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    NYC Recycling Rules You Need To Know

    Recycling is a great way to do your part to protect the environment. With that said, you need to follow the appropriate rules and regulations in order to have your recycling picked up successfully. In this post, we are going to highlight some of the key NYC recycling rules you should understand before putting your recycling out for pickup.

    Make it Easy! Consider A Recycling Enclosure

    There are a few things you need to watch out for in order to stay on the right side of the rules in NYC recycling, but you’ll have those committed to memory in no time.

    To keep your recycling neatly organized and contained until it’s taken away on collection day, consider the use of a CITIBIN recycling enclosure. With a sturdy design and an attractive appearance, you can count on CITIBIN to serve you well for years to come!



    NYC Recycling Basics

    Citibin enclosures help organize your outdoor space and separate your trash from recycling - Learn more about standard enclosure.

    If you are new to NYC recycling rules, it will be helpful to get started with some basic guidelines:

    • When to put out.The night before your recycling is scheduled to be picked up, place your materials out by the curb between 4 PM and midnight. Not sure when pickup is? Here’s your recycling and trash pickup schedule.
    • What to recycle.Items included in the recycling program are metal, glass, rigid plastic, cardboard, and more. Here’s a full list of accepted recyclables.
    • What to put it in.When putting our recyclable materials for pickup, either clear bags or labeled bins will need to be used. Free decals are available from the Department of Sanitation to clearly mark your bin for recycling

    Need a great way to store your trash and recycling while enhancing curb appeal and keeping it protected from rodents and other sifters? Try a CITIBIN trash and recycling enclosure.

    What Can You Recycle?

    It’s important to understand which items you can place in your recycling and which need to be taken away as trash. While you might have a general idea of what you can recycle and what you can’t, taking a closer look at the specifics will make you more successful at sorting your waste.


    For starters, most items made from metal will be able to make their way into your recycling bin. That includes things like metal cans, metal caps, aluminum foil, and lids. Also, various metal items that might be found around the house can be recycled as well—like pots, wire hangers, curtain rods, etc. In most cases, if it is made predominately of metal, it can be recycled.

    Plastic & Glass

    Two other major categories of recyclables include plastic and glass. For glass, the only items you should be saving for your recycling bin are bottles and jars. Plastics, on the other hand, include a wide array of items. You can deposit plastic bottles and jugs, bulk rigid plastic, rigid plastic food containers, and more.

    Cartons, Paper & Cardboard

    These items include things like food and beverage cartons, newspaper, magazines, printer paper, egg cartons, cardboard boxes and more.

    Full NYC Sanitation List

    To see a complete list of the NYC Sanitation Department Recycling Rules on what can and cannotbe recycled, visit this page.

    Recycling Pickup Schedule

    It should go without saying that you need to know when your recycling is going to be picked up. You have to put out your recycling the night before collection day, but when is collection day? The schedule is based on your address. As we’ve discussed in a previous post, finding your pickup day is easy. Simply follow this link and enter your address to get the NYC sanitation information you need. This will tell your trash pickup days, recycling pickup days and organics pickup days (if available).

    Commercial Recycling

    The story is quite different for commercial recycling in New York City compared to the residential system. The Department of Sanitation does not collect recycling from businesses in New York City, so businesses will need to work with private carters in order to have recyclables taken away. There are three basic types of recycling collection used by businesses in the city:

    • Source-Separated Recycling. This means that the recyclables generated by a business are sorted at the source and stored separately from the garbage. In other words, customers of the business, or the staff, will separate recyclables at the time they dispose of them.
    • Co-Collection. With this plan, different types of recyclables can be collected together and transported in the same compartment of a truck. That truck is still not permitted to carry garbage alongside the recyclables.
    • Single-Stream Recycling. Finally, single-stream recycling means that a business collects all recyclables together and hands them over to a carter that is authorized to handle such a load. The items will then need to be taken to a facility that is capable of separating the various materials before they are recycled.

    Each business will need to determine which path is best for its operational needs, while always being sure to conform with the relevant laws and restrictions. One great way to store your recycling items in your commercial space is to use a high-quality recycling bin enclosure.

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