- Laundry bottles
- Ledger paper
- Magazines
- Metal Items & Scrap (pots, pans, etc. not suitable for donation- no electronic items)
- Milk/juice cartons
- Newspaper
- Paper
- Paper/cardboard tubes (paper towel, etc.)
- Phone books
- Pizza boxes (clean)
- Plastics (see examples below)*
- Soup/broth cans & cartons (labels okay)
- Tin cans
- Tissue boxes
- Wine bottles & cartons
- Wrapping paper

- Branches

- Flowers

- Food Waste

- Food-soiled paper
- Grass
- Hay
- Leaves
- Plants
- Scrap lumber (untreated, unpainted)
- Yard Trimmings


- Aerosol cans (empty)

- Animal waste
- Animal waste bags
- Bubble wrap packaging+
-  CDs & DVDs (both disks and plastic cases)
- Carbon paper
- Carpet
- Cat litter
- Ceramic pottery, mugs, dishes
- Cigarette butts

- Deceased animals (up to 10 lbs.)
- Dishes
- Disposable diapers
- Egg cartons (polystyrene foam)
- Flooring
- Garden Hoses
- Glass Dishes
- Glass window panes
- Mirrors
- Napkins

- Old Clothes (not suitable for donation)
- Palm / yucca fronds
- Paper towels
- Soiled paper plates
- Polystyrene foam
- Polystyrene foam packing peanuts+
- Tissue
- Toothpaste tubes

- VCR tapes
- Waxed paper

- Plastic bags (all types)**

- Appliances

- Automobiles
- Compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs)
- Long fluorescent tubes
- Batteries
- Electronic waste (computers, monitors, cell phones)
- Fertilizers
- Fire extinguishers
- Furniture (damaged / not suitable for donation)
- Gasoline
- Helium tanks
- Household hazardous waste (cleaners, oil, paint)

- Marine Flares
- Mattresses
- Medical needles
- Mercury-containing items
- Paint
- Pesticides
- Pool chemicals
- Printer cartridges
- Propane tanks
- Pharmaceuticals

- Road Flares
- Tires
- Used frying oil

* Recycling Plastics

The following types of plastics can be recycled in Thousand Oaks. Lids and labels can be kept on containers. Please rinse containers.

  • Water bottles, soft drink bottles, salad dressing bottles; peanut butter containers.
  • Milk and juice containers, squeezable bottles such as honey and ketchup; yogurt and margarine tubs
  • Cosmetic, shampoo, mouthwash bottles, dish and laundry containers and cleanser bottles

** Recycling Plastic Bags

Please do NOT place plastic bags, plastic film or plastic wrap in your recycling. These items get caught in the recycling machinery and cause expensive repairs and downtime. They belong in the TRASH. You are encouraged to use re-usable alternatives. Plastic bags can be recycled in the drop boxes located in most grocery stores (including Walmart, Target and Kohls stores).

+ Donate Packaging Materials

Many postal service retailers (UPS Store, Post Net, etc.) will accept donations of clean bubble wrap and polystyrene packing peanuts. Contact local retailers to confirm acceptance of donated items before bringing them for donation.

Have Excess Paper and Cardboard to Recycle?

Used moving boxes are in high demand, so we encourage residents to give them away on NextDoor, Freecycle, Craigslist, or local Facebook groups. New residents who just moved into a new home can call their trash hauler to ask them to a free, one-time pickup of excess cardboard that you bundle together and place next to your trash cart on trash day. Residents can also order a free bulky item pickup.

Have Larger Pieces of Metal to Recycle?

If metal items do not fit in your home recycling bin, you can bring it to any of the following recycling facilities:
Camarillo Recycling in Camarillo
SA Recycling in Oxnard
Standard Industries in Ventura
We advise that you call first to verify the items are accepted. You can also take it to Free Landfill Day which is twice per year for Thousand Oaks residents. Residents can also order a free bulky item pickup.  

Something missing?

If you're wondering about something that's not on the list above, check out Athens Services' What Goes Where Recycling Guide to find out what waste items go where. Just type in any unwanted item and it will tell you what to do with it. You can also e-mail questions to