The Complete Guide to Cleveland Recycling & Waste Disposal

Find the Right Cleveland Recycling Center 

Have you ever had something sitting in your garage or basement that you weren’t quite sure what to do with? You figure there’s probably someone out there who can recycle it, or at least take it off your hands, but you don’t even know where to start looking. Fortunately, with our waste & recycling guide you can find a recycler, scrapper or disposer for just about anything in the Cleveland area. From the peaks of Pepper Pike to the shores of Bay Village, you'll find a recycler for everything from tires to mattresses and everything in between. So, do your part and start recycling the junk and debris you have lying around the home. You might just help give a boost to Cuyahoga County's 35% recycling rate. 

Automotive | Construction Materials | Electronics | Paper & Plastic | Household Items


Cars are great for getting around, but they are prone to leaks, breakdowns and all sorts of mechanical mishaps that can leave you with a lot of leftover parts to scrap. Here are some places around town where you can drop off your automotive parts.



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Getting rid of spare tires can be tricky, luckily most cities within Cuyahoga County offer either year-round or special collection windows for scrap tires. Check the Solid Waste Management District’s list of participating cities. If your city does not participate in tire recycling, most local tire dealerships will recycle your old tires when you buy a new set, including these retailers:



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These batteries are no AAA’s. Car batteries contain hazardous chemicals and metals that require proper handling and disposal, and for that reason the state of Ohio bans car batteries from landfills. Fortunately, you can recycle dead car batteries at virtually any auto parts store or scrap yard in the Cleveland area, including these shops:



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Is it time to let go of that old jalopy? Consider giving it away to a good home through a charitable organization. But if it’s on its last legs, you might be better off just scrapping the whole darn thing:


Gasoline, oils, & lubricants

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Gasoline and other automotive fluids are one of those things you don’t want to mess around with, especially when it comes to disposal. Residents in the Cleveland area can drop off old gasoline, oils & lubricants at various locations throughout Cuyahoga County, courtesy of the Solid Waste Management District. Look up your local drop off location here.

Construction Materials

Have a rug lying around that you’d like to make disappear? Or perhaps you have some old bathroom tiles that you don’t want to see go to waste? Well you don’t necessarily have to dump your old construction materials. There are plenty of companies around the Cleveland area that will either recycle or properly dispose of your construction debris.



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Have a small pile of shingles you’ve been promising yourself to get rid of? Give either of these recycling companies a shot:


Scrap Metal

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Have some metal odds and ends lying around? Take them to any of the following locations around Cleveland:



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If you need to get rid of a grab bag of miscellaneous construction debris, consider either of these local construction and landscape suppliers:


Old electronics can either be recycled or donated depending on their condition. So if you have a closet full of old desktops, laptops, LCDs, flip phones, smartphones, and regular old rotary phones (just kidding, no one wants those), consider emptying it out and donating them towards a good cause.


Cell Phones

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Cell phones are as ubiquitous in the waste stream as candy wrappers and trash bags. Yet there is still some value left even in a 4 year old phone. You can drop off your old cell phones at spots throughout the Cleveland area, and you might even make some cash doing it!



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Computers are a marvelous invention, up until they crash, reformat and delete all your personal files. If you’re ready to upgrade, consider taking your old compy to a charitable organization that can reuse it. Or, if it’s beyond saving, you can recycle it through Cuyahoga’s local e-waste collection program:


Refrigerators & Appliances

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Recently upgrade your fridge? Decided to splurge on a new dishwasher? Well big spender, consider giving your old one away for a good cause, or at least get it recycled before you resort to using the scrap yard:


Televisions & Monitors

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Getting nothing but static on the old TV set? Time to take it to a local recycler. But if your TV is still showing a spark of life then you should consider donating it to a local charity instead:

Paper & Plastic

Will that be paper or plastic? Either one is easily recyclable if you know where and how to do it. The city of Cleveland offers single-stream curbside recycling of both plastics and paper which means you can put all your recyclables in a single bin and leave it for the weekly collection.

If you live outside the city proper, your recycling options might be slightly limited, depending on where you live. Check this list on the Solid Waste Management District’s website to see where you can recycle in your neighborhood. 

Household Items

Within every household there is a basement, and within that basement, there is an untold number of things lying around that no one knows what to do with. Old jeans, battered mattresses and plenty of outdated decorations. Fortunately, there's plenty of places around Cleveland where you can take these items to ensure they're recycled or disposed of properly.



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Clothing is something that is always in demand from nonprofits, both local and national. However, do not bother donating your old skivvies or those raggedy socks with the holes. Any clothing you donate should be 100% intact:



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Mattresses can be a tricky item to get rid of, especially if the local garbage man doesn’t collect them. Fortunately, most places in Cuyahoga County will accept them as part of their bulk waste collection. If you live in a city that doesn’t accept them for disposal, you can always take them to a local transfer station or donate them (provided they are gently used). 


Medicines & Prescription Drugs

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Medicines and prescription drugs are generally safe to dispose of in your trash can, provided that you follow certain guidelines. If you have pen injectors or syringes to dispose of, you can use mail-in disposal programs offered by area pharmacies. However, other cities may require you to take the drugs to a dedicated drop box or other location:


Yard Waste & Tree Stumps

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Yard waste is the price we pay for having green lawns and shady summer trees. Fortunately, there are plenty of options for getting rid of yard waste without having to resort to a discreet backyard bonfire. Any of the businesses below can take care of your yard waste and even turn it into compost and mulch!


For Everything Else…

Hazardous Waste Drop-Off:

The average home contains all kinds of debris and materials that are considered hazardous waste, including the following items:

Solvents Varnishes

Paint Thinner

Pesticides & Herbicides
Household Cleaners Pool Chemicals
Automotive Fluids Adhesives
Kerosene Fluorescent Bulbs

You can dispose of these items through the Cuyahoga County Solid Waste Management District’s household hazardous waste disposal program. You can find your local drop off location on the County’s website here

Electronics Buyback Programs:


  • will take your old smartphone in exchange for cash or gift cards. 

Best Buy

  • Accepts virtually any used electronics for recycling including computers, laptops, audio equipment, batteries, cords, & cell phones. Processing fees may be required for certain electronics such as old school CRT televisions. 


  • Sell any used smartphone to uSell, including the broken ones buried in a box in your closet, and receive payout commensurate with the value of your phone. 

Take What Remains to Your Local Landfill:

Municipal Solid Waste Landfills: Construction & Demolition Debris Landfills:

Cuyahoga Regional Landfill

6640 Cochran Rd.

Solon, OH


(800) 963-4776

Rosby Resource Recycling

4963 Schaaf Lane

Brooklyn Hts., Ohio


(216) 661-6102

Harvard Refuse Landfill

7720 Harvard Ave

Cleveland, OH


(216) 883-8155

Stark C&D Disposal

7280 Lisbon St.

East Canton, OH


(330) 488-6161

Norton Environmental Landfill

9191 Postal Dr.

Cleveland, OH


(440) 740-1186

Boyas Excavating

11311 Rockside Rd.

Valley View


List of Public Transfer Stations  

Recycling Success Stories in Cleveland

How Quasar Energy Uses Yesterday’s Food Scraps for Energy

Cleveland’s West Side is home to a huge metal stomach. This stomach is hungry; hungry for food scraps, agricultural byproducts, and raw sewage. Yum! The big metal stomach is what’s called an anaerobic digester, essentially a large silo or dome with some extra machinery attached to it that can turn its organic fuel into some highly useful things.

One of these things is electricity. Quasar’s digesters collect the methane produced by the decaying food, and whatever else is locked up inside the silo, and then burns it inside a gas turbine to produce electricity. The process is both renewable and low-emission, providing a clean source of energy while also reusing organic waste that would otherwise decay inside a landfill. 

Vadxx’s Strange Brew Turns Soda Bottles into Diesel

There’s a new recycling method brewing in Cleveland’s backyard. The Akron startup, Vadxx, has spent years perfecting a novel approach to plastic recycling, one that can theoretically utilize any form of non-hazardous plastic. Since virtually all plastics are derived from petroleum, there is a huge potential for anyone who can find a way to convert things like plastic bottles back into petroleum, and Vadxx thinks they have it figured out.

Their process works by essentially boiling plastic waste until it forms a vapor which then travels through a condenser where it reverts back to liquid form. Once in liquid form, the petroleum brew can be sold as natural gas, the same stuff that heats your home and runs your gas stove. Vadxx operates a 2-acre plant in Akron that will be able to process 60 tons of waste per day, enough to fill 8-12 tanker trucks, once it reaches full capacity. 

Recycling the Rust Belt with Rust Belt Reclamation

Rust Belt Reclamation is a company dedicated to the idea of renewal and rejuvenation. Operating out of an old industrial mill, this homegrown Cleveland operation uses reclaimed wood from 

abandoned structures throughout the city to fabricate new furniture and wall features. Every piece of wood they harvest is labeled by the location it was recovered from, allowing customers to identify the exact piece of Cleveland that went into the manufacturing of their new table or chair.

Much of the wood collected by Rust Belt Reclamation is sourced from the city’s old industrial buildings, ones that are due for demolition. Not only does this keep more materials out of the landfill, it helps preserve an exquisite stock of old growth lumber that is both longer lasting and more appealing to the eye than virgin lumber stock.