How to Recycle Unusual Items

Latex PaintFeel good about recycling more – and keep more items out of the landfill – with our Year-Round Recycling Guide for Unusual Items!

Learn how you can get rid of that old refrigerator and get paid for it, recycle old electronics, give a new home to unused latex paint, and much more.

Explore this comprehensive guide online at

You’ll also find printable guides in English, Chinese, Korean, Russian, Spanish, and Vietnamese.

Avoid a Holiday Horror Story

Compostable Bag and Food Scraper_FREEKeep Your Sewer Fat-Free

Homeowners and building owners are responsible for repairing and maintaining their side sewer connections to the city’s sewer system. Sewer clogs often peak during the holiday season when turkeys, trimmings, and other holiday fare are prepared for friends and family.

Sewer Clogs Can Be Costly

When a sewer backup is caused by a side sewer failure, you may be faced with digging up your yard, removing the adjoining sidewalk, and/or opening up the street, potentially costing tens of thousands of dollars. Repairs are NOT typically covered by homeowners insurance.

An Ounce of Prevention

You can prevent grease from clogging your side sewer by pouring used dairy products, fats, oil, grease into a lidded container and placing it in the trash – NOT down the sink drain. Food scraps can also be composted instead of using your garbage disposal. Contact us for a free food scraper and sample of compostable bags at to get you started.

Recycle Cooking Oil

Call Republic Services at 425-452-4762 to schedule a free curbside pick-up. Seal uncontaminated oil (no large solids) in clean, clear, screw-top, plastic jugs. Label jugs with your name and address. Limit 3 gallons per drop-off and 10 gallons per year.

Are You Prepared for Winter Storms?

Logo_1_colorTake Winter By StormHere are a few things you can do now to be ready:

  • Clean gutters and downspouts twice a year. Failure to maintain gutters, downspouts, and outlets can lead to significant damage to your home when it rains.
  • Check your property’s drainage system. This is especially important on commercial properties that have multiple catch basins or other drainage structures that require regular maintenance. A clogged system can cause property flooding.
  • If you own a sump pump, test it before a storm.
  • Build a family emergency kit. Keep enough water, food and other supplies (flashlights, crank or battery-operated radio, blankets) in your home to meet your needs for at least three days. Kits for winter car travel are also recommended.
  • Have a family disaster plan.
  • Check to see if your homeowner’s insurance covers flood or other storm-related damage.
  • Protect water pipes from freezing in exposed or unheated areas (attics, basements and garages) by wrapping with tape and insulating materials.

Visit for more tips on how to prepare for winter storms.

Household Hazardous Waste Home Pick-up Collection Service

for Seniors and Residents with Disabilities

Product Safety WarningsLocal Hazardous Waste Management Program in King County, which Bellevue is a member, has a pick-up service that helps King County seniors 65 years or older and residents with disabilities safely dispose of hazardous waste they may have in their home or garage.

Contact the Household Hazards Line at 206-296-4692 or 1-888-Toxiced (869-4233), 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays, to schedule a pick-up.

You will be asked:

  • Your name, address and telephone number.
  • The types and amounts of waste you have for collection. Household hazardous waste is products that you no longer have a use or need for including pesticides, oil-based paints, solvents, batteries, fluorescent lights, motor oil, antifreeze, and household cleaners.

Note: The home collection staff does not collect other special wastes such as latex paint, tires, electronics, or medications.

A collection date will be scheduled, usually Wednesdays between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Prevent Flooding: Adopt Your Drain

Don’t let fall rainstorms flood your street. Help clear your local storm drain of leaves and other debris by adopting your local storm drain.

Every autumn Bellevue Utilities faces a big job keeping storm drains clear – there are over 20,000 of them around the city!

Remember to clear your drain only if it is safe. Stay out of the street and work from a sidewalk if possible. Put all leaves and compostable debris in your organics cart. Don’t put grass clippings, leaves, or other debris into drains, ditches, creeks, culverts, gutters or ravines.

If a storm drain appears blocked below the street surface, call 425-452-7840.

Get Your Green On!

BELLEVUE Utilities Smarter Choices LogoBellevue Utilities is offering free, hands-on workshops so you can learn how to live a healthier and more sustainable life.
With Zero Waste Hero workshops you’ll sharpen your recycling and composting knowledge and learn to reduce waste in the first place.
  • Learn how to save money by reducing food waste.
  • Properly sort recycling, organics and garbage.
  • Learn where to recycle unusual items like batteries.
  • Take home a reusable, recycling collection bag, a kitchen composting container and kit, and posters of how to sort.
With Green Cleaning workshops you’ll learn how to choose and make green cleaners and how to avoid products that are harmful for the environment and your health. Receive a free green cleaning kit and a certificate for completing the class!
If you would like to attend, registration is required. Please email us at or call 425-452-6932 to register. Spaces are limited to 20 people per session. First come, first served. Adults and children over seven are welcome to attend.

Workshop Dates & Locations

Zero Waste Hero

Green Cleaning

Salmon Watchers NEEDED!

Salmon WatcherJoin us to learn about the salmon returning to our local streams to spawn! You can attend just this one event or become a volunteer Salmon Watcher to help observe and record salmon in Bellevue.

Salmon Watcher Workshop 2018
Tuesday, September 18
7 pm – 9 pm
Mercer Slough Environmental Education Center, Community Room
1625 118th Avenue SE

At the workshop will:

  • Learn about salmon in Puget Sound
  • Learn how to identify spawning salmon
  • Find out how salmon use Bellevue’s streams
  • Learn what you can do to help

Salmon Watchers Needed!

If you would like to volunteer, we will help you choose a convenient site to watch. Volunteers visit the stream twice a week for 15 minutes to check for salmon, record what you see, and send in your observations monthly from September through December. The information helps us learn more about how salmon use our local streams, monitor fish use of restoration sites, and support professional salmon monitoring and recovery efforts.

Alumni, come for a refresher course!

Registration is appreciated! Tell the Stream Team you will attend at or 425-452-5200.

Get Started Recycling Food Scraps with a FREE Kitchen Composter

Kitchen ComposterFood waste and food-soiled paper make up about 30 percent of a typical household’s waste. If you are putting them down the garbage disposal in your sink, you are increasing your risk of a sewage backup.

Fats, oils and grease from cooking can gather in your home’s side sewer. When a sewer backup is caused by a side sewer failure, you may be faced with digging up your yard, removing the adjoining sidewalk, and/or opening up the street, potentially costing tens of thousands of dollars. Repairs are NOT typically covered by homeowner’s insurance.

Avoid this potential disaster with a FREE kitchen composter! Bellevue single-family residents can start recycling food scraps with a free kitchen food waste container by calling your solid waste provider, Republic Services, at 425-452-4762.

Keep the mess down by using compostable bags in your container. Get a free sample from King County by taking the Compost More, Waste Less Pledge.

Apartment and condo residents are eligible for free kitchen food waste containers if a property is signed up for organics service. If your building is, ask your property manager to call Bellevue Utilities’ recycling hotline at 425-452-6932 to request containers. If not, ask your property manager to sign up for organics service and help keep more waste out of the landfill.

Don’t Trash It! Drop It Off or Have It Picked Up!

Old ElectronicsRepublic Services offers expanded recycling options year-around for single-family and multifamily residents – two more ways to keep items out of the landfill. Customers can either drop off items at Republic Services Drop-off Recycling Center at 1600 127th Avenue NE or arrange for a special pick up by calling 425-452-4762. The recycling center is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Drop off these items or call 425-452-4762 to schedule a free pick-up

  • Fluorescent Tubes & Bulbs: Tubes should be wrapped in paper and secured with tape and no longer than 4 feet, and marked “fluorescent tubes.” Bulbs should be in closed plastic bags. Limit two tubes/bulbs per collection/visit and 10 per year.
  • Household Batteries: Place rechargeable and non-rechargeable batteries in separate, clear, sealed bags.
  • Rigid Plastics: Examples include five-gallon buckets, PVC pipes, laundry baskets, plastic lawn furniture, Big Wheels, coolers, and Nalgene bottles. Size limit: two-feet square. NO CALL NECESSARY FOR PICK-UP: Rigid plastics can be placed in or next to recycle carts on your collection day.
  • Scrap Metal: All ferrous and non-ferrous scrap metal, including lids three inches or larger, that are free of wood, plastic, rubber, and other contaminants. NO CALL NECESSARY FOR PICKUP: Scrap metal disposed of curbside should be put in recycle carts and be no larger than two-feet square.
  • Small Electronics and Appliances: Limit two-feet square or smaller and less than 60 pounds. Examples include microwave ovens, toaster ovens, irons, computer equipment, TVs, and cellphones.
  • Textiles: Place clean, dry clothing and household textiles in clear plastic bags.
  • Used Cooking Oil: Seal uncontaminated oil (no large solids) in clean, clear, screw-top, plastic jugs. Label jugs with your name and address. Limit 3 gallons per drop-off and 10 gallons per year.

Drop these items off for free

  • Bicycles and Bike Parts
  • Hardcover Books
  • Styrofoam Blocks: No packing peanuts.
  • Small Propane Cylinders: Cylinders must be empty – no tanks.

For a fee, call 425-452-4762 for a pick-up

  • Bulky Waste: For a fee, large appliances, such as refrigerators, freezers, stoves, dishwashers, clothes washing machines or dryers, water heaters, furniture, mattresses, and other similar large items can be picked up.
  • Construction Materials: Call for pricing.

Don’t Flush Trouble

NO wipesNever flush wipes. Even wipes that say “flushable” do not dissolve fast enough in our sewer system to avoid clogs. Wipes in the sewer can cause raw sewage to back up into your home and overflow into local lakes and streams. Prevent sewer backups and overflows by putting all wipes in the garbage. Human waste and toilet paper are the only things that should ever go down your toilet.

Find out more at