The City of Boise's recycling system depends on making sure everything in your cart can actually be recycled once it leaves the curb. So, if your recycling cart contains items that don't belong there, they can either clog the sorting lines (e.g. plastic bags or films), or make materials less valuable. Eventually, it drives up costs for everyone.
As residents, we can help the recycling system work well by putting the right things in the recycling cart and keeping the wrong things out. Learn what goes in and what stays out by checking out the lists below.
We'll answer your questions about residential recycling, re-use or waste reduction options.
What Goes In
(Put in Recycling cart)
- Plastic beverage and detergent bottles
- Junk mail
- Wrapping paper
- Egg cartons
- Miscellaneous paper
- Aluminum and Steel Cans
- Aluminum Foil
- Plastic clamshell containers
(Next to Recycling cart)
Used motor oil: Recycle up to two gallons per household per week.
- Set out a non-returnable, transparent plastic container next to your trash cart.
- Label container "Used Motor Oil".
- Avoid mixing oil with other fluids (gasoline, antifreeze, water). The oil becomes contaminated and cannot be recycled.
What Stays Out
(Put in Trash cart)
PUT IN RECYCLING CART
Including ads and other paper inserts. Do not include rubber bands or plastic bags.
Including soft drink, juice, laundry and dishwasher detergent bottles made with rigid, not crinkly or flexible plastic.
Flatten cardboard boxes and cut up any boxes larger than three feet in any direction. Do not include wax-coated cardboard or pizza boxes
Including catalogs and telephone books.
Including all colors of scrap paper and envelopes (windows & labels okay) and post cards.
Cereal, cracker, cookie and shoe boxes.
Including tissue paper, craft paper, paper without shiny or glitter coating.
Without foil or glitter.
Including copier and printer paper, fax paper, construction paper, stationery, file folders, note paper, computer paper, brochures, coupons, Post-it notes, shredded paper.
A light rinse may be all it takes to remove food. Otherwise, thoroughly rinse to remove residue.
Rinse, if foil is covered with food residue.
Take-out food containers used for salads, tomatoes, sandwiches and other deli items.
PUT IN TRASH CART
Made with a plastic that keeps them from getting soggy when exposed to moisture.
Like freezer boxes, “paper” cups are coated with plastic so they don’t dissolve when filled with liquid.
Pizza boxes are often soaked with grease and food residue.
It gets tangled in the machinery at the sorting facility.
Including ribbon, metal charms, buttons, vinyl overlay and musical greeting cards.
Reuse, if possible.
Reuse, if possible.
Including Tyvek envelopes, which are paper mailer envelopes lined with bubble wrap.
Save and re-use for other gifts.
Plastic food wrap, grocery bags, shopping bags, freezer bags, produce bags, and other types of cellophane and film.
Bottles that are easy to easy to crush including thin, lightweight plastic bottles that are made with post consumer recycled plastic (PET)