CFL Clean Up & Disposal


CFL lighting is generally not treated as toxic waste, but it does contain trace amounts of mercury. Like batteries, these light bulbs should be disposed of properly to minimize their impact on landfills. It is important to find out where and how to dispose of these bulbs as many states do not allow CFL disposal in your curbside trash.

If you have a fluorescent fixture that was manufactured before 1979, the ballast (a device that limits the electrical current) may contain PCBs that must be disposed of responsibly under federal law. Go to for a list of national lamp and ballast recyclers.
Check out your Local Resources to find your state, city, or county recycling options. Many companies like Home Depot or IKEA now offer free recycling for unbroken CFLs so check your local store location.
Earth 911 also lists local recycling centers and recommendations.