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In this environmentally-correct age, you can’t throw an old appliance out with the garbage anymore. Most areas require that you place household and yard waste in separate containers and that you deliver hazardous items to collection centers. So what are the rules in your area?

Trash pickup dates. Your city’s website will offer a garbage and yard trash schedule each year for your area, including holidays. Simply input your address, if available, and print and save the schedule in a handy kitchen drawer. You can also order new trash and recycling bins.

Recycling. You’ll need to know how to separate your disposables for pick up and what days those pickups are available. Los Angeles, California, for example, offers blue recycling bins for paper, cartons, small glass like spaghetti jars and metal cans and containers. They offer green bins for yard waste.

Yard waste. Learn your city’s rules for yard waste. Charlotte, North Carolina, for example, requires you to place yard waste in open containers on pick up day. Tree limbs and sticks should be unbound while leaves and grass clippings should be sacked in paper. Many communities forbid plastic garbage bags. 

Hazardous waste. Some things can’t be thrown out, but instead must be dropped off to special facilities for hazardous waste. Dallas, Texas, for example, offers mobile BOPA (batteries, oil, paint and antifreeze) pickup stations and HHW (household waste) stations to collect old computers, pool chemicals, poisons, etc.

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