Guide for Reuse, Repair, Recycling, and Safe Disposal
for Alameda County, Contra Costa County, and the City of Palo Alto

Bulky Items, DIY Renos & Illegal Dumping

Many bulky items such as old, broken, damaged, and non-working furniture, appliances, mattresses, and tires are not accepted in weekly curbside garbage or recycling service. Since these materials require extra effort to dispose of, they are often illegally dumped which causes a public nuisance, damages the environment, and is expensive for local government to clean up. There are many options to properly dispose of bulky items.

Curbside Bulky Pick Up Service

  • All residents of single-family homes in Alameda County have at least one annual curbside bulky pick up that is included with regular waste service. Many cities offer additional free or fee-based pickups.
  • Multi-family residential bulky pick up is available in some cities. For this service, the property manager or landlord usually makes the appointment and then notifies tenants about when it will occur.
  • Businesses can contact their hauler to order a temporary Debris Box or ask about other disposal options.
  • Contact your hauler to find more information or to schedule a pick up.

​Common Bulky Items

Categories of items accepted by most programs include old, broken, damaged, and non-working: mattresses, furniture, major home appliances, electronics (boxed), large televisions, tires, small household appliances, yard debris (boxed or paper bagged), and trash (bagged). Find detailed disposal information about the some common bulky items:

Transfer Station and Landfill Drop Off

Bulky items can be self-hauled to a transfer station or landfill. Fees vary by facility and based on what items are dropped off.

Find a local transfer station or landfill.


For highest and best use, please consider repairing (ex. iFixit), refurbishing, donating, or finding a creative reuse for bulky items rather than sending them to the landfill. Local listservs and online groups like Craigslist, FreeCycle, Buy Nothing & Marketplace Facebook Groups, NextDoor, and others are great ways to find people with skills and time to breathe new life into your unwanted objects. For items that still work and are in resellable condition, consider donation or posting online for reuse.

Construction and Demolition Debris Services

Residents doing DIY home renovations should contact their hauler for C&D or Debris Box service for materials like dry wall, scrap metal, bathroom fixtures, tile, roofing, doors, bricks, carpet, old cabinets, and insulation. Some businesses specialize in reselling donated left over building materials that are in good condition.

Find hauler contact information

Illegal Dumping

You can use our Curbside Service Information summary to determine who to contact to report illegal dumping, or select your city from the main Curbside Services page to see all the details for your area. CalRecycle offers a GeoMap to find local resources for reporting illegal dumping in California.

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