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Hazardous WasteCity Trash & Recycling

Industrial hazardous waste is just the tip of the iceberg. Many of the products under your sink and in the garage are toxic and should not be released into the environment.  Download our Hazardous Waste Brochure (2015).

Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) includes but is not limited to:

  • Paints, stains, and thinners
  • Drain, oven, and other household cleaners
  • Floor and furniture polish
  • Finishing products
  • Solvents
  • Fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides
  • Smoke Detectors
  • Photo processing chemicals
  • Pool supplies
  • Fluorescent light bulbs
  • Thermometers and blood pressure devices
  • Batteries
  • Old gasoline, anti-freeze, motor oil, and oil filters 
  • Transmission, brake, and steering fluids

Easy Battery Recycling for Residential Customers!

  • Tape the ends of the batteries
  • Bag in a clear plastic bag
  • Place on top of your recycling bin on collection days

Reducing Household Hazardous Waste Pollution

The most environmentally-friendly solution to HHW is to not produce it.

  • Use the least toxic cleaners and paints possible.
  • Switch to rechargeable batteries. Limit your electronics to those that only require one or two sizes, such as AA and AAA.
  • Offer unneeded items to friends and neighbors, especially if you are moving.
  • Viable products taken to the Community Hazardous Waste Collection Center may be reused, so donate unwanted items while they are still usable. Always keep them in their original containers.
  • The Downtown Recycling Center offers free latex paint! Check it out before you buy.

Where Should Hazardous Waste Go?

HHW must be brought to a disposal facility because it contains chemicals known to endanger both human health and the environment. Please do not pour dangerous products down the drain, where they will end up in the ocean, or on the ground, where they can poison the soil and contaminate the water table. Sewage and water treatment plants do not extract hazardous compounds and substances can migrate a long way underground. Water tables in remote regions often have a layer of petroleum on top, which can end up as our drinking water.

What is Accepted Where?


Community Hazardous Waste @ UCSB Downtown Recycling Center (ABOP) South Coast Recycling & Transfer Station Local Businesses
Antifreeze Y Y N N
Batteries - Household Y Y Y Battery List
Batteries - Vehicle Y Y Y N
Fluorescent Bulbs Y Y $1 per 4 ft tube or CFL Home Depot
(compact bulbs only)
Paint - all types  Y Y N PaintCare stores
Mercury Devices Y N N N
Motor Oil & Filters Y Y N Motor Oil List
Other Chemicals Y N N N
Smoke Detectors (radioactive) Y N



Drop Off Locations

(Please note that businesses have separate regulations and fees that apply to hazardous waste)

Currently, there is no curbside collection program for household hazardous wastes, however, all of the disposal and recycling facilities listed below are free to residents unless otherwise indicated. Legally, households may not transport more than 15 gallons of wet or 125 pounds of dry hazardous materials per month; read the regulation. If you are unable to transport items, ask a friend, neighbor, or member to include your wastes when they bring their own. If you live in a retirement home, ask the management what HHW collection program they have. Information about the items accepted at the dropoff centers is located below the chart in the next sections. 

  • Community Hazardous Waste Collection Center (UCSB HHW) [map] [flyer]
    The Center is open to residents on weekends, and is located on the UCSB campus.  Bldg 565 Mesa Rd UCSB
    Hours: Saturday 9 AM to 3 PM
    Sunday 11 AM to 3 PM

  • Downton Recycling Center (MarBorg ABOP) [map]
    The City of Santa Barbara's Antifreeze, Batteries, Oil, and Paint (ABOP) facility accepts these items from residents.
    132 Nopalitos St.
    Hours: Monday - Friday 9 AM  to 4 PM

  • South Coast Recycling & Transfer Station [map]
    They DO NOT accept hazardous chemicals at this location; these should be taken to the HHW Center at UCSB.
    4430 Calle Real
    Hours: Monday - Saturday 7 AM  - 5 PM

Last Updated: Mar 22, 2021
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