Items NOT accepted at the El Cerrito Recycling Center


Effective May 15, 2019, the City's Recycling Center no longer accepts Plastic Film and Hard Plastic - any kind of flexible plastic (like bags, bubble wrap etc.) or rigid plastic (PVC pipes, plastic appliances, tubs, storage containers, yogurt containers, etc.). The Center still accepts Plastic Bottles (narrow-necks bottles of all kinds and colors).

Unacceptable Items

    • Air Conditioners
    • Appliances - water heaters, stoves, dishwashers, etc.
    • Appliances - plastic rich, non-electronics like coffee makers, vacuums etc.
    • Automotive tires
    • Automotive fluids like coolant, gasoline etc - accepted Tuesdays Only
    • Ballasts from electrical lighting fixtures
    • Building materials
    • Bricks, pavers, broken concrete, ceramics
    • Carpeting, carpet padding, rugs
    • Explosives
    • Fiberglass
    • Foam Rubber
    • Furniture, such as: Sofas, Chairs, Shelving, Tables, Bed Frames, etc., unless made of metal, then can be put in scrap metal bin
    • Garbage, Construction Debris
    • Green Waste: Wood, Grass, Yard Waste, Dirt, Food Scraps
    • Mattresses, Box Springs, Futons
    • Microwaves
    • Mirrors of any type
    • Paint of any type - accepted Tuesdays Only
    • Food-soiled Paper, Plastic, and Cardboard (please compost food-soiled paper products.); bio-waste is landfill (like "Kleenex" tissues)
    • Peanuts - any type of packaging peanuts. Donate to packing stores.  Call first.
    • Sheet or tempered glass (like plexiglass and plate glass)
    • Plastic Film and Hard Plastic - any kind of flexible plastic (like bags, bubble wrap etc.) or rigid plastic (PVC, stapler etc.)
    • Pressurized Tanks: Propane, Acetylene, Helium, Nitrous Oxide, or Aerosols
    • Pyrex glass
    • Refrigerators, water coolers, air conditioners, freezers
    • Smoke Detectors
    • Toilets
    • VHS tapes - Commercially and home recorded tapes can be donated to Goodwill
    • Waxed Paper, Waxed Cardboard (please compost)
    • Wood: lumber, plywood, particle board, broken furniture
    • Zip disks, audio cassette tapes

disposal options 

Residents and businesses can arrange for disposal of items not accepted at the Recycling Center through their FREE Annual Bulky Garbage service or at a local Transfer Station, such as those listed below. Please strive to Reduce, Reuse...and better yet, Refuse items that are hard to recycle.  
The Golden Bear Transfer Station and West Contra Costa County Landfill are located at 1 Parr Boulevard in Richmond. The Berkeley Transfer Station is located at 1201 Second Street in Berkeley.

For additional resources and information on recycling, check Recyclemore (Contra Costa County) and Stopwaste (Alameda County). For information on where to properly dispose of household hazardous waste, check West Contra Costa County HHW or Alameda County HHW. (Proof of residency is required at HHW facilities.)

The Recycling Center does not buy back any materials from the public. For the locations of California Refund Value (CRV) Centers, check CalRecycle.