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Prohibited Items

What You Should Keep out of Your Dumpster

Though you can dispose of many different types of debris with us, there are certain items that we cannot accept in our dumpsters. These include all flammable, toxic and hazardous materials, as well as certain items that can damage a container or that landfills won’t accept. 

Common Symbols for Hazardous Materials

Commonly Used Symbols for Hazardous Materials

To determine if your materials are toxic or hazardous, check for warning labels on the items in question, including the symbols above. Most chemical products fall under those categories, including household cleaning solutions and sprays. If your debris is marked as such, do not throw it in your dumpster. Check out our page on what can go in a dumpster for more information.

Prohibited items fall under the following categories:

Automotive Waste | Household Items | Organic Waste | Additional Prohibited Items

Important Note: Bulk waste items are accepted in some locations but not all. This includes furniture, appliances, electronics and mattresses. Local disposal costs and regulations for these items vary by location. Check out our how to dispose of bulk waste page for more information.

Automotive Waste



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All tires are prohibited as they can damage landfill structures and equipment. Whole tires are capable of "floating" to the top of a landfill as methane gas builds up inside the tire's inner wall. Most auto parts stores and municipal waste departments will accept old tires for recycling.



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Car batteries are hazardous because they contain high levels of lead and other heavy metals that cannot be mixed with other waste. Anytime you find yourself with a dead car battery, take it to an auto parts store or authorized recycling center.



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Prohibited oils include those used in vehicles and as industrial lubricants. Used motor oil is recyclable through a number of nationwide retailers, as well as most auto parts and mechanic shops.



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All types of fuel are banned by landfills. Gasoline or petroleum is highly flammable and should only be disposed of if it can no longer be used as a fuel source. Look up hazardous waste collection centers near you for safe disposal. 

Household Items


Paints and Lacquers

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Paints and lacquers are prohibited because they may contain lead or mercury, especially those manufactured prior to the 1990s. If you have leftover paint cans, consult our guide to learn how to properly recycle or dispose of them.



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Items containing refrigerant must be evacuated according to federal disposal guidelines. Properly drained refrigerators can be disposed of using our dumpsters in some cases. Contact us to determine if we can accept your refrigerator.


Hot Water Tanks

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Hot water tanks are generally not accepted for disposal because their void space can collect harmful gases inside landfills. If you need to dispose of a hot water heater or tank, contact your local waste management department or recycling facility. 


Ink & Resins

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Ink used in pens and printers, as well as resins, can damage equipment and stain the interior of dumpsters. However, you can find drop-off locations for these items at recycling facilities and local retailers.

Organic Waste


Food Waste

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Though accepted in landfills, food waste is not allowed in our dumpsters to avoid spoilage and attracting vermin. If you have to dispose of large amounts of food waste, consider using municipal trash services or sending the waste to a local composting center.



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Tree stumps are prohibited because they can damage the liners used in landfills. To dispose of a stump, check with your local recycling center to see if they accept tree stumps, rent a wood chipper or hire a landscaping company to remove it for you.


Contaminated Soils and Absorbents

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Contaminated soils and absorbents that are mixed with hazardous substances cannot be disposed of through normal waste haulers. Contaminated soils and absorbents must either be treated or contained per federal superfund guidelines.

Additional Prohibited Items


Railroad Ties

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Railroad ties are pieces of creosote-treated lumber, which can be harmful when handled improperly. They are not accepted by landfills and should be disposed of according to local, state and federal guidelines.



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Asbestos is a flame retardant found in older homes and various industrial products. It is considered a carcinogen in most U.S. states, resulting in landfill bans. If you know your home contains asbestos, you should contact a licensed contractor to ensure safe removal.


Infectious Waste

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Infectious waste consists of materials used in medicine or that have come into contact with bodily fluids. Used medical supplies, including needles and bandages, should be handled by waste haulers licensed for medical waste disposal.


Industrial Drums

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Industrial drums contain potentially dangerous byproducts of a number of different industrial processes. These should be disposed of through haulers licensed for hazardous waste disposal.



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Adhesives, such as glue or epoxy, should not go in a dumpster as they can bind other materials to the interior of the container. Instead, throw these items out with your regular household trash or recycling.