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

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Light Bulbs - CFLs

CFLs (Compact Fluorescent Lamps) are a type of energy efficient light bulb in which the glass tubing is curved or folded to fit into the shape of a traditional incandescent "light bulb," and include a compact electronic ballast in the base of the item.

Household Hazardous Waste

This item should never be put in a curbside bin. For more information visit our household hazardous waste page.

Do not throw fluorescent or other mercury-containing lights in the trash or recycling bins. High intensity discharge, metal halide, sodium and neon lights all contain mercury as well. It’s illegal and mercury exposure can harm the brain, heart, and immune and nervous systems. Mercury products contaminate California’s drinking water, fish, soil, and air when they are not managed properly. The mercury limit in drinking water is 2 parts per billion in California, since even low quantities are extremely hazardous.

The following lamps are considered hazardous in California: fluorescent lamps, compact fluorescent lamps, HID lamps, High intensity discharge lamps, metal halide lamps, sodium vapor lamps, grow lamps, Zenon lamps, headlights - auto, mercury vapor lamps, video projector lamps, ultraviolet lamps, UV lamps, water treatment lamps, sun lamps, tanning lamps, mercury containing lamps, LED lamps. The following ballasts are considered hazardous in California: light fixture ballasts, lamp ballasts, electronic ballasts, fluorescent light ballasts, HID light ballasts, PCB containing ballasts, no-PCB ballasts.

Be sure to transport in a way that prevents breakage. If a light breaks, refer to epa.gov/cfl. If a bulb breaks, open a window to disperse mercury vapor, collect the shards with tape, and place in a closed and sealed container—do not vacuum!

How are lights recycled? Lights must be recycled at EPA-approved sites. Glass is recycled or landfilled, recovered metal is recycled, and mercury is stored, disposed, or reused.

Vendors

Vendor Address City Destination Disposal Method Notes
Recology San Francisco Transfer Station Public Recycling and Disposal Drop Off 501 Tunnel Ave. San Francisco Safe Disposal Free Drop-off Limit 30 bulbs per month FREE - $3/bulb each additional bulb.
Recology SF Business Haz. Waste Drop-Off (VSQG Program) 501 Tunnel Ave. San Francisco Safe Disposal Free Drop-off, Drop-off for a Fee First 30 bulbs or tubes are free - $3.00/unit for greater than 30. Bulbs and tubes must be delivered in sealed boxes and labeled as Universal Waste. Use Public Disposal Area or make appointment for VSQG Service. SF businesses ONLY
Recology SF Household Hazardous Waste Home Collection San Francisco Safe Disposal Free Pick-up San Francisco Residents only.
RecycLights 20283 Santa Maria Ave Castro Valley Safe Disposal Pick-up for a Fee All recycling cost are included. Simply place lamps in container and call RecycLights toll free when completely full for pick-up.
Republic Services, Inc. Mail Back Service 42600 Boyce Rd Fremont Recycle Mail-in for a Fee
Revolt Recycling 657 143rd Ave San Leandro Safe Disposal Drop-off for a Fee lamps & ballasts. MERCURY CONTAINING DEVICES MUST BE DELIVERED TO REVOLT
Roberts Hardware 1629 Haight St. San Francisco Safe Disposal Free Drop-off There is a 5 light limit per trip.
Safety Kleen Systems (Rohnert Park) 5750 Commerce Blvd Rohnert Park Safe Disposal Pick-up for a Fee
Safety Kleen Systems (Sacramento) 6000 88th Street Sacramento Safe Disposal Pick-up for a Fee
SF Hardware 512 Divisadero St. San Francisco Safe Disposal Free Drop-off There is a 5 light limit per trip.
SMaRT Station 301 Carl Rd Sunnyvale Safe Disposal Free Drop-off This item is hazardous and must be disposed of properly.
Soko Hardware 1698 Post St. San Francisco Safe Disposal Free Drop-off There is a 5 light limit per trip.
Standard 5&10 Ace Hardware 3545 California St. San Francisco Safe Disposal Free Drop-off There is a 5-light limit per trip
Standard Plumbing 144 Clement St. San Francisco Safe Disposal Free Drop-off There is a 5 light limit per trip.
Standard Plumbing 6122 Geary Blvd. San Francisco Safe Disposal Free Drop-off There is a 5 light limit per trip.
Stanford Electric Works 126 San Antonio Circle Mountain View Safe Disposal Free Drop-off This item is hazardous and must be disposed of properly.
Universal Electric Supply Co. 438 8th St. San Francisco Safe Disposal Free Drop-off There is a 5 light limit per trip.
Vasco Road Landfill & Recycling Drop-off 4001 N. Vasco Rd. Livermore Safe Disposal Free Drop-off Construction & Demolition
West County HHW Collection Facility 101 Pittsburg Ave. Richmond Recycle Free Drop-off, Drop-off for a Fee
WM Think Green From Home 172 98th Ave Oakland Recycle Mail-in for a Fee & ballasts. Online service. Programs for residents and businesses.

Curbside Service

Special Action Note
Alameda
Residents may drop off fluorescent tubes & bulbs at the ACI Alameda office.
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Albany
To dispose of CFL Bulbs call WM(510) 613-8710 for your free Vaporlok Foil Bag. Place up to 6 used, unbroken CFLs inside the bag, and keep sealed at all times. Place bag on top of the Recyclables Cart.
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Berkeley
Castro Valley Sanitary District
Bring to CVSan Recycles Day in April or August, or bring boxed to Pete's Ace Hardware at 2569 Castro Valley Blvd, Castro Valley, CA 94546.
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Dublin
Emeryville
Single family and multifamily accounts can order mail-back collection container at no charge. All Emeryville customers call to order container: 510-613-8710. Not collected curbside.
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Fremont
Hayward
Hayward (Oro Loma - L2)
Livermore
Newark
Oakland
Piedmont
Place unbroken CFL's in Ziploc bag on top of the recycling cart.
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Pleasanton
San Leandro
San Leandro (Oro Loma - L3)
San Lorenzo (Oro Loma)
Unincorporated Oro Loma (L1)
Union City

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