Public Works and Environmental Services

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Our office is open 9AM-5PM M-F

12000 Government Center Parkway
Suite 448 Fairfax, VA 22035

James Patteson,
Director

Residential Materials

Types of Residential Materials

What Happens to Your Recyclables and Trash?

Index of Residential Materials

 

Residential Materials

Some materials taken to the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex are subject to disposal fees or special processing fees. See the online Residents' Facility Guide for information about disposal fees and regulations.

  • Acetone: (See Chemicals, Solvents.)
  • Acid, Muriatic: Also known as "Hydrochloric Acid." See Chemicals, Acid/Alkali.
  • Aerosol Cans/Spray:
    • EMPTY:
      • If it once contained a flammable or hazardous product (i.e., hairspray, pesticide, cleaner), take it to a county Household Hazardous Waste Site. Recycle all others at the curb.  
    • PARTIALLY FULL or FULL
      • If the contents are flammable or hazardous (i.e., hairspray, pesticide, cleaner), take it to a county Household Hazardous Waste Site. Recycle all others at the curb.
  • Air Conditioning Units: (See Appliances.)
  • Aluminum Cans
    • Empty and rinse. Please flatten to save space.
    • Cans are collected curbside and are accepted at all recycling drop-off centers. Aluminum cans may also be taken to certain Fire and Rescue Stations.  Call 703-246-3801, TTY 711 for a station near you.
  • Aluminum Foil, Pie Tins, etc.:  Clean thoroughly and recycle curbside.  
  • Ammonium Hydroxide: (See Chemical, Acid/Alkali.)
  • Ammunition: Call the Police Non-Emergency Number:  703-691-2131, TTY 703-877-3715.
  • Animal Carcass
  • Animal Waste: Double bag and dispose in regular trash.
  • Antifreeze: Pour into a special container located at the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex.
  • Appliances
    • LARGE:
      • Handle refrigerators, stoves, washers, dryers and air conditioners carefully. Avoid damaging tubing and releasing refrigerant into the air. Do not include: gas tanks, propane or refrigerant tanks.
      • If a private company collects your trash and recyclables, contact them to arrange for a special collection.  If you have county trash and recycling service, call 703-802-3322, TTY 711 or schedule the collection online.
      • Important:  Remove all doors from large appliances before setting at the curb. Small children often play inside used appliances and may get trapped.
      • Large, metal appliances are accepted at the White Goods/Metal Recycling Area of the I-66 or I-95 Recycling and Disposal Center. In addition, several nonprofit building supply stores accept donations of new and/or gently used appliances.
    • SMALL:
      • If new or gently used, consider donating it to charity.  If you do choose to dispose of the small appliance in the trash, first remove any batteries that are present. See batteries for more information.  
  • Asbestos: Please contact the I-66 Transfer Station (703-631-1179, TTY 711) or the I-95 Landfill Complex (703-690-1703, TTY 711)  for specific instructions on disposing of asbestos materials.
  • Ashes: After 24 hours have passed, all leftover hot ash material must be thoroughly dampened, cooled, and stored in a metal can that is used solely for ash storage. (Ashes that are two or three days old may appear to be safe, but can still retain enough heat to cause a fire.) After all procedures have been followed, you can place the container out for regular trash collection.
  • Asphalt: (See Inert Materials.)
  • Bathtubs/Toilets/Sinks: If made of cast iron or metal, they can be taken to the White Goods/Metal Recycling Area of I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex.  If made of porcelain or fiberglass, they can be taken to those facilities for disposal.
  • Batteries
  • Bicycles: May be taken to the I-95 Landfill Complex in Lorton. Bicycles collected at I-95 are donated to Bikes for the World, a nonprofit, charitable organization. Call 703-740-7856 for information about their community collection events. You may also donate your bicycle to another charitable organization.
  • Blood: If it is in liquid form, contact a biohazardous disposal company.
  • Boats/Cars/Trucks/Motorcycles: Not accepted for disposal. Call a junk dealer or automotive salvage company for curbside collection.
  • Books: In general, the library will accept only popular titles.  Books should be clean and in good condition.  Donations are accepted during open hours at any branch of the Fairfax County Public Library.  For more information, see the corresponding Friends of the Library page.
  • Boxes:  (See Mixed Paper.)
  • Brick: (See Inert Materials.)
  • Brush/Tree Limbs: (See Yard Waste.)
  • Building Materials: (See Construction Debris.) 
  • Cardboard - (See Mixed Paper.)
  • Carpet - A small truckload can be taken to the I-66 Transfer Station or the I-95 Landfill Complex.
  • Cars - (See Boats/Cars/Trucks/Motorcycles.)
  • Cartons (See Mixed Paper.)
  • Cartridges, Ink/Laser - (See Printer Cartridges.)
  • Cellular Phones - See a list of organizations that accept cellular phones for recycling or dispose of them with regular trash. (If you do choose to dispose of a cell phone in the trash, make sure to remove the rechargeable battery first. See Batteries.)
  • Ceramic Tiles (See Inert Materials.)
  • Charcoal Starter (See Chemicals, Fuel.)
  • Chemical, Acid/Alkali - Muriatic Acid ("Hydrochloric Acid"), Ammonium Hydroxide - Take to a Household Hazardous Waste Site. If container is empty, it can be disposed of in the trash.
  • Chemicals, Fuel
  • Chemicals, Pesticides/Herbicides - Take to a Household Hazardous Waste Site. Take empty aerosol cans to a Household Hazardous Waste Site. Recycle other empty metal cans and plastic bottles at the curb.
  • Chemicals, Photographic:  Diluted developers, fixers, etc. can be poured down the drain inside your home. NEVER pour products down storm drains.
  • Chemicals, Pool: Take to a Household Hazardous Waste Site. If container is empty, it can be disposed of in the trash.
  • Chemicals, Solvents (Acetone, Turpentine, etc.): Take to a Household Hazardous Waste Site. If container is empty, it can be disposed of in the trash.
  • Cinder Block (See Inert Materials.)
  • Cleaning Products
  • Clothing & Household Items:
    • Consider holding a yard sale or donating to a charity or thrift shop.
    • For a list of organizations accepting charitable donations of clothing, search for donations and clothing in the Human Services Resource Guide
       
  • Compressed Gas Cylinders - Contact local supplier regarding tanks larger than 20 pounds. (See Gas Propane Tanks.)
  • Computers/Monitors (Recycle it at one of the County electronics drop-off locations at the I-66 Transfer Station & I-95 Landfill Complex or donate it for reuse.) If disposing of it, contact your hauler for instructions. If you have county collection service, you must schedule a bulk special collection for computers/computer monitors
  • Concrete (See Inert Materials.)
  • Confidential or Sensitive Documents - Shred and recycle with paper. See a list of upcoming shredding events.
  • Construction Debris - See Inert Materials and Roofing Shingles. (NOTE: If a contractor performed the work, they should be responsible for disposing of any associated trash or debris.)
  • Cooking Oil - Waste cooking oil is collected in the Household Hazardous Waste disposal areas located at the I-95 Landfill Complex and I-66 Transfer Station. Accepted cooking oils include deep fryer oil, vegetable oil, peanut oil and oil used to prepare food on a grill, griddle, frying pan, fryer or wok. Cooking oil should be delivered in original containers when possible, or in clearly-labeled uncontaminated containers. Solidified grease and other fats are NOT accepted through this program. Please continue to "can the grease" and dispose of it with your regular household trash. For additional information, call 703-324-5230, TTY 711.
  • DDT Liquid (See Chemicals, Pesticides/Herbicides.)
  • Diapers - Dispose in regular trash.
  • Diesel (See Chemicals, Fuel.)
  • Dirt (See Inert Materials.)
  • Dishwasher (See Appliances.)
  • Doors/Windows - Intact glass windows, sliding doors, glass sheets and mirrors can be taken to the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex for disposal. Wood or metal without glass pieces can be placed into the trash. See separate instructions for glass.  Metal frames can be taken to the White Goods/Metal Recycling Area of the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex.  
  • Drywall (See Inert Materials.)
  • Electronics - See a list of organizations that accept electronics (i.e., cell phones, televisions, computers) for recycling.
    • If the device contains a removable battery, please remove it. The battery requires separate handling. (See Batteries.)
    • An electronics item may be set out with regular trash as long as it weighs 50 lbs or less. Larger, heavier items may require a special collection. Contact your private hauler for instructions. If you have county collection service and your electronic item weighs more than 50 lbs, you must schedule a bulk special collection.
    • See E-cycling Program.
  • Explosives - Call the Police Non-Emergency Number:  703-691-2131, TTY 703-877-3715.
  • Fertilizer
  • Fiberglass Insulation - Small quantities may be bagged and disposed of in regular trash. Large quantities may require a special collection. Contact your trash hauler for details.
  • Fire Extinguishers:
  • Firewood (See Wood & Lumber.)
  • Fireworks
    • Legal fireworks - Soak in water until completely saturated and then throw away in regular trash.
    • Illegal fireworks - Call Fire Prevention Division, 703-246-4741, TTY 703-385-4419.
  • Flammable Liquids (See Chemicals, Fuel.)
  • Flares - Soak in water until completely saturated and then throw away in regular trash.
  • Fluorescent Bulbs & Tubes: Unbroken bulbs and tubes may be taken to a Household Hazardous Waste Site.
  • Food & Beverage Cans (Metal)
    • Rinse to remove residue. Set out curbside with other recyclables. They are also accepted at all recycling drop-off centers.
  • Freon (see Refrigerant.)
  • Fuel (See Chemicals, Fuel.)
  • Furniture - Includes furniture, carpet, mattresses and box springs.  Donate to a charity if possible.  If you choose to dispose of them, larger, heavier items may require a special collection. Contact your private hauler for instructions. If you have county collection service you must schedule a bulk special collection. Furniture, mattresses, etc. may also be taken to the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex for disposal.  
  • Gas Grills without tank - Take to White Goods/Metal Recycling Area of the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex.
  • Gas Propane Tanks - Small tanks, such as those used on gas grills (up to 20 pounds), can be taken to the White Goods/Metal Recycling Area of the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex. Larger tanks must be returned to supplier.
  • Gas Tank from Car - Must be empty and cut in half. Take to White Goods/Metal Recycling area of the I-66 or I-95 Recycling and Disposal Center.
  • Gasoline/Gasoline-Oil Mixture (See Chemicals, Fuel.)
  • Glass
    • Glass bottles and jars are collected curbside and are accepted at all recycling drop-off centers.
    • Doors/Windows
    • Broken glass - carefully package into a rigid container. Label the package "GLASS" and set out with your trash for disposal.
  • Glue
  • Grass/Leaves/Plant Trimmings. (See Yard Waste.)
  • Grocery Bags - Take plastic bags to neighborhood grocery store that has a plastic bag recycling collection container. Paper bags can be recycled with mixed paper at the curb.
  • Hazardous Waste
  • Helium Tank - Small thin-metaled tanks accepted at the White Goods/Metal Recycling Area of the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex.  Larger tanks should be returned to supplier.
  • Inert Materials (Noncombustible) - Asphalt, Brick, Cement, Ceramic, Cinder Block, Concrete, Dirt, Drywall, Marble, Porcelain, Rock, Slate. Only a small amount may be taken to the I-66 Transfer Station in Fairfax. Larger amounts should be taken to the I-95 Landfill Complex in Lorton.
  • Ink (See Printer Cartridges.)
  • Inks and Dyes - Take to a Household Hazardous Waste Site. If container is empty, it can be disposed of in the trash.
  • Junk Mail (See Mixed Paper.)
  • Kerosene (See Chemicals, Fuel.)
  • Kitty Litter (See Animal Waste.)
  • Laser Cartridges (See Printer Cartridges.)
  • Lawn Mower (See Scrap Metal.)
  • Leaves (See Yard Waste.)
  • Lumber (See Wood & Lumber.)
  • Marble or Slate (See Inert Materials.)
  • Matches - Soak in water until saturated, then dispose in regular trash.
  • Mattresses and Box Springs (See Furniture.)
  • Medicine - DO NOT flush unused medicine down the toilet unless the label specifically directs you to do so. Never pour products down storm drains. DO throw unwanted medicine in the trash following these directions.
  • Mercury Containing Products (Thermometers, Switches, Other) - Take to a Household Hazardous Waste Site.
  • Metal (See Scrap Metal, see Food & Beverage Cans.)
  • Microwave Ovens (See Appliances.)
  • Moth Balls - Take to a Household Hazardous Waste Site.
  • Motor Oil (See Chemicals, Fuel.)
  • Mixed Paper = cardboard, newspaper, cereal boxes, catalogs, magazines, office paper, colored paper, junk mail, telephone books, paper grocery bags, photographs, juice boxes, milk cartons
    • Empty beverage/soup containers, remove lids, caps and straws
    • Keep clean and dry. No need to separate.
    • Be sure to flatten all cardboard. Remove Styrofoam and plastic linings from boxes.
    • If you shred your paper first, please put it in a bag, prior to setting it out at the curb, to prevent litter.
    • Do not include items with food residue.
  • Motorcycles (See Boats/Cars/Trucks/Motorcycles.)
  • Nail Polish/Nail Remover - Take to a Household Hazardous Waste Site. If container is empty, it can be disposed of in the trash.
  • Needles/Syringes
  • Newspaper (See Mixed Paper.)
  • Oil (See Chemicals, Fuel.)
  • Packaging Peanuts (See Styrofoam.)
  • Paint
    • Oil or Lead-based Paint - Take to a Household Hazardous Waste Site. If container is empty, it can be disposed of in the trash.
    • Latex - let air dry and throw container in trash. (Tip:  You may pour the paint onto newspaper. Once it dries, roll up the newspaper and dispose of it in the trash.) If you are unable to let the latex paint dry, you may take the container to a Household Hazardous Waste Site.
  • Pallets - Can be taken to the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex for disposal.
  • Paper (See Mixed Paper.)
  • Pesticides (See Chemicals, Pesticides/Herbicides.)
  • Phone Books - (See Mixed Paper.)
  • Photographs - (See Mixed Paper.)
  • Photographic Chemicals (See Chemicals, Photographic.)
  • Pizza Boxes - Remove all food residue and recycle with Mixed Paper.
  • Plastic Bottles & Jugs
    • The only types of plastics that are required to be recycled in Fairfax County are plastic bottles and jugs.  Recycling any additional plastics is entirely voluntary.  Ask your trash hauler for specific guidance.  Many of them are now collecting additional plastics such as yogurt containers and margarine tubs – even pill bottles. 
    • At this time, only plastic bottles and jugs are accepted at area recycling drop-off centers. Remember, these are the only mandated plastics at this time.
  • Plastic Wrap - Dispose of in the trash.
  • Poisons - Take to a Household Hazardous Waste Site.
  • Pool Chemicals (See Chemicals, Pool.)
  • Power Tools - If the tool contains a rechargeable battery, please remove it. Take the battery to one of the listed locations for recycling or to a Household Hazardous Waste Site for disposal.  You may then take your metal power tool to the White Goods/Metal Recycling Area of the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex.  Plastic power tools are not accepted.
  • Printer Cartridges
    • Liquid or flammable cartridges need to be disposed of as household hazardous waste.
    • All others can be disposed of in regular trash.
    • Some office supply stores accept used toner cartridges for recycling.  Inquire at nearby stores to find out if they provide this service.  
  • Radioactive Materials - Call the Department of Public Safety Communications at 703-691-2131, TTY 703-877-3715.  
  • Railroad Ties - Must be cut in 2-foot lengths. These are accepted at the I-66 Transfer Station and I-95 Landfill Complex for disposal.
  • Refrigerant (Coolant): 
  • Refrigerator (See Appliances.)
  • Remodeling Debris (See Inert Materials.)
  • Rocks (See Inert Materials.)
  • Roofing Shingles - Tar shingles accepted for disposal at the I-66 Transfer Station and I-95 Landfill Complex. (See Asbestos.)
  • Scrap Metal - Appliances, lawn mowers, metal sheds, wire fences, etc. Take to Metal Recycling/White Goods Area of the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex.
  • Sealant - Take sealant for driveways and other surfaces to a Household Hazardous Waste Site. Take empty aerosol cans to a Household Hazardous Waste Site. Recycle other empty metal cans and plastic bottles at the curb.
  • Septic Tank - Call Health Department Inspections at 703-246-2201, TTY 703-591-6435.
  • Shoe Polish - Dispose in regular trash.
  • Sinks (See Bathtubs/Toilets/Sinks.)
  • Smoke Alarms - First remove battery. May dispose of smoke alarm in trash or send back to manufacturer. (See Batteries.)
  • Sod - dispose in regular trash. (See Yard Waste.)
  • Stove (See Appliances.)
  • Steel Cans (See Food & Beverage Cans.)
  • Styrofoam - Packaging peanuts can be recycled at some stores.  Call 1-800-828-2214, TTY 711 for locations. Dispose of other Styrofoam items in trash.
  • Televisions are accepted for recycling at the I-66 Transfer Station and I-95 Landfill Complex.
  • Thermometers/Thermostats containing mercury (See Mercury Containing Products.)
  • Tires
  • Toilets (See Bathtubs/Toilets/Sinks.)
  • Toner Cartridges (See Printer Cartridges.)
  • Trash - bagged trash can be taken to the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex for disposal.
  • Tree Stumps - Must be free of most dirt. Stumps can be taken to the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex.
  • Turpentine (See Chemicals, Solvents.)
  • Water Heater (See Appliances.)
  • Windows (See Doors/Windows.)
  • Wire Fences (See Scrap Metal.)
  • Wood & Lumber (See Pallets, See Railroad Ties) - Paneling, pressure-treated or nonpressure treated wood can be taken to the I-66 Transfer Station or I-95 Landfill Complex for disposal. Must not exceed eight feet in length.
  • Yard Waste