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Universal and Household Hazardous Waste

Hazardous Waste Intro

The City of Burbank Drop Zone (universal waste collection) is a convenient and safe disposal program for common, yet difficult items to recycle.   
Accepted Items: e-waste, batteries, toner cartridges, bulbs, and used motor oil & antifreeze (cooking and other oils are not accepted). See the drop down listings of these items to learn more.

This program is for Burbank residents and businesses with small amounts of universal waste.  (I.D. required) 

Address: Burbank Recycle Center 500 S. Flower St. 
Hours:  Monday through Friday, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Closed Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays

Weekend Drop Off:  Los Angeles county residents can take universal waste items to an LA S.A.F.E. Center.

Electronic waste (e-waste) is anything that plugs into an outlet or uses a battery. It is illegal to place e-waste in any collection container and must be dropped off.

Consider Donation 
If the item is still usable donate or give away using free marketplace sites. 

Repair, Don’t Replace!
Instead of buying new, support local businesses by having them repair and refurbish broken items. Search for repair options in your area.

Drop off limit:  100 lbs of e-waste per year per household

It is illegal in California to dispose of batteries in the trash or recycling containers.  Because many types of batteries contain chemicals that can ignite, it is important to dispose of them correctly by dropping them off at an official battery collection program. 

Step One: Prep and Protect the Terminals
Single Use - AAA, AA, C, D: These don’t require special taping or handling.

Single Use - Coin cell and lithum: Bag each battery by itself, separately.    

Rechargables and 6 or 9 volt:  To properly secure a battery, place a piece of tape over the positive terminal end so that it does not come into contact with metal or other batteries. (Use clear packing, non-conductive electrical or duct tape—NO MASKING TAPE)  Place enough tape to safely cover the positive terminal but keep the label visible. Keep in mind, every battery that is recycled is sorted by type and chemistry so avoid wrapping the entire battery in tape or taping different chemistries together.
Step Two—Bag
Place batteries into a secured, clear  plastic produce or sandwich bag and drop off at a S.A.F.E. Collection Center or the Burbank Recycle Center.
Only Burbank residents can drop off at Burbank Recycle Center’s Drop Zone.

CalRecycle’s Other Ways You Can Help:

Already have rechargeable batteries that need to be recycled? Find additional drop off options at www.call2recycle.org for rechargeable batteries. Please do not put single use batteries in these collection bins.

  • Look for Portable Electronic Devices that Do Not Use Batteries.
    Some devices instead use a capacitor that is recharged, typically by shaking the device or by normal use rather than batteries. See Alternative Power Products for details.

  • Reduce. Use single-use batteries wisely to avoid unnecessary replacement and disposal.

Burbank Recycle Center accepts most ink cartridges, as long as the brand name is displayed (Brother, HP, Canon, etc.). 

Aftermarket (generic) cartridges are not accepted. Unfortunately, market forces offer limited recycling options for aftermarket or refilled cartridges, so these will go in the trash.

Reduce and reuse!  Save money and help reduce waste by refilling your own!

Identifying a CFL Bulb

If you are unsure if your bulb is CFL, check if your bulb is listed with these other CFL bulbs: linear, U-tube and circline fluorescent tubes, bug zappers, tanning bulbs, black lights, germicidal bulbs, high output bulbs and cold-cathode fluorescent bulbs.

Toxic Alert!  Never Throw in the Garbage
Fluorescent light bulbs contain mercury, which is a hazard for your health and the environment. Never throw them away. Store them outside in a sealed container, and dispose of them as hazardous waste. 

Drop off limit: 10 bulbs per household per year. 

Did you know that we operate Burbank's only self-service draining program? This means you can keep your container, if you desire, when you bring your used motor oil to the Drop Zone for recycling. We also pay you back ten cents per quart (maximum 20 gallons). 

Not a Burbank resident or need to drop off on a Saturday? There are additional motor oil recycling options at these Used Oil Certified Collection Centers.

Benefits of Recycling Used Motor Oil

It takes 42 gallons of crude oil, but only one gallon of used oil, to produce 2 ½ quarts of new lubricating oil. Used motor oil can be re-refined into new lubricants, burned as fuel, or re-refined and made into a high-quality motor oil.

Protect Our Waterways
Oil poured into the trash, down household drains, into storm drains, or directly onto the ground pollutes groundwater, streams, rivers, and lakes. Recycling oil not only protects the environment, it preserves non-renewable resources.

What is HHW?

What is Household Hazardous Waste (HHW)?

Almost every home has common household products containing chemicals that are harmful to humans, animals and the environment.  HHW includes items like cleaners, paints, herbicides, insecticides, and solvents. It is both dangerous and illegal to disposal of HHW in the garbage, recycling containers, down any drain, or on the ground.

Here is a list of what materials are banned from the landfill in the State of California that require special drop off. 

NEVER PLACE HHW IN YOUR CART OR BIN:  It's dangerous for our trucks, staff and facilities.
Do the right thing and take your HHW to the nearest drop-off facility or collection event – It’s FREE for residents! 

The Burbank Recycle Center's Drop Zone does NOT accept HHW. 
View the sections below for additional information on how to responsibly dispose of common HHW items.  A more expansive list of HHW disposal information can be found on the Burbank Where it Goes site. 

California’s mattress stewardship program, Bye Bye Mattress is a law designed to eliminate illegally dumped mattresses by providing convenient recycling collection programs.
Mattresses (including foam), box springs and futon pad recycling options for Burbank residents:

1) RETAILER TAKE BACK ON NEW PURCHASES: Make sure you ask your local or online retailer about their program for collecting your old mattress.  Under the State of California mattress recycling program, if your new mattress is delivered for free*, the retailer (including online sellers) must offer to pick up the old one. 

*This program is administered by the Mattress Recycling Council (MRC) and funded through a $10.50 recyclying fee collected from consumers at point-of-sale when a mattress or box spring is purchased. If you are having difficulty with your retailer pick up service, contact [email protected]. Please include the date of delivery and retailer name. 


2) Bulky Item Pickup for a handling fee

3) Burbank Recycle Center drop off for free* (limit three allowed items per resident per year) 

4) Donation--if the mattress is in good condition, give it away through local marketplace sites like Buy Nothing, Nextdoor, Craigstlist, Freecycle, etc..  Charities are usually not able to take used mattresses but check locally for opportunities or ask mattress retailers about possible charity partnerships.  
How to Donate, Recycle, or Get Rid of Your Mattress - Amerisleep

*Products that are NOT eligible for the Bye Bye Mattress free drop-off include:

  • Items that are wet, heavily soiled or infested with bedbugs
  • Air mattresses that contain no upholstery material (such as camping beds)
  • Car beds
  • Cushions (such as from chairs, couches or patio furniture)
  • Juvenile products including, carriages, baskets, dressing tables, strollers, playpens, infant carriers, lounge pad, crib bumpers
  • Mattress pads
  • Mattress toppers
  • Pillows
  • Sleeping bags
  • Sofa beds
  • Collapsible roll-away beds
  • Water beds that contain no upholstery material
  • NOTE: Metal frames that are no longer usable can be dropped off at the Burbank Recycle Center in the scrap metal bin.
Commercial Options:
There is a charge for mattress drop-off at the Burbank Recycle Center. Call (818) 276-0434 for pricing.

Find other mattress drop-off sites and information at Bye Bye Mattress. Visit their FAQ to find out what defines a recycleable mattress product

The Burbank Recycle Center's Drop Zone does not accept medicines or sharps for drop off.  
Unused, unwanted, and expired medications (including narcotics) should NEVER go in the recycling, trash, or toilet but can be taken a HHW facility or event.


Local Retailer Take Back
Some pharmacy retailers now have convenient collection for used medications (sharps are not allowed) at 24-hour locations.

Sharps (Needles)

It is illegal to put sharps in the trash or recycling. Workers get hurt! 

View the sharps drop off instructions (PDF) before visiting the Drop Zone. 

To dispose of needles and sharps, place them in designated sharps containers and bring them to a hazardous waste facility.

If you don’t have access to a designated sharps container, you can use a #2 sturdy laundry detergent bottle as long as the cap is secured and clearly marked as “SHARPS”. 
(Only use large and sturdy bottles that keep the needles from poking out).

Paint is one of the most common HHW items but can be easily recycled into new products. The paint industry's product stewardship collection program, Paintcare, provides convenient drop-off with participating retailers or other HHW collection options. Visit Paintcare to learn about paint recycling collection programs near you and what they accept.

The Burbank Recycle Center's Drop Zone does not accept paint for drop off.  Please go to Paintcare.org for a listing of convenient local drop off options.
Visit CalRecycle for a complete list of prohibited items that cannot go in the trash and require HHW drop off in California.

The Burbank Recycle Center's Drop Zone only accepts e-waste, batteries, toner cartridges, bulbs and used motor oil and antifreeze. Please check out the Where it Goes guide here for information on HHW (household hazardous waste) and responsible drop off options.
Most government sponsored drop-off programs are intended for residents and may have some restrictions for business. The Burbank Recycle Center's Drop Zone allows Burbank businesses to drop off small amounts of e-waste, batteries and bulbs (proof of Burbank address is required).  Please call our office in advance to review your items. 

If your business has a large amount of materials, it is recommended that you work with a specialized HHW collection company that can serve your specific needs. View the City of Los Angeles Conditionally Exempt Small Quality Generator (CESQG) program (PDF) for additional information. 
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Where it Goes Search Tool

A more expansive list of disposal items and information can be found on the Burbank Where it Goes site. 
additional resources
Recycle Center
500 S. Flower St.
Burbank, CA 91502

Drop Off Center*

Monday through Friday
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Drop Zone* 
Monday through Friday
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

*Electronic Drop Off not available on Saturdays and on City Holidays.

NOTE: Recycle Center staff office is closed 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. for lunch.
(818) 238-3900