View Full Version : Disposing of Florescent Bulbs

Reef Frog
10/24/2013, 11:54 PM
Is there a way to safely dispose of these bulbs somthe toxins do not enter the environment. The question mystified the employees at my (well run) local solid waste recycling center today. They just said to put it in the common trash compactor. Yikes! Holy mercury poisoning Batman!!! I'll call & ask management when I think about it.

I've got T5s & household CF bulbs (which I no longer buy) building up and want to get rid of them the right way. Any options if the local facility has no answers?

What do you do?

10/26/2013, 04:42 AM
Here, T5s, T8s and T10s can be dropped off for recycling at the county recycle center (which doesn't take the small twisted-tube household sort). Most places that take the household CFLs don't take the long tubes. I've no idea how to properly dispose of them if your county doesn't take them.

LOTS of places (Home Depot comes to mind, but there are others) accept household CFLs (twisted tubes) for recycling, but they don't take the long tubes.

It is important to (try to) recycle them as they contain mercury.

on the spot
10/26/2013, 09:06 AM
Is there a way to safely dispose of these bulbs...
What do you do?

Our city offers hazardous waste drop-off. I'd contact your local public works department if you have one, if not move on to the county level.

Best of luck

Reef Frog
10/30/2013, 04:19 AM
It seems my local agency may include them in an annual curbside pick up for for hazardous household wastes like paint, insecticide etc Thanks.

10/30/2013, 10:38 AM
We used to get our spent T8s and T12s and smack each other with them. How stupid we were lol. I throw mine in the recycling but if there is somewhere that recycles them I would love to know.

Reef Frog
10/30/2013, 02:00 PM
I bet that they're not actually recycled. Rather the processing plant would just recycle or prevent the phosphors, mercury & other nasties from entering the environment.

It's kind of crazy that the so called war on coal is partially about keeping mercury out of the environment but we have untold millions of these bulbs going into the solid waste steam. 99% will break during the journey. Nuts I say.

10/30/2013, 05:18 PM
Most are not recycled. LEDs are much better in many ways, including this one.

10/31/2013, 11:34 AM
not to mention that the truck compacts the recycling to fit more as it treks down the block. Never really thought about it.

11/21/2013, 03:18 PM
just bust em up throw in garbage.they do the same for cfls but they have mercury

11/21/2013, 03:19 PM
im just saying what my recycling company does

11/21/2013, 03:20 PM
thay dont care whats released just the $$$ they get

11/21/2013, 03:20 PM
Ikea takes in bulbs and batteries.

cichlid nutz
11/23/2013, 08:37 AM
If the straight tubes have green tips, they are supposed to be mercury free.
Most MSW (municipal solid waste) landfills are lined to prevent groundwater contamination, but who can ever be 100% certain.

11/23/2013, 11:14 AM
My local city recycling/toxic waste center accepts the tubes, not sure about the CFLs. I would rather take them to a city place than a scrap metal recycling place. I've had a lot of experiences with gas stations and such that just dump the recycling bin into the trash dumpster at closing time.

11/23/2013, 07:02 PM
I have bulbs still from the 90s because no recycling takes then where I live, I'll call Hone Depot tomorrow

Reef Frog
12/01/2013, 06:17 PM
Recycling is ideal of course, but the most important thing is to keep the phosphors, mercury, metals etc out if the environment, sale I ally land and water.

This would essentially be isolating dust in a machine after the bulbs were crushed. Maybe this is how they do it already I don't know. But it seems like it would be a very affordable technology considering its value to society including human health. I'm surprised easy solutions are not more widespread.